Summary of Boaventura de Sousa Santos: "Entramos en un período de luchas defensivas"

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00:00:00 - 00:35:00

In this talk, Boaventura de Sousa Santos discusses the current political situation in Latin America, Europe, and Portugal. He argues that the way to fight capitalism and imperialism is to start by analyzing the different forces at work, and to build alliances between different groups of people. He also stresses the importance of communication in rebel movements, and the need for women to take a leading role in the fight for social justice.

  • 00:00:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos discusses the current situation in Latin America, where populist movements have been met with a swift backlash from the right. He suggests that intellectuals need to do a better job of critiquing their own ideas, and also to be more humble about the power of movements in the era of digital communication.
  • 00:05:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos discusses the current state of imperialism in the world, and how it has changed in the past 15 years. He argues that the current form of imperialism is not new, and that the way to fight it is to start by analyzing the forces at work. Santos also mentions the importance of the economy, the media, and religion in imperialism.
  • 00:10:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos discusses the current state of democracy in the world, noting that while it is often used as a tool of imperialism, many so-called "democratic" organizations are actually funded by capitalist interests. He goes on to discuss the role of "democratic" organizations in other parts of the world, and points to Europe as a continent in which left-wing alternatives are currently lacking. While he notes that the current situation is difficult, he insists that we must not give up on fighting for social justice.
  • 00:15:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos discusses how the paramilitarism that once existed in right-wing alliances throughout the continent is still present, and how the Portuguese right-wing fascist party, the People's Democratic Party (PPD), was condecorated by a dictatorship in Portugal in the 1990s. Santos believes that the democratization of Portugal and the rest of the continent has defeated these forces, as the representative democracy that the capitalist system has stolen from the people has not happened yet. He goes on to say that the problems of working within a context of such conditions are what motivates him to continue working on behalf of left-wing movements in Latin America, despite his status as an outsider.
  • 00:20:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos discusses the current political situation in Portugal and the difficulties of achieving a left-wing government. He points out that, if Portugal is to have a chance of success, it will need to ally itself with a left-wing party, and the current Communist Party may be a good candidate for this. However, many communists have not consulted their base before asking people what they think, and this has resulted in the party being seen as conservative. Sousa Santos argues that, if the socialists can develop a viable policy with clear principles and rules, they can create a left-wing government in Portugal. He also notes that, due to Portugal's small size, Spain is effectively preventing a left-wing government from being formed in Portugal.
  • 00:25:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos talks about the need for social movements to come up with new strategies in the face of increasing political manipulation by the ruling class. He also touches on the issue of miners in countries like Mozambique being killed or injured in the course of their work, and how this affects the everyday lives of the people involved. The talk concludes with a discussion of how women are playing an increasingly important role in social movements, and the need for solidarity among all oppressed groups in order to create a successful movement.
  • 00:30:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos talks about the current state of women's rights and how we need to fight back, as women, in order to regain control of our own lives. He notes that this is not a fight of rural peasants, but rather the women of America, and we need to unite in our workshops to come up with a unified plan. He goes on to say that it is not enough for women to be solely in charge of our struggle; we also need a "propietary" idea of our struggle in order to truly own it. Once we have this idea, we will not be afraid to fight and will not let our struggles be diluted by democracy or the current judicial system. We need to work together with political parties, as they may be necessary, but I am certain we will need an alternative form of political authority in order to truly break free from capitalism. Our current fight against neoliberalism will not be successful without these alliances.
  • 00:35:00 Boaventura de Sousa Santos points out that in times of political democracy, it can be difficult to resist forces that are opposed to democracy. He suggests that, in order to be successful, rebel movements need to be different from past efforts, and focus on building alliances between different groups of people. He also says that, in this new era of threat, it is important for rebels to be able to communicate in different languages, in order to understand the concerns of different groups.

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