Municipal socialism is becoming increasing widely discussed, particularly in the past decade. This session will start from the very beginning, exploring what municipal socialism means in the twenty-first century. We will hear from people and movements engaged in localising democracy for socialism, national liberation, feminisation of politics, ecology and beyond. We will explore the limitations and potential of municipalism to promote a socialist agenda before electoral success at a national level has been achieved.
As one of the co-founders and now Executive Director of the non-profit division of Cooperation Jackson, Kali Akuno is working to transform the city into ‘a beacon of radical politics’. For the uninitiated, Jackson is the capital city of Mississippi, with a population of around 200,000 people, its 80% black population making it one of the blackest cities in the US, and with 60% of people living below the poverty line. Cooperation Jackson is working, in a context of colonialism, white supremacy and patriarchy, to upend these dynamics through the building of a solidarity economy, to, as he puts it, “transform the material circumstances of the people living in Jackson”.
Elif Sarican is an activist in the Kurdish Women's Movement and former UK Coordinator of the Kurdistan Students Union. She is an advisor to the Freedom For Ocalan UK Trade Union Campaign. Elif is an anthropologist at the London School of Economics
Debbie is a journalist, author and co-editor of The Next Revolution: Popular Assemblies and the Promise of Direct Democracy, essays by her father, Murray Bookchin. She served as press secretary to Bernie Sanders when he served in the U.S. House of Representatives
Osman Baydemir is former two-term Mayor of Diyarbakir municipality, the largest Kurdish city in Turkey and former HDP MP for Urfa.