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Fernand Braudel Center Newsletter No. 27

Activities, 2002-03

September 2003

I. Research Working Groups

a) Trio of RWGs - "Crisis in the World-System: Options and Possibilities"

(1) Structural Trends in the Capitalist World-Economy: We are now proceeding to the next to last stage of our work, with papers on six leading industries at successive moments in the history of the capitalist world-economy: shipbuilding, textiles, steel, petrochemicals, automobiles, and information technology. The next step will be to try to see the trend line in levels of profitability in these leading industries at the time when they were most profitable.

(2) Categories of Social Knowledge: The Categories of Social Knowledge Research Working Group amplified its division of labor during the academic year 2002-2003 by adding India and the German-speaking world to the geographic/linguistic regions under investigation, which already included France, the English-speaking world,southern Africa, the Ottoman Empire/Turkey, and the Arab world. The project remains that of charting the reciprocal influences, resistances and facilitations, that were manifested in articulation with the structures of governance and accumulation when the general forms of western knowledge production were introduced in particular, Western and non-Western, contexts. The group plans to have individual drafts completed for the up-coming academic year and a manuscript for 2004-2005.

(3) Waves of Antisystemic Movements: During the past year the Waves of Antisystemic Movements Research Group moved forward on completing drafts studies that chart world movement patterns in four key epochs: 1760-1848, 1848-1917, 1917-1968, 1968-2001. Small groups of researchers presented to the group successive drafts for each epoch, with discussions focusing upon both advancing conceptions and indicators within each epoch and across epochs. A grant proposal to the World Society Foundation that would allow the Group to accelerate this work, and allow for a workshop in the fall 2003 semester, was successful. Planning and evaluation of complete drafts will take place in the 2003-2004 academic year.

(4) China-India:The China-India RWG is investigating the contrasting trajectories of China and India since these jurisdictions were incorporated into the world-economy through three prisms: agrarian relations, labor and industrialization, and merchant networks. In the initial phase of the project, taking Bombay/Mumbai and Shanghai as key nodal sites, the group is looking at changing patterns of industrial relations and forms of labor control in these two locations; the impact of their industrialization and commercialization on their rural hinterland; and on the merchant networks linking commodity production in these cities to overseas locations. The role of the state and of the evolution of legal and commercial infrastructures will also be charted. Ravi Palat and Kaan Agartan also presented a paper titled "Making Peripheral Working Classes: India and China Compared" at the XCVIIIth Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association, Atlanta, GA, 16-19 August 2003.

(5) Structures of Knowledge: The final manuscript should be finished this fall.

II. Research Project, "Dilemmas of Self-Determination in Africa"

The Carnegie Corporation/Binghamton University Project entitled "Existing International Borders and the Problems of Self-Determination in Africa," has been running for almost 2 years. Thus far, the researchers have completed three chapters of an eight chapter work. Four other chapters are in draft form. The entire project should be completed by December 2003.

III. Working Group on Coloniality

During 2002, the Binghamton members of the Coloniality Working Group continued the process of refocusing our collective research so as to address particular recurring "gaps and tensions" in our individual deployments of the concepts of coloniality and racial-colonial difference. We have reframed these as collaborative research questions and themes which we reorganized in order to generate working papers over the course of the next 3-4 years. We ended the year by identifying the following cluster of overlapping "working hypotheses" intended to orient the preliminary definition of our first research efforts beginning in the fall of 2003.

* One of the operating premises is that the foundations of the modern-capitalist world were set up and have unfolded for at east the past 500-700 years. Within this overall context, we would examine global racial formation and domination as a fundamental element of how this shifting and ever-expanding world order has been organized. A principal focus here would be looking into the significance of--as well as the social movements against--the multiple forms of this global structure of racial formation/domination.

* Another of the operating premises is that part of what is behind the modern-capitalist world's structure of racial forma-tion/domination, on the one hand, is an unequal and hierarchical division of labor between various regions and populations of this world. On the other hand, there are the global patterns whereby this global division of labor both creates and builds on the unequal racial-gendering and sexual-racialization of these various regions and populations. Within this larger context, we would try to verify the extent of this racial-gendering/sexual-racialization of global labor by examining how this process has unfolded among various regions and populations of the world. A principal focus here would be looking into how and when these different regions/populations have become parts of--and have contested--this racially-gendered/sexually-racialized configuration of global labor within the context of the past 500-700 years.

* Yet another of the operating premises is that the modern-capitalist world could not have existed and would not continue to exist without specific forms of knowledge or knowledge movements, varying over this long-term period--both hegemonic and resistant, as well as both academic and popular-vernacular--and vice versa (i.e., without actually existing modern-capitalist accumulation on a world scale, none of these forms of knowledge or knowledge movements would have come into being). Within this larger context, we would try to verify the extent, contradictions, and patterns of this relational interplay between specific knowledge forms/ movements and modern-capitalist global racial formation in general, as well as between such knowledge forms/ movements and the global racial-gendered/sexually-racialized configuration of labor in particular.

* Last but not least, another of the operating premises is that all of the above is synonymous with--or is an integral part of--what colonialism/imperialism have been historically. By this we mean historical colonialism/imperialism broadly understood: including--but not limited to--the antagonistic global relationalities linking direct-formal foreign rule and neo-colonialism, as well as those linking racial-chattel slavery to its politico-cultural and socio-economic legacies. Within this larger context, we would try to verify the extent, contradictions, and patterns of this oneness between historical colonialism/imperialism and (a) the modern-capitalist world's structure of racial formation/domination, (b) the racially-gendered/ sexually-racialized configuration of global labor, and (c) the specific and changing forms of knowledge or knowledge movements within the context of the past 500-700 years.

Among other things, our goal is still to determine whether this initial effort at collaborative research substantiates or not a thematically heterogeneous, yet conceptually cogent and sufficiently alternative perspective on world-historical racial-colonial difference (in terms of concerns and problematiques, though not necessarily with respect to conclusions) which could be eventually published as an edited anthology in an academic press.

Finally, the special issue of The New Centennial Review, edited by Profs. Greg Thomas (Syracuse) and Scott Michaelson (MSU) and containing 10 of the discussion papers presented at our colloquia and conferences, is scheduled to come out in December of 2003.

IV. Conferences

a) Retreat & Reflection: The Legacy of Walter Rodney and the Guyana Crisis, March 21, 2003 (co-sponsored by Harpur College Workshop on Black Movements and Global Studies)

Opening: Ali Mazrui

Roundtable "Walter Rodney: Legacies,"

Chairperson: Rigo Andino

Panel: Tiffany Patterson, Darryl Thomas, Alissa Trotz, Lincoln van Sluytman, Horace Campbell

Roundtable "The Guyanese Crisis and Guyanese at Home and Abroad"

Speakers: Andaiye, Rohit Kanhai, David Hinds, Eusi Kwayana (all Guyanese activists)


PEWS XXVIII: The conference will be held at the University of California, Berkeley on April 23-24, 2004. The theme will be "Latin@s in the World-System".

Call for Papers


Political Economy of the World-System XXVIII Annual Conference

(section of the American Sociological Association)

April 23-24, 2004

The 21st century will be crucial for the future transformation and/or demise of the Capitalist World-System. This historical system has lasted for more than 500 years. Depending on our social agencies in this moment of bifurcation, the transition towards a new historical system could lead to a better or worse system than the present one. Nothing is predetermined nor guaranteed about the future. There could be a more fair, just and egalitarian historical system or a more exploitative and coercive one. A major historical process in this transition is the transformations at the core of the capitalist world-economy. One of these transformations is the significant growth and political/cultural impact of Latin@ populations within the United States, the most powerful core country in the world-system today. In the year 2000, non-Hispanic Whites were a demographic minority in 70% of the U.S. cities and the largest growing population in those urban zones were Latin@s. Latin@ populations increased 50% between 1990 and 2000. The majority of them are working class and racialized subjects (Chican@s, Salvadoreans, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, Indo-Latinos, Afro-Latinos, etc.) within the U.S. Today Latin@s are the largest minority in the United States with 12.5% of the total population. Conservative estimates made by the U.S. Census of Population project that by mid-21st century non-Hispanic Whites will be a demographic minority in the U. S. and Latin@s will be the largest minority with 25 percent of the total population. Others contest these figures and affirm that if Latin@s continue growing the way they did during the 1990s, they will be at least half, if not the majority, of the total population of the U. S. before mid-century.

These processes imply some important challenges that are the heart of the contemporary debates about the decolonization of the U.S. empire and the future bifurcation of the world-system towards a new historical system. If the legacy of White supremacy in the United States continues, we could have within a few decades an "Apartheid" form of democracy where the demographic majorities are politically excluded by the demographic minority, that is, the social majority would lead the social minorities as it has always been for the last two centuries but with the aggravated fact that now non-Hispanic Whites will be the demographic minority not just in a few states but in the whole country. In this context, can identity politics provide an answer or is it part of the problem? What forms of democracy can provide a solution to these dilemmas? Can a progressive multiculturalism or critical cosmopolitanism contribute to the challenges of the 21st century? How can equality be reconciled with fraternity given our epistemic, class, gender, racial and colonial differences? The increased representation of minorities in government structures is important but not sufficient to challenge the ideological and political hegemony of non-Hispanic Whites and U.S. imperial power around the world. This leads to one of the main goals of this conference: How to think about the decolonization of the American Empire in the 21st century? How can Latin@s contribute in developing a qualitatively different relationship between the United States and peripheral regions in the capitalist world-economy? Although Latin@s cultural legacies includes a diversity of world cultures (Arab, Jew, European, indigenous peoples, African, Asian, etc.), Afro-Latinos and Indo-Latinos are often discriminated by Euro-Latinos within their own communities. Which traditions, imaginaries and identities will prevail within the Latin@ population in the 21st century? And which will be important for the future of the capitalist world-system given their strategic location at the center of the U.S. empire? This leads to another major question: How can Latin@s build a different relationship within themselves and with other groups (Asian-Americans, Euro-Americans, African-Americans, Native-Americans, and oppressed people in other parts of the world) that could break away with the legacies of White supremacy, patriarchy and coloniality domestically and abroad?

The Black-White paradigm of race relations in the United States has contributed in erasing other racialized subjects of the American empire such as Latinos, Asian-Americans, and Native-Americans. We would like to have a transracial and transethnic dialogue about the decolonization of the American empire in the 21st Century that would include a diversity of groups beyond identity politics. Which alternative forms of knowledge, existing cultural/spiritual movements and political projects can provide a gateway for new forms of thinking beyond Eurocentrism and fundamentalism or colonialism and nationalism? Which ethical imperatives and utopian imaginaries are we going to build in order to confront the challenges of the post-socialist and post-national liberation movements of the 21th century? Can border thinking, diasporic perspectives and transmodern strategies of decolonization be useful for the decolonization of the U.S. empire? Which alternative cosmologies and spiritualities can contribute to the building of an ethics of liberation beyond Eurocentrism and White supremacy? What alternative worlds can we imagine that could contribute to the future bifurcation towards a new historical system beyond exploitation and domination? Given the outlined questions, possible panels for the conference might include the following:

*Latin@s, Decolonization, and the African Diaspora in the Capitalist World-System

*Indigenous Peoples, Indo-Latinos and the Decolonization of Land in the Americas

*Democracy & U.S. Racial/ethnic relations in the 21st Century: Apartheid or Diversity?

*Latin@s and the Future (Demise?) of the U.S. Empire: Continuities and/or Discontinuities

*Heterolatinidades: Colonial/racial Immigrants and Subjects of the U.S. Empire

*Decolonizing Spirituality: Euro-Latin@s, Indo-Latin@s and Afro-Latin@s Spiritual Practices

*Paradigms in Latin@ Studies: Decolonizing Knowledge Production

We will provide lodging for conference participants. Selected papers from the conference will be included in the annual series published by Paradigm Press.

The deadline for submissions of papers or detailed abstracts is February 1, 2004. Those interested please send a title and an abstract to:

Prof. Ramon Grosfoguel, Prof. Nelson Maldonado-Torres, and Prof. José David Saldivar
University of California at Berkeley
Department of Ethnic Studies
506 Barrows Hall #2570
Berkeley, CA 94720


"The Triad as Rivals? US, Europe, and Japan,"

organized by Faruk Tabak,

Georgetown University, April 25-26, 2003

Robert Gallucci, Dean, SFS, Opening remarks

Keynote speech: Immanuel Wallerstein, Fernand Braudel Center, The Bush Regime and the Collapse of the Postwar Geopolitical Structures.

Session I: Empire and Imperium

Chair: James Reardon-Anderson, MSFS, Georgetown University

David Calleo, SAIS, "Unipolar Fantasies: Clinton versus Bush?"

Giovanni Arrighi, Johns Hopkins University, "Rough Road to Empire"

Peter Gowan, University of North London, "Global Imperium, Negotiated Globalism or American Empire: The European Decision"

Session II: The U.S. Today

Thomas Reifer, Christopher Chase-Dunn et al., University of California, Riverside, "The Trajectory of the United States in the World-System: Quantitative and Comparative Historical Reflections"

John Ikenberry, Georgetown University, "After Hegemony"

Robert K. Schaeffer, Kansas State University, "Rule Without Rivals: U.S. Hegemony and Globalization in the Core" John McNeill, Georgetown University, "Great power rivalry and the environment since 1900"

Session III: Europe: Prospects

Andreas Exenberger, University of Innsbruck, "Europe: Community, Union or Empire? Europe's Recent Challenges and Future Prospects"

Caglar Keyder, Binghamton University, "The E.U. as Alternative Empire: A View from the Periphery"

Eric Slater, Manhattanville College, "The Flickering Global City: New York-London-Tokyo and the Hegemonic Transition"

Session IV: China, Japan and East Asia

Ravi Palat, Binghamton University, "Japan: Signs of Empire, Empire of Signs?"

John Gulick, University of Tennessee, "Dimensions and Contradictions of US-China Geo-economic Alliance"

Seung-Wook Baek, Hanshin University, "China and east Asian Developmental Model"

Session V: Rivalry and the South

James Mittleman & Glenn Adler, American University, "Who is Protesting Globalization and What For?"

Keith Nurse, University of the West Indies, "Triadic Competition and the Periphery: The Case of the 'Banana Wars'"

Lauren Langman, Loyola University of Chicago, "Globalization and Social Movements"

VI. Harpur College Workshop

a) "Two Cultures" and the World-System Colloquium, Richard Lee, coordinator

Lisa Yun, Binghamton Univ., "'The Lid of Hades': Narrations of the Sea, Empire, and Coolies in the 19th Century," April 3, 2003

Ana Margarita Cervantes-Rodriguez, SUNY-Albany, "Bridging World-Systems Analysis and Migration Studies: Historical, Theoretical, and Methodological Considerations," April 3, 2003

b) Tri-Campus Workshop on Contentious Politics, Benita Roth, coordinator

Fred Rose, Pioneer Valley Project, Springfield, MA, "A Cultural Theory of Coalition Formation: Lessons from the Labor, Peace, and Environmental Movements," Syracuse University, September 20, 2003

Gay Seidman, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison, "Deflated Citizenship: Labor Rights in a Global Economy," Binghamton University, November 15, 2003

Silke Roth, Univ. of Pennsylvania, "Building Movement Bridges: The Coalition of Labor Union Women as Bridging Organization," Binghamton University, February 21, 2003

David Meyer, Univ. of California, Irvine, "The Context of a Coalition: A Look at the Peace Movements," Syracuse University, March 28, 2003

Dieter Rucht, Social Science Research Center, Berlin, "Coalitions, Competition and Splits Within and Among Social Movements," Cornell University, April 18, 2003

c) Black Movements and Global Struggles for Freedom, Michael West & William G. Martin, coordinators

John Burdick, Syracuse Univ., "The Afro Mass and the Dance of Eurocentrism in Brazil," October 17, 2002

William Santiago-Valles, Western Michigan Univ., "Radical Movements and the Intersection of Race-Class-Gender," November 14, 2002

Sandra Jackson-Opoku, Chicago State Univ., "Asnase's Journey: African Orature in Pan-African Storytelling," February 24, 2003

Hakim Adi, Middlesex Univ., "'I Am With You Until Victory': The African Diaspora's Trans-Atlantic Alliance," April 8, 2003

d) Globalization and the Refiguring of Urban Space, Ravi Palat, coordinator

Caglar Keyder, Binghamton Univ., "Globalization and the Refiguring of Urban Space: Istanbul," February 19, 2003

AbdouMaliq Simone, New School Univ., "People as Infrastructure: Aspects of the Reworlding of Urban Africa," March 19, 2003

Michael Leaf, Univ. of British Columbia, "Transitions and Transformations: Processes and Patterns of Asian Urbanization," co-sponsored by Asian & Asian-American Studies Program, April 23, 2003

Diane Davis, MIT, "Globalization(s) and the Transformation of Mexico City," May 7, 2003

e) Coloniality, Kelvin Santiago, coordinator

Elaine Brown, "New Age Racism," co-sponsored by Africana Studies, BSU, Convocations Committee, Multicultural Center, GVPMA-GSO, GSO, LASU, MASS-GSO, PAC, Phiota Phi, OCC Meeting, PIC-GSO, Women's Center, SGSU, November 20, 2002

Richard Lee, Binghamton Univ., "Without Begging the Question: The 'Cultural Aspect' of the Modern World-System," December 6, 2002

Gi-Wook Shin, Stanford Univ., "Colonial Modernity: Korean Experience and its Implications for Comparative Studies," co-sponsored by Asian & Asian-American Studies Program, March 26, 2003

VIII. Review

XXVI, 1, 2003

R. Bin Wong, "Between Nation and World: Braudelian Regions in Asia"


Hans-Heinrich Nolte, "Why Is Europe's South Poor? A Chain of Internal Peripheries Along the Old Muslim-Christian Borders"

Ray Kiely, "The Race to the Bottom and International Labor Solidarity"

XXVI, 2, 2003

In Memorium Ilya Prigogine


Jason W. Moore, "Nature and the Transition from Feudalism to Capitalism"

Jonathan Leitner, "North American Timber Economy: Log Transport, Regional Capitalist Conflict, and Corporate Formation in Wisconsin's Chippewa Basin, 1860-1900"

Rolf Czeskleba-Dupont, "Sustainable World-System Development: Restructuring Societal Metabolism"

XXVI, 3, 2003

Oscar C. Gelderblom, "From Antwerp to Amsterdam: The Contribution of Merchants from the Southern Netherlands to the Commercial Expansion of Amsterdam (c. 1540-1609)"

Leo Lucassen & Wim Willems, "The Weakness of Well-Ordered Societies: Gypsies in Western Europe, the Ottoman Empire, and India, 1400-1914"

Mario González Arencibia, "Socialismo entre Globalización y Mercado: Experiencias de Europa, China y Vietnam"

XXVI, 4, 2003

Stephen G. Bunker & Paul S. Ciccantell, "Creating Hegemony via Raw Materials Access: Strategies in Holland and Japan"

Sjaak van der Velden, "Strikes in Global Labor History: The Dutch Case"

Stefan Gandler, "Alltag in der kapitalistischen Moderne: Nicht-eurozentrische Theoriebeiträge aus Mexiko

IX. Visiting Research Associates

July 2002 - Dec. 2002: Daniel Ramos-Sanchez, Instituto Politecnico Nacional, Mexico

Sept. 2002 - Dec. 2002: Habibul Khondker, National University of Singapore

Oct. 2002 - Dec. 2002: Pedro Antonio Vieira, Univ. Federal de Santa Catarina, Brazil

Mar. 2003 - May 2003: César Rendueles, Complutense Univ. of Madrid

X. Public Lectures

Christopher Pollmann, "The Atomization and 'Technization' of Society, September 11 and the Pursuit of Happiness," Sept. 26, 2002

Richard Lee (Binghamton Univ), "Whither the 'Two Cultures?' Another Volley in the 'Science Wars,'" October 24, 2002

Pedro Antonio Vieira (Univ. Federal de Santa Catarina, Brazil), "Unthinking Economic Thought: Notes for a Debate on the Up(Out)datedness of Economic Science," December 3, 2002

Cornel West (Princeton Univ.), co-sponsored Black Student Union presentation, Black History Month, Feb. 28, 2003

Maurice Glasman (London Metropolitan Univ.), "Capital City: The Corporation of London the British State, and the Creation of a Global Market System," co-sponsored by Dean of Harpur College, April 22, 2003

XI. Papers Available on Website

Immanuel Wallerstein, Korean translation of interview, posted on the board of PSSP (People's Solidarity for Social Progress) in Korea

Immanuel Wallerstein, "Auf die UNO keinen Pfifferling,," German condensed translation of interview, ak - analyse + kritik - Zeitung für linke Debatte und Praxis/Nr. 472/18.04.2003

Immanuel Wallerstein, "Hail Britannia!" from Yale Global Online, July 25, 2003

Immanuel Wallerstein, "The Ecology and the Economy: What is Rational?"Paper delivered at Keynote Session of Conference, "World System History and Global Environmental change," Lund, Sweden, 19-22 September 2003.

XII. Kudos

Jason W. Moore's article "Sugar and the Expansion of the Early Modern World-Economy," which appeared in Review, XXIII, 3, 2000, was given the Distinguished Scholarship Award by the Political Economy of the World-System Section, ASA, in 2002. It was one of a pair of environmental history articles, published in 2000, given the award.

Immanuel Wallerstein was given the Career of Distinguished Scholarship Award at the American Sociological Association's annual meeting in Atlanta, August 17, 2003. On August 18, he also received the Political Economy of the World-System Section's Distinguished Career Award.

XIII. Visitors to the Fernand Braudel Center

Kichul Kim, staff writer, Culture Desk, of Chosun Ilbo (daily newspaper), Korea interviewed members of the Fernand Braudel Center and printed an article on the center as part of a series about international research centers.


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