School of Social and Political Sciences - Research Publications

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    From syndicalism to Seattle: Class and the politics of identity
    Burgmann, V (CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS, 2005-03-01)
    In the first half of the twentieth century the labor movement promoted the notion of separate working-class values and interests—evident for example in American and European syndicalism, British interwar Communism and Australian interwar Laborism—and was thus identifiable as a social movement. Like the new social movements of the 1960s and 1970s, this prewar identity politics successfully mobilized imagined political communities. By contrast, the retreat from emphasis on class difference and the turn to “equality of opportunity” politics, which Raymond Williams identified at midcentury and warned against, demobilized and weakened the labor movement. With class-based inequalities increasing from the 1970s, the decline of working-class identity politics ensured that the discrepancy between the objective importance of class and its subjective significance became especially marked. However, a newly forged identity politics of the world's economically exploited has recently reemerged in the movement against corporate globalization. From syndicalism to Seattle, we have witnessed the rise, retreat and resurgence of class identity politics.
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    Archaeologies of Anti-Capitalist Utopianism
    BURGMANN, V (Arena Printing and Publications, 2006)
    In Postmodernism, or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism, Fredric Jameson anticipates the emergence of “cognitive mapping” of a new and global type’ and explains this as a code-word for class consciousness ‘of a new and hitherto undreamed of kind’. This paper explores Jameson’s concept of ‘cognitive mapping’ to suggest that, at the end of the 1990s, the world witnessed the first glimmerings in radical political practice of precisely such mapping in the efforts of the anti-capitalist/anti-corporate globalisation movement. The utopian dimension to this movement is explored through examination of the declared aims in its rhetoric and the euphoric responses to its potential by its participants. The practical significance of utopian extremism in political agitation is then investigated through consideration of the impact of the anti-capitalist/anti-corporate globalisation movement on the institutions and systems it confronted.
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    Contesting the injuries of class
    Burgmann, V (Informa UK Limited, 2006-01-01)
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    APSA presidential address 2003: The beginning of politics and the first human
    Burgmann, V (ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD, 2004-03-01)