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links for 2011-06-18

Saturday, June 18, 2011
  • " Not so long ago, an incoming PASOK government was able to carry the benefit of the doubt as it appealed to voters to support its cuts package. It could do so far more plausibly than their right-wing New Democracy predecessors. As a consequence, told that the alternative to cuts was bankruptcy, a majority acquiesced for a brief time in the cuts. In seemingly no time at all, the benefit of the doubt was frittered away, and now there is an extraordinarily broad coalition against the cuts, with some 80% opposing more austerity. Even small business owners are joining in over the near doubling of VAT. I don't know what implications this has for the Greek power bloc, which is probably extremely narrow, but the divisions at the level of the state suggest that there's a crisis of hegemony within the bloc, as well as over society as a whole. Mason describes the Greek state losing the functions of a state."
  • "Returning to the origins of the discipline, Sethi identifies it as a tool for political protest and activism among people of the third world. Using a sophisticated mix of spatial theory and local politics, she examines the uneven terrain of contemporary anti-capitalism and political upsurges in Africa, Asia and Latin America, emphasising postcolonial politics, dissent and resistance. Her analysis shows that as the traditional means of direct political control have largely lost their hold, postcolonial cultures, now dominated by neoliberalism, are seeking fresh ways to express their discontent.
    This original and persuasive work frees the discipline from its current preoccupation with hybridity and multiculturalism, giving students of politics, cultural studies and international relations a new perspective on postcolonialism."
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