I've already blogged about Marxism, the superb 'festival of resistance' organised by the SWP every July, a couple of times. I've been every year since 1994, when my parents slightly reluctantly let my 15-year-old self spend a weekend in London with lots of dangerous subversives and leftist troublemakers. Looking through the timetable, I've picked a few sessions I can highly recommend getting along to. The biggest meetings, forums and debates have several hundred people at them, though there are also many smaller sessions.
1. Economics specialist James Meadway on Neoliberalism in crisis: the return of the state? should be interesting, as it engages with one of the thornier questions raised by the crisis of capitalism. The speaker has a knack for making the trickier points of economics clear and surprisingly accessible.
2. Chris Nineham's 'Anti capitalism: ten years after Seattle' gains extra relevance after the glimpses of anti-capitalist revival at the G20 protests a couple of months ago. He will no doubt outline more radical alternatives to the madness of neoliberalism than those critiqued in the meeting on the return of the state.
3. Lindsey German and Haifa Zangana discussing 'War, imperialism and the crisis today' will deal with one of the other politically significant dimensions of the crisis: its impact on global instability and the prospects for US imperialism. There can surely be few issues more important in the world today.
4. Tariq Ali - always superb - is talking about similar themes in a session called 'The American Empire in crisis - Obama at home and abroad', which will join the dots in analysing the crisis of US imperialism. This comes at a time when there are strong indications that the anti-war movement is willing and determined to confront Obama over his intensification of attacks in Afghanistan.
5. Economist Costas Lapavitsas will be outlining 'A socialist response to the crisis', which of course is what we need more than anything to understand the global situation today. The meeting should hopefully clarify the things about the economic crisis that can be puzzling to non-specialists like me.
Marxism will take place in central London, 2-6 July.