Saturday, July 26, 2008

WW Reports on Pan-African News Wire Editor Conducting Class on African History in New York

FIST discusses LGBT oppression, Africa

Published Jul 24, 2008 11:16 PM

Fight Imperialism, Stand Together youth group held two discussion groups in New York—one on lesbian, gay, bi and trans oppression July 14 and the other on Africa July 11. Readings for the July 14 discussion included Workers World articles and passages from the groundbreaking book “The Roots of Lesbian and Gay Oppression.”

Questions raised during the discussion included: Who was Sylvia Rivera? How, under capitalist production, did gay and lesbians become distinct political identities? How does class factor into the oppression of LGBT peoples? What is the update on the Jersey 4? Why was it originally seven? Is the Stonewall rebellion really not over? What caused England, Germany and the U.S. to not exclude LGBT acts from their list of offenses?

Are there current examples of matrilineal lineage?

Readings for the July 11 discussion on Africa included sections from “How Africa Developed Before the Coming of Europeans up to the 15th Century” by Walter Rodney, “Women’s Struggle in South Africa,” “Introduction to Neo-Colonialism” by Kwame Nkrumah and “Africa Liberation Day and the legacy of global anti-imperialist struggle,” from WW. For a complete list of reading urls, write to

Pan African News Wire editor and Workers World contributing writer Abayomi Azikiwe provided answers to some of the following questions: Can China play a similar role in Africa as the USSR did? What role do news services like PANW and WW newspaper play? Why doesn’t Workers World polemicize against developing countries struggling against imperialism? What is the latest on AFRICOM?

Other discussion topics included: What’s the situation with immigrants in South Africa? How is the current capitalist economic crisis affecting Africa? What is the land question in Zimbabwe and South Africa? How do backward views within sectors of the U.S. progressive movement toward Africa contribute to disunity? What are some political motivations for women? What is the potential for a resurgence of a revolutionary movement on the continent?

FIST discussion groups focused on Iran on July 21 and Latin America will be upcoming on July 28. Classes begin at 6 p.m. Call 212-627-2294 for more information, including any schedule changes.

—Monica Moorehead
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