February 14 to 16, 2015 (Oakland, CA)
Speak Out Now! Revolutionary University 2015: Tools for Changing Society
We all know that we face huge problems in our personal lives, on the job and in the world around us. These problems are bigger than any one of us. But together we can and must find solutions. Join us for three days of presentations and discussion of some of the challenges we face today. Come to all of the sessions or choose the ones that interest you.
Saturday, February 14
The State of America’s Unions – Marriage, Family and Relationships
Today the effects of the economy and politics on our lives. Dr. Harriet Fraad is a mental health counselor and therapist in NYC 2:30-5pm From France to Greece – Who will decide the Future of Europe? -‐ Raphaël Preston – activist in the French Revolutionary Group “L’Etincelle” (The Spark) 6:30-9pm The Basic Economics of Capitalism as a System – Richard Wolff, economist, author of “Capitalism Hits the Fan” and other writings.
From France to Greece – Who will decide the Future of Europe?
Raphaël Preston – activist in the French Revolutionary Group “L’Etincelle” (The Spark)
The Basic Economics of Capitalism as a System
Richard Wolff, economist, author of “Capitalism Hits the Fan” and other writings.
Sunday, February 15
Imagining the Alternatives – Science Fiction, Socialism and the Future
Science fiction writers Terry Bisson, Nick Mamatas and Lisa Goldstein
Taking to the Streets in Hong Kong – Behind the “Umbrella Revolution ”
Skype with Au Loong Yu, revolutionary activist and editor of China Labor Net
Mexico – Disappeared Students and the Current Political Situation
Anabel Hernández and Steve Fisher Investigative journalists, currently fellows at the Investigative Reporting Program UC Berkeley
Monday, February 16
Racial Oppression and Class Exploitation – What Strategies for Liberation Today?
Gerald Smith – longtime activist in the black and working class movements.
Our Role In Transforming The World
Speak Out Now, followed by time to talk and socialize – Drinks and snacks provided.
February 15 to 16, 2014 (Oakland, CA)
Speak Out Now! Winter Revolutionary University 2014: Tools for Changing Society
Saturday February 15, 2014
Changing the World! Can We Do It?
Sasha Lilley & Eddie Yuen, authors of the recent book “Catastrophism: The Apocalyptic Politics of Collapse and Rebirth”, discuss that in order to transform society, we need to look at the situation we confront – whether it is climate change, war, or the financial collapse – as challenges to be dealt with, not catastrophes that are out of our control. Then we can engage in effective organizing.
2:30 – 5pm
Forced Migration and Exploitation
Investigative reporter David Bacon’s new book: “The Right to Stay Home: How US Policy Drives Mexican Migration” exposes the way globalization and U.S. policy fuel the forces that drive Mexican migrants across the border. He will be discussing the situation of people who are pushed to come to the United States, where they face criminalization and are exploited by bosses who pay them poverty wages – if they even pay them at all.
Human Nature Is Not Our Obstacle
Richard Borshay Lee, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at the University of
Toronto disagrees with the view that the competitive and aggressive nature of capitalist society is a reflection of our human nature. For 90 percent of our history as humans, we lived as hunter-gatherers. Sharing and cooperation, not aggression, have been the key to our success as a species. Lee is known for his studies of hunting and gathering societies, starting in the 1960s, in Southern Africa. He will share his insights from his decades of research and experiences.
Sunday February 16
Global Warming – A Product of Capitalism
Joel Kovel, a well-known ecological activist and author on many topics, including the social and political causes of the current environmental crisis. He will be skyping with us from the East Coast, sharing his insights into the process of human created climate change. Kovel says we don’t need to work to regulate the destruction of the environment. We need a different system – we need socialism.
Sunday, February 16: 2:30-5:00pm
The Corporate Domination of the Media
Mickey Huff, director of Project Censored and professor of social science and history at Diablo Valley College (DVC), will be discussing the corporate control of the media and presenting the Award winning Film, “Project Censored The Movie,”which takes an in-depth look at what is wrong with the news media in the U.S. today and highlights the work of the research group, Project Censored.
Sunday, February 16: 6:30-9:00 pm
Science in Service of the Corporations
Dr. Ignacio Chapela, Associate Professor of Microbial Ecology at UC Berkeley, has been studying the impact of genetically modified plants and the misuse of science and its impact on our planet for years. His research and activism has challenged the dominance of agribusiness and genetic engineering in dominating our foods. He will discuss the role of corporate funding of scientific research in universities and how that distorts science and affects the universities and our lives.
Monday, February 17: Noon–2:30 pm
Video – “You’ve Got To Move”
The story and current activities of the Highlander Center – a school for training activists in the South who were instrumental in organizing integrated unions in the ‘30s and in the Civil Rights Movement of the ‘60s. Still going strong today, this movie shows some of the current fight backs against toxic waste dumping and mountain top removal.
Monday, February 17: 3:00–5:30pm
Our Role in Transforming the World
Jacques Morand, a revolutionary activist in France for decades, will discuss the situation confronting us today and prospects for change in the future. Across the world we have seen people stand up against the forces of oppression only to find themselves trapped under regimes that don’t represent their interests. The challenge today is for the working class to organize its forces beyond the national boundaries imposed on us and spread its struggles internationally.
What can we do here in the U.S. and in the Bay Area? SpeakOut Now – How can we organize and play an active role in the struggles around us and build the kind of organization that can play a role in truly transforming society?
January 19 to 21, 2013 (Oakland, CA)
Speak Out Now! The Early Winter Revolutionary University: Tools for Changing Society
Saturday, January 19
Why the Future is Socialism
Capitalism only promises a future of increasing exploitation for ourselves and the planet, but what do we replace it with? This morning we will look at the problems of capitalism, and how socialism – a society run by the workers – is not only a goal worth fighting for but a necessity for the survival of the human race.
What is human nature? It is too easy to look around our society and imagine that human beings have always lived like we do today. But in fact for 95 percent of human history, human beings lived in egalitarian, communal societies with no government, no army, no police, no courts, no taxes, and no jails. Working Class Struggles of the 1930s.
Film – With Babies and Banners
In the 1930s in the U.S., the working class launched one of the biggest strike waves in history. Workers across the United States sat down at their factories and occupied them. This evening we will see Babies and Banners, a film about the 1936 strike at General Motors in Flint, Michigan. More than any other strike of the 1930s, this struggle showed the power of the working class, and the role of working class militants and
Sunday, January 20
The Origins of the Working Class And the beginning of Marxist Philosophy
Marx said “Philosophers have interpreted the world, but the point is to change it!” This morning we will look at the origins of the working class, and the beginning of the struggle of the workers against capitalism. And we will see how philosophy can be used to understand society – how it can be changed, and the role of individuals in making that happen.
Capitalism is a system based on exploitation. But, every bit of wealth created under capitalism is created by the working class. This gives the working class the power to transform society. This afternoon we will look at how the economy of capitalism is based on the exploitation of the working class.
Struggles of the 1960s: the Black Movement
In the 1960s, one of the deepest and most powerful social movements in U.S. history took place. The black population, mostly working class, did more in a decade to tear down racism than people had done in generations. We will look at this incredible social movement to see how people transform society, and transform themselves in the process. We will see how just a few people can change the course of history by organizing with others. But we will also look at the limits of that struggle if the fundamental structures of society are not changed as well.
Monday, January 21:
The Paris Commune
In the Paris Commune of 1871 the working class created a government unlike any other – a government by the working class, for the working class. In doing so, they showed for a brief time what a workers revolution will look like – struggling for a just, humane, and equal society run by the workers themselves.
The Russian Revolution
In 1917, the working class of Russia made a much deeper revolution, which like the Paris Commune, put the working class in control of the society. But unlike the Paris Commune, the Russian Revolution took one step further, and began the struggle to spread the socialist revolution to the rest of the world.
Struggles of the 1960s: The International Youth Revolt
In 1968 young people all over the world, both workers and students struggled against every government and every form of oppression. This evening we will look at the international dimensions of the 1960s and how social movements are able to spread world-wide.