School of Resistance: Distributing Dignity
During the Covid-19 outbreak, our patterns of globalised production and consumption became undeniably visible: the halt of the global economy shows how co-dependent the lives of our global society have become. In the case of textile workers in Pakistan and Bangladesh, these interdependencies have brutal consequences: due to a stop in garment production, workers lost their jobs, without any compensation. Trade unions are distributing relief supplies to thousands of workers' families to fight hunger and provide first aid in case of illness for at least the next month. This situation is one of the symptoms of the current human rights crisis in global capitalism.
In the third episode of School of Resistance, realised with the support of medico international, the Pakistani trade unionists Zehra Khan and Nasir Mansoor will discuss the current living and working situation of textile workers in Pakistan and the global production and supply chains of what we call “global economy”: how is it really functioning? And how can it be changed?
Zehra Khan is a political activist and committed feminist. She is General Secretary of the Home Based Women’s Workers Federation (HBWWF). Her union organises women who work either as homeworkers or in informal employment in textile companies, the packaging industry, weaving mills, carpet and jewellery production and the manufacture of footballs.
Nasir Mansoor is a political activist since his student days at Karachi University, where he participated in the resistance against the long-time military dictator Zial ul-Haq. As the Deputy General Secretary of the National Trade Union Federation, Pakistan (NTUF), he mainly defends the rights of Pakistani textile workers.
School of resistance
The School of Resistance is a discourse format with experts on change from around the world: artists, activists, politicians and philosophers.
On 20 April 2020, the price of oil fell below zero for the first time in history. It was not the only world record caused by Covid-19. In only a few months a malicious virus succeeded in doing what worldwide protest marches and general strikes could not: slowing down our planet. Correction: slowing down all human activities on this planet. Suddenly we as a society remember the importance of "economy" as a way to support life and not to make profit at any price.
But how can we shape the future of our planet without falling back into old, destructive patterns? In order to solve the problems we face today and to find valuable alternatives for the future, the School of Resistance creates a platform of experts on change around the world: artists, activists, politicians and philosophers. The IIPM continues together with NTGent its work on the contradictions of the global economy: using the means of activism and art, the aim is to create a blueprint for a politics of resistance. The debate series consists of a bi-weekly livestream and will be concluded with an event in February 2021 at the Akademie der Künste, Berlin.
We will communicate the fourth episode as soon as the date is known. Starting from the killing of George Floyd, this episode will look deeper into racial injustice and violence inflicted by the state police and border patrol agents along the European borders.
The livestream takes place every two weeks on Thursdays at 18:00 (CET), smaller time shifts are possible depending on the residence of the guests and will be announced.