Ten months into the coronavirus recession, some estimate that the total external debt of the developing countries has increased to at least $11 trillion. The terms for the conversation on debt are entirely set by the richer countries, who are of the view that only the creditors – and at most the IMF – should be in charge.

Working Documents

In the Ruins of the Present

In the Ruins of the Present traces the challenges posed by globalization and what these challenges produce for our society. The first attempt to address the problems of globalization was neo-liberalism.

Ten Canadian Mining Companies: Financial Details and Violations

Raw minerals are needed for everyday life, but when that life is also the cost of our infrastructural needs it is time to start asking questions.


China and CoronaShock

This is the first in a multiple part series of studies on CoronaShock.

The Rate of Exploitation: The Case of the iPhone

Our second Notebook analyses the contemporary production process that results in Apple’s iPhone. We move from a look at the iPhone’s production to the inner workings of profit and exploitation.

October 5, 2020

Today’s youth tend to feel lost amidst organisations forged in previous decades. Major left-wing organisations created in the 1980s now face challenges to incorporate them. That doesn’t mean that youth are not engaged in politics, that they are not taking part in collectives, or that they are not forging their own social networks. Our challenge is to understand where and how young people are taking part in politics, becoming collective actors, and sharing their experiences, distress, dreams, and solutions.

September 1, 2020

Dossier no. 32 provides a brief introduction to the history of the communist movement in India, which turns one hundred years old on 17 October 2020. Founded by a handful of Indian freedom fighters who were inspired by the October Revolution, the Indian communist movement has a history of glorious struggles and significant achievements. The communists in India have tirelessly worked to advance the rights of the working people, and to demonstrate the possibility of a future without the exploitation of human beings by human beings.

August 4, 2020

In South Africa, grassroots activists talk of ‘the politic of blood’, referring to ongoing assassinations and other forms of repression. This dossier shows how grassroots activists and trade unionists have been subjected to ongoing repression by the state, beginning under apartheid and continuing under the rule of the African National Congress (ANC), much of which has never been fully acknowledged outside of activist circles.

July 7, 2020

The emergence of COVID-19 in Latin America and the Caribbean has accelerated – sometimes dramatically – a series of economic and social processes that had long been underway and revealed the result of decades of neoliberal policies. The increasingly authoritarian policies, precariousness of labour, and the current social crisis are among the consequences of the neoliberal model, which puts capital before people.

June 9, 2020

In dossier no. 29, we argue against the return to normal – specifically in the healthcare systems of the bourgeois order. In part 1, we go over what the pandemic has shown us about the healthcare system; in part 2, we attend to the voices of leaders of healthcare workers; and in Part 3, we lay out an agenda for a new healthcare compact based on the demands of healthcare workers, their unions, and their movements.

May 5, 2020

This dossier on the global pandemic focuses on three main elements: the structural features that resulted in our present crisis (from policies of austerity to the increasing wave of financialization), the most dire and immediate needs for the global working class, and a brief introduction to the idea of the Universal Basic Income (UBI) – including some critiques of the concept and some ways to sharpen the way we think about it.

April 6, 2020

This dossier discusses the current stage of the struggle for land in Brazil; at its epicenter is the contrast between two vastly different agricultural models: agribusiness versus agroecology. Key to the agroecological model is the concept of popular agrarian reform, which proposes the full-scale reorganisation of landholdings that goes far beyond democratizing access to land, challenging the hegemonic form of capital and presenting a different conception of and a model for agriculture and agrarian life.

March 2, 2020

This dossier offers a sparkling introduction to Fanon’s life and work, stressing the contemporary political traction of his radical humanism, and noting that his work carries an ‘irrepressible openness to the universal’ and an axiomatic commitment to ‘recognize the open door of every consciousness’. It examines, in particular, Fanon’s contribution as a theorist of praxis committed to move beyond the ontological and spatial ordering of oppression and undertake a form of insurgent and democratic praxis in which ‘a mutual current of enlightenment and enrichment’ is developed between protagonists from different social locations.

February 3, 2020

The Indian Communist movement has experimented with various forms of people’s polyclinics, which provide free or reduced-cost health care to anyone. The epicentre of this initiative has been in the Telugu-speaking region of India, where the Nellore People’s Polyclinic alone treats 1,000 patients per day at rates 40% lower than corporate hospitals and has trained over five hundred doctors who now provide health care across the region. Our Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research Dossier no. 25 focuses on the history of the polyclinics in this region.

July 8, 2020

In this report, we look at Cuba, Venezuela, Vietnam, and Kerala (India) to investigate how these socialist parts of the world have been able to handle the virus more effectively.

June 2, 2020

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States government has put its tremendous resources towards heightening aggression against its perceived adversaries – notably, against Venezuela – from heightening sanctions to a foiled invasion to leveraging its stronghold over international institutions like the IMF. This study takes a deep look at the US-led hybrid war against Venezuela, debunking the false narratives created to support this attack.

March 5, 2020

The world that we live in today is characterised by great social and political upheavals, with workers facing overwhelming attacks from neoliberal politics. The policies of neoliberalism and neofascism put immense pressure on women, who become the primary and principal targets of precariousness, oppression, and exploitation.

‘Imperialism’ is the third in a series of four Anti-Imperialist Poster Exhibitions launched in the context of the week of actions being held 5-10 October 2020. It gathers work from sixty-three artists and militants from twenty-six countries who paint an international portrait of anti-imperialist struggles: the struggles against neo-fascism and military aggressions and for national sovereignty and the protection of the people and the land.
In 1965, the Communist Party of Indonesia (PKI) had three and a half million cadre and 20 million mass base, including its cultural wing – Lekra. With 200,000 members, it is likely the largest left cultural organisation to have ever existed. On 1 October 1965, this would all change in the military coup and communist politicide that followed. 70 years after this revolutionary cultural group’s founding, we interviewed poet-survivor Martin Aleida on the Lekra spirit that still lives.
What began as a trade dispute in the 1990s has now escalated into the United States making an existential challenge against China. The threat against China is made for perfectly rational reasons: the US correctly sees that the Chinese economy is slowly going to be the largest in the world, and that the United States understands that China will soon produce the most advanced technology. Various hybrid war techniques to weaken or overthrow the government are simply not available.
When they really, urgently, desperately need to say something, the people don’t wait for designers. They get on with it, producing posters and handbills as best they can – sometimes with spectacular results. In the process, they too become designers, organic to their movements, communities, and contexts. The posters in Anti-Imperialist Poster Exhibition II: Neoliberalism run the gamut, from those created by trained designers to those by self-taught artists, from those by activists without formal training to first-timers.
In the early evening of August 4, a fire broke out in Warehouse 12 at the Port of Beirut, Lebanon. An explosion immediately leveled the port, the pressure wave reaching 15 kilometres in all directions. What had exploded was not a ship with weapons or fireworks or a missile, but a building that housed 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, which had been stored negligently in a port warehouse since November 2013. More than 19 officials have been arrested, including the director of the Port of Beirut and the customs director.
This interview with Pavel Égüez – a Latin American painter and muralist – discusses the situation in Ecuador and his new series of paintings, Cuarantena (‘Quarantine’). He calls on artists to reflect and participate in the struggles of the people – because it is social and political movements that provide the ‘thesis of the future’. He shares with us what it means to not only stay alive in these times, but to stay human.