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Peña latinoamericana - May 11, 2013 - East Boston

NEW DATE! Join us for a night of folklore, storytelling, arte y amor, the poetry of struggle bringing histories to life, and life to our circles of song.

Saturday, May 11, 2013, 6:30 p.m. @TecsChange (Eastie Workshop), 46 Bennington St., East Boston, MA Accessible from Maverick T Stop - Blue Line! Wheelchair Accessible

A Peña is a gathering of musicians, artists, and friends who come to share their work and to play together. Peñas take historical root from Chilean social gatherings during the 60s and early 70s that expressed the spirit of creativity and resistance in melody, poems, and artwork under a brutally repressive regime. Though they exist throughout the Spanish-speaking world, they came into fashion in Latin America with the Nueva Trova musical movement that ran in tandem with the revolutions of the day. In some places the term 'tertulia' is used, where in English we don't have an equivalent word. (Open Mic implies a certain formality and performance that doesn't quite fit this atmosphere.)

Peñer@s are encouraged to bring your own stories, songs, poems, or artwork to share. Please bring your songs, bring your verse, in whatever language or on whatever instrument.

Each peña hosted by e5 will be dedicated to the great tradition of someone who fought with the instrument of song and the spirit that defied borders. Please accompany us at our events with live music and ample nylon-string guitars.

RSVP for the event on Facebook and invite your friends! https://www.facebook.com/events/404779402952770/

$5 suggested donation. No one turned away. Snacks and non-alcoholic beverages provided | No alcohol on premises

South Africa - One Year after Marikana

Thursday, August 15, 2013, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. [NOTE - Date change] (at e5) Things are changing at rapid pace in South Africa. In the year since Marikana, the labor movement is embroiled in a fierce struggle over its ties to the Revolutionary Alliance; two new parties (one to the right, AGANG, and a more populist one, Economic Freedom Fighters, have emerged, in addition, of course, to the Workers and Socialist Party--WASP --which formed in the immediate aftermath of Marikana; the nation as a whole is finally contemplating the post-Mandela future (along with re-assessing his legacy); the ruling party seems torn between international puppet masters but the grassroots struggles that defined post-Apartheid South Africa continue apace. We will examine these developments in August, one year after the Marikana massacre.

By way of background, please check out the following short articles that address these topics:

An encuentro 5 and Mass. Global Action coordinator, Suren Moodliar, will share his observations based on his April visit to South Africa. The talk will include an update on the Marikana inquiries. He will then sketch out the different strategies being implemented that nation's diverse and changing progressive left. It will consider quiet opposition within the ruling party and former national liberation movement (the African National Congress), the faultlines within the labor movement, the burgeoning grassroots social movements challenging the state, and new political formations seeking to reconstruct the entire left. Each approach is described with a view to identifying the strengths and challenge of each approach.

CANCELLED: A Conversation with Richard Seymour, Author of "Unhitched: The Trial of Christopher Hitchens"

A note from Richard: "I'm sorry to anyone who is disappointed, but all businesses are shut down and public transport is closed. Until the other killer is caught, I'm not even able to really leave the house. It's especially unfortunate, because there is an urgent need for a response to this that tackles Islamophobia, and the clash-of-civs narrative that the likes of Hitchens have promoted."

Friday, April 19, 2013, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.  @ encuentro 5 - 9 Hamilton Place, Suite 2A, Boston, MA 02108 (note location change to e5)

Update: Because the original venue was located within the crime scene at Copley, the event has been moved to encuentro 5.

In light of the attack and the highly racialized response from some of the media, we would like to offer this event as a place to for people to freely discuss the attack on Boston along with the original subject matter. Hitchens' notorious echo of "turn tragedy into war," following the September 11th attacks provides a strong negative lesson. Let's bring our minds and hearts together to discuss how we could create a positive one.

Presentation and Q&A with author Richard Seymour

On Friday April 19th, join Richard Seymour, one of Britain's leading young radical intellectuals and principal contributor to the popular blog, Lenin's Tomb, for a discussion of his recent book, Unhitched: The Trial of Christopher Hitchens.

In his younger years, a career-minded socialist, Hitchens emerged from the smoke of 9/11 a neoconservative “Marxist,” an advocate of America's invasion of Iraq filled with passionate intensity. Throughout his life, he played the role of universal gadfly, whose commitment to the truth transcended the party line as well as received wisdom. But how much of this was imposture? In this highly critical study, Richard Seymour casts a cold eye over the career of the “Hitch” to uncover an intellectual trajectory determined by expediency and a fetish for power, which is also a cautionary tale for our times.

This event is free and open to the public. See Facebook Event Page.

RICHARD SEYMOUR: One of Britain's leading young radical intellectuals, Richard is the principal contributor to Lenin's Tomb (http://www.leninology.com/), one of the UK's most popular blogs. A regular columnist for the Guardian, Seymour is also the author four books, most recently "American Insurgents: A Brief History of American Anti-Imperialism" (Haymarket 2012) and "Unhitched: The Trial of Christopher Hitchens" (Verso 2013). He is a founding member of the International Socialist Network.

Art Sale for Cuban Hurricane Sandy Survivors

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. Nelson Da Costa is an Angolan artist and war refugee who lived and studied in Cuba for 18 years. Part of that time was spent at the Anton Makarenko School which was recently devastated by Hurricane Sandy. To help his former school, Nelson is doing a special one night sale of some of his works. Proceeds beyond his expenses will go to the school.

Nelson emigrated to the United State in 2002 and received a Master of Fine Arts in 2008 at  Tufts University and at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts. He lives and works in Boston.  

Forty Years in the Labor Movement

Lessons from Organizer and Strategist Peter Van Delft

Thursday, February 21, 2013, 7:00 p.m. At no previous point in its history has the situation of the labor movement been more dire. At the same time, new waves of immigrant and community organizing and the rise of middle-class activism may signal renewal for the movement that brought dignity to millions of workers. This event helps as look forward by first looking back on Peter's 4 decades of service to the labor movement.

About Peter: A longtime activist and a third-generation socialist, Peter Van Delft has spent more than forty years in the labor movement. Following World War II he attended the University of California at Berkeley where he earned an M.A. in Anthropology and where he was involved in activities leading to increased admissions and support for low income and students of color.

Until his retirement Peter was a Vice President of New York based, 30,000 member, District 65. Earlier, he had been a member of the National Maritime Union and of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union.

Raúl Zibechi: Dispersing Power

Monday, November 8, 2010, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. Join Uruguayan activist-intellectual and journalist, Raúl Zibechi, for a wide-ranging conversation about social movements and social change. The point of departure is his latest work, Dispersing Power: Social Movements as Anti-State Forces. It considers the largely indigenous social movements organizing in El Alto, Bolivia that both brought Evo Morales to state power and continue their challenges to the state. This event is co-sponsored with Boston Bolivarianos, the Global Economic Alternatives Network and the journal Socialism and Democracy.

MayDay Movie Festival Week

April 25th to April 30th, 2010 (At encuentro 5, Lucy Parson's Center, & Haley House) Leading up to the MayDay 2010 rallies and marches, join us across the city for six days of movies and discussion on the topics of workers' struggle, immigration, history, political analysis, and alternatives. Featuring an exhibit of Justice Artwork at encuentro 5 from local worker-run cooperative Red Sun Press!

Festival Schedule (read more):

Extrajudicial Killings in Colombia...Not In Our Name!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009, 7:00 p.m. "My name is Martha Lucia Giraldo Villano and I was born on June 22, 1978 in Cauca, Colombia. I am the daughter of José Orlando Giraldo, a small-scale farmer who was the victim of an extrajudicial killing by the National Army. In my country, there have been many extrajudicial killings that are also categorized as false positives (the killing of innocent civilians to pass them off as guerrillas killed in combat within the context of Colombia's armed conflict). The execution of my father is an example of a 'false-positive' murder."

"I am part of the Victims of State Crimes Movement. Along with other victims, we work together on organizing and training in order to demand our rights to truth, justice and reparation."

Patricia Hernandez: “Autonomous Education” from Chiapas to Mexico City – Urban-Zapatista Links

Saturday, November 7, 2009, 6:30 p.m. Mexico-US Solidarity Network invites you to join us for a discussion of popular education in Zapatista indigenous communities and the role of urban academics as resources in constructing an autonomous education system.

Patricia Hernández, a sociologist specializing in education & gender, has worked since 2001 with indigenous communities to develop their primary and secondary schools, following a model of "autonomous education." She worked intensively with indigenous teachers—called "education promoters" (promoter@s)—to develop the secondary school for indigenous children living in the Zona Selva Tzeltal. Local leaders, who oversaw the project, wanted the community's demands for land, food, peace, justice and democracy to serve as the content for classes on history, language and mathematics.

The Guatemalan Dream: Fair Trade & Fair Politics

Thursday, June 18, 2009, 7:00 p.m. Omar Mejia, co founder of Café Conciencia and filmmaker Willy Barreno, will present their work creating economic development and awareness by weaving a network of community run cooperatives in Guatemala, the Guatemalan migrant
community in the United States and the American consumer who is interested in Fair-Trade and Organic principles. They will speak about connections with rural and indigenous communities who will self-preserve and grow by having equal access to food, shelter, employment and education. We are invested in the hopes that Guatemala’s producer community and U.S. market will cultivate a relationship that generates a sustainable and dignified way of life so that immigration in exchange for food is not the only option.

This event is organized by the Boston Interpreters Collective.

Peoples' Music: An Evening with Sergio Reyes, Simon Rios and many others

The Music of Social Struggle from Latin America

Saturday, June 6, 2009, 7:00 p.m. Capping off events and actions on Bolivia, Chiapas, Colombia, El Salvador, and Venezuela, and organizing to mark May Day 2009, we will be enjoying the music of Latin America with Sergio Reyes, Simon Rios and many others.

Vietnam Today: A Reportback

Women, Agent Orange and the Socialist Market Economy

Thursday, May 7, 2009, 7:00 p.m. Video, slide show and presentations by two tour members, followed by discussion. The study tour was organized by the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism.

Vietnam today is bustling, colorful, spirited and changing into something new. A 16-person national study tour visited the country in Jan. 2009 hosted by the Vietnam Women’s Union. The group learned about the VWU, a 13-million member grassroots organization that has considerable influence on national policy. The legacies of war was another theme as a US Vietnam vet met with three former NLF fighters in a moving encounter. The remaining sore spot with the Vietnamese on the war is the issue of the use of agent orange/dioxin with three million victims and continued birth defects, a fact the US government has never acknowledged. Vietnamese experts also lectured about the strategy for development, the socialist market economy.

Chiapas: Indigenous Struggle & Popular Alternatives to Capitalism

A Conversation with Jorge Santiago

Thursday, April 2, 7:00 p.m. As the Wall Street financial crisis sparks urgent discussion of shortcomings in the US economy, the Mexico-US Solidarity Network invites you to join us in examining lessons from economic projects in the indigenous communities of southern Mexico . Jorge Santiago is the former Director of Desarrollo Económico y Social de los Mexicanos Indígenas (DESMI; Indigenous Mexican Social & Economic Development) where he has worked since the 1970s developing economic alternatives in over 200 indigenous communities in Chiapas , the southernmost state of Mexico.