Development

Patrick McAuslan, or the Yes

Untitled in Tanzania, Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos

Professor Patrick McAuslan passed away on the 11th of January, 2014. I do not know the de­tails of his ap­par­ently de­teri­or­ating health, or of his death for that matter. I know very basic things about the whole event, and I have chosen to keep it like this. This is be­cause I do not want to close the biggest question…

Human Bodies in Material Space: Editorial of the Journal for Human Rights and the Environment

Embodiment by Eric Franklin

This edi­tion of the Journal of Human Rights and the Environment is ded­ic­ated to the greatest struggle of our era – the on­going – and in­creas­ingly ur­gent – struggle to con­front the en­trenched and growing vi­ol­ence (both epi­stemic and phys­ical) of a global order that is rap­idly en­trenching both human and en­vir­on­mental vul­ner­ab­ility. ‘Business as usual’ is still ob­dur­ately com­mitted to the…

Anti-​Colonial Events in Brazil

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In the co­lo­nial coun­tries, on the con­trary, the po­liceman and the sol­dier, by their im­me­diate pres­ence and their fre­quent and direct ac­tion main­tain con­tact with the native and ad­vise him by means of rifle butts and napalm not to budge. It is ob­vious here that the agents of gov­ern­ment speak the lan­guage of pure force. The intermediary…

Another Forum is Possible

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I waited a couple of days be­fore sit­ting in front of my laptop and trying to or­ganize the com­bin­a­tion of feel­ings that had been in­vading me since I left Tunis and the 2013 World Social Forum. It was my first time, and, as every first ex­per­i­ence, I had charged it with ex­pect­a­tions, hopes, de­sires, and curi­osity. Forty-​eight hours…

On the Right to Peace and the Environment

War and Destruction / Kuwait

Peace and the en­vir­on­ment are two equally wide-​reaching topics, and con­sequently they could be studied sep­ar­ately and from a variety of per­spect­ives. In this art­icle, we will en­deavour to demon­strate the re­la­tion­ship between peace and the en­vir­on­ment starting with the idea that the pre­ser­va­tion of both is sig­ni­fic­antly com­prom­ised by the cur­rent eco­nomic system. Our central…

Are we aware of the current recolonisation of the South?

Oswaldo Guayasamin – Hands of Protest

It would not be sur­prising if, in the con­text of an in­ter­na­tional con­fer­ence, a group of jur­ists from dif­ferent na­tions iden­ti­fied a set of common jur­idical ref­er­ences based on dif­ferent legal sys­tems. This oc­cur­rence would be at­trib­uted to the pro­cess of glob­al­isa­tion. However, it might also not be con­sidered curious if a his­toric study about law in the…

The Political Economy of Indigenous Dispossession: Bare and Dispensable Lives in the Andes

Soscial Conflict, Cusco, Peru

The expan­sion of the extract­ive indus­tries has, as coun­ter­parts, first, the reac­tion of indi­gen­ous com­munit­ies in the de­fense of their com­munal goods (land, water, graz­ing, etc.), and second, the viol­ent counter-​attack of the state through po­lice and mil­it­ary repres­sion, legit­im­ated many times by the of excep­tion (in Peru the “state of emer­gency”, a kind of state of excep­tion, has been ap­plied by gov­ern­ments in pre­vi­ous years to con­trol socio-​environmental protests). Polit­ical eco­nomy and legal policy are both rel­ev­ant to this situ­ation and both are func­tion­ally connected.

In re­spect of polit­ical eco­nomy, let us bring to mind what David Har­vey calls “accu­mu­la­tion by dis­pos­ses­sion”, which is just the the­or­et­ical up­date of the “prim­it­ive accu­mu­la­tion” de­scribed by Karl Marx, that is to say: cap­it­al­ist expan­sion re­quires the viol­ent trans­form­a­tion of com­mon goods into com­mod­it­ies in order to be appro­pri­ated and then used by ex­change mechanisms.

Delinking, Decoloniality & Dewesternization: Interview with Walter Mignolo (Part II)

Walter Mignolo

Christopher Mattison: To con­tinue our earlier dis­cus­sion about Bolivia in re­la­tion to “re­funding” or “decolonizing” — you’ve stated on a number of oc­ca­sions that cap­it­alism or so­cialism, as they are cur­rently con­sti­tuted, are not the an­swers? One of the al­tern­at­ives that you offer to this issue is “de­linking.” Could you ex­pand on what you mean by de­linking in this par­tic­ular in­stance and how it in­teg­rates into modes of dewest­ern­iz­a­tion and the various layers of de­col­on­iz­a­tion? ¶ Walter Mignolo: Let me first re-​state that the world is cur­rently moving to­wards both re­west­ern­iz­a­tion and dewest­ern­iz­a­tion. The polit­ical am­bi­tion of the US (an­nounced by Hillary Clinton in Honolulu and fol­lowed up by President Obama) is to mold the Pacific into the American Century. This is in line with President Obama’s politics of re­gaining world lead­er­ship for the US, which was severely shaken by the pres­id­ency of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. Obama’s famous dis­course in Cairo was one of the first moves in this dir­ec­tion. The turn to the Pacific was the second. However, this move came too late be­cause of the growing con­fid­ence of the re­maining world, most spe­cific­ally in the Pacific.

Toxic Mega-​mining in Mexico: Death and Despoilment 500 Years On

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On 15 March this year, when many fam­ilies were pre­paring to get away for the bridge weekend (or in reality the few able to), Bernardo Vázquez Sánchez, leader of the com­mittee of the United Peoples of Ocotlán (Coordinadora de Pueblos Unidos del Valle de Ocotlán, CPUVO) was killed in a shooting that also left Rosalinda Canseco and Andrés Vázquez Sánchez wounded. The gunmen – clearly iden­ti­fied by the com­munity – were sent by the Mayor of San José de Progreso, Alberto Mauro Sánchez who, ac­cused of as­sas­sin­ating an­other op­ponent of the mining pro­ject on 18 January 2012, is a fu­gitive from justice. But it was the Canadian mining com­pany, Fortuna Silver Mines (op­er­ating in Mexico under the name Minera Cuzcatlán) that was re­spons­ible dir­ectly for guiding the fin­gers that pulled the trigger, not to men­tion the im­punity and dis­dain that holds sway in the ad­min­is­tra­tion of Gabino Cué, Governor of the state of Oaxaca […]

Neither Capitalism nor Communism, but Decolonization: Interview with Walter Mignolo (Part I)

Walter Mignolo

Christopher Mattison: During an in­ter­view that you gave with Madina Tlostanova in 2009, you posed the ques­tion (as a re­sponse) “Why save it at all?” — in re­gards to the eco­nomic system and the looming fin­an­cial crisis. You con­tinued by stating that it wasn’t the in­sti­tu­tions that re­quired saving, but rather our planet and the en­twined human network.…