"World at a Crossroads: Fighting for Socialism in the 21st Century" is a four-day conference to be held in Sydney on April 10-13 (the Easter long weekend) next year.
At a time of global economic and environmental crises, this conference will be a much-needed opportunity for progressive activists from around Australia, and the world, to come together to share information and ideas, learn from each other, and plan responses and solutions that put people and the environment before capitalist greed.
Hundreds of activists from many different campaigns in Australia will join participants from Latin America, the Asia-Pacific and North America in dozens of panel presentations and workshops dealing with the urgent questions that confront us all.
War, imperialism, food security, racism, workers' rights, sexism, the media and culture, and many more topics will be on the agenda.
Most of all, however, this conference will be about creating solutions. The rising revolutionary movements in Latin America, which are posing the most serious challenge to global capitalist destruction for decades, are full of inspiration and lessons for people fighting for justice everywhere.
Those struggles, and the alternative social systems they are creating, will be a big feature of this conference with the participation of guest speakers from Latin America.
Michael Lebowitz, the director of the program in "Transformative Practice and Human Development" at the Centro Internacional Miranda in Caracas and author of Build it Now: 21st Century Socialism (2006), will address a number of sessions about the Bolivarian revolution that is transforming Venezuela.
The author of Beyond Capital: Marx's Political Economy of the Working Class, winner of the Isaac Deutscher memorial prize for 2004, and professor emeritus of economics at Simon Fraser University in Canada, Lebowitz will also discuss the contribution of Marxism to understanding and changing the world.
Luis Bilbao, a participant in the construction of the mass-based United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) and the Union of South American Nations (Unasur), will also feature at the conference.
Bilbao, an Argentinean, is a veteran of the Latin American left and currently professor of Political Economy and International Politics at Taller Escuela Argentina School of Journalism. He is also founding editor of the Venezuelan monthly America XXI and the author of 16 books, including, most recently, Venezuela in Revolution: the rebirth of socialism (2008).
On the urgent question of stopping climate change, the conference will feature Canadian eco-socialist Ian Angus. Angus is the editor of climateandcapitalism.com and founder of the Ecosocialist International Network.
He is also associate editor of Socialist Voice; director of the Socialist History Project; and author of: Canadian Bolsheviks: The Early Years of the Communist Party of Canada; Food Crisis: World Hunger, Agribusiness and the Food Sovereignty Alternative; How to Avoid Action on Climate Change: The fine art of greenwash in Canadian politics; and Confronting the Climate Change Crisis.
The many struggles of the people in the Asia-Pacific region against imperialist exploitation and state repression, and for genuine democracy and social justice will be addressed by guest speakers from left parties, trade unions and social movements in the Philippines, Malaysia, Pakistan, India, Indonesia and Timor Leste, among others.
"World at a Crossroads" is being hosted by the Democratic Socialist Perspective and the socialist youth organisation Resistance, and is sponsored by Green Left Weekly.