Another World is Possible

Popular Alternatives to Globalization at the World Social Forum

Edited by William Fisher and Thomas Ponniah  

Paperback $27.95

The collection explains the history and significance of the World Social Forum, held each year in Porto Alegre, Brazil, and brings together the most important themes and voices expressed by the 30,000 members of citizens’ movements who take part. Their power emerges from the range of disparate activists and organizations – indigenous groups, trade unions, environmentalists, women’s organizations, church groups, students – that make up the global justice movement. This book assembles some of the constructive thinking around key issues: how to produce wealth and manage economies in the interest of people; social justice; environmental sustainability; affirmation of civil society and public space; democracy and ethical political action. The results point to a very different human – and humane – future.

The preface is by Michael Hardt and Toni Negri. Contributors include Vandana Shiva, Ricardo Petrella, Kevin Danaher, Roberto Savio, Medha Patkar and Nicola Bullard.

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Contents

  • Editor’s Preface
  • Foreword (Michael Hart & Toni Negri)
  • Introduction: The World Social Forum and the Reinvention of Democracy (Thomas Ponniah & William F. Fisher)
  • PART I: THE PRODUCTION OF WEALTH AND SOCIAL REPRODUCTION
  • External Debt
  • Africa/Brazil
  • Financial Capital
  • International Trade
  • Transnational Corporations Labour
  • A Solidarity Economy
  • PART II: ACCESS TO WEALTH AND SUSTAINABILITY
  • Environment and Sustainability
  • Water—A Common Good
  • Knowledge, Copyright and Patents
  • Medicine, Health, AIDS
  • Food
  • Cities, Urban Populations o Indigenous Peoples
  • PART III: THE AFFIRMATION OF CIVIL SOCIETY AND PUBLIC SPACE
  • The Media
  • Education
  • Violence
  • Discrimination and Intolerance
  • Migration and the Traffic in People
  • The Global Civil Society Movement
  • PART IV: POLITICAL POWER AND ETHICS IN THE NEW SOCIETY
  • The International Architecture of Power
  • Militarism and Globalization
  • Human Rights
  • Sovereignty
  • Democracy
  • Values
  • Epilogue
  • Appendices
  • Index

Authors

  • William Fisher

    Clark University

    William F Fisher is an Associate Professor and the Director of the Department of International Development, Community, and Environment at Clark University. From 1992 to 2000, Professor Fisher taught in the Department of Anthropology at Harvard University, where he was Director of Graduate Studies in Anthropology and a Dillon Fellow at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. He also taught at Princeton University and Columbia, where he served as assistant director of Columbia’s Center for South Asian Studies and directed the Economic and Political Development specialization at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs.

    His research centers on the social and environmental impact of large dams, forced displacement, transnational advocacy, competition over natural resources and non-governmental organizations. His research and work for such agencies as CARE, USAID, and the UNDP have taken him to several continents. Other research activities, mostly in South Asia, include ethnic associations, competition for natural resources, non-governmental associations, and the role of participation and community-based institutions in development planning and action.

  • Thomas Ponniah

    Clark University

    Thomas Ponniah is a Ph.D. candidate at the Graduate School of Geography at Clark University. His dissertation is focused on World Social Forum alternatives to contemporary globalization. His research interests include critical global studies, development theory, philosophy, social theory, social movements, cultural studies, and nature-society relations. Since 1994, he has been a lecturer and researcher at Toronto City College. He has also been a teaching assistant for the “Global Society” and “Political Economy of Third World Development” courses at Clark University. He is currently a teaching assistant at Harvard University. He is the winner of the 2003 Antipode Graduate Scholarship and the 2003 Davis-Putter Scholarship.

    He holds a M.A. in Comparative Literature from Rutgers University, an M.Soc.Sci in Cultural Studies from the University of Birmingham, and a B.A. from the Liberal Arts College at Concordia University. He worked for 5 months as an intern and researcher with the World Social Forum Secretariat in Brazil and as an intern with the Asian Social Forum Secretariat in India.