Beyond Capitalism: YDS Winter Conference

Join us at our youth section’s annual winter conference Friday, February 14th through Sunday, February 16th in NYC for a weekend filled with hanging out with other young socialists, workshops on politics and major social issues, and training on how to succeed as a student activist.

Seize this last chance to register at our discount rate. The early registration deadline for the conference is this Thursday, February 6th! 

So don't delay, register here!

The conference is open to all students and young activists, regardless of whether you are a member of YDS or not.

2013 was a big year for social movements. We watched and joined low-wage workers striking for a living wage, thousands marching for justice for Trayvon Martin, DREAMers fighting for education justice, and LGBTQ people and allies making major advances for marriage equality. 

YDS activists were there. For example, YDS activists organized campaigns at UC Davis and Vassar College in solidarity with campus workers struggling for their rights. At Sewanee University, YDSers joined campuses across the country as they mobilized to fight against anti-immigrant hate speech. Our activists at William Paterson University trailed New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and demanded he sign a bill guaranteeing in-state tuition to undocumented students. And Lindsey Wilson College activists organized a very successful discussion about the cuts to food stamps and collected food for their local food pantry.

All of these important achievements – and yet we’re still faced with all of the same big problems: the move to privatize public universities, like the University of California system, continues in full force, neoliberal economics have pushed whole cities like Detroit into bankruptcy, and more than 400,000 homes were foreclosed on last year. So what are the root causes of these problems? And what’s the solution?

It’s time to go beyond capitalism, to put forward an economic alternative and to fight back against racism, patriarchy, and heteronormativity. At YDS’s Winter Conference we’ll be talking about our structural analysis of oppression and an economic system that protects and enriches the powerful.

But having a stronger analysis of the problems we face is only half the struggle. We need strategies and solutions too. That’s why we’re also focusing our attention on these important questions: How do we build a stronger student movement? What’s the role of the left in politics today? What does our vision of democratic socialism – a society free of oppression and exploitation – look like?

We’re meeting in New York City this February to ask tough questions and to start making a plan. You'll learn more about pressing issues like student debt and workers’ rights, hear from speakers like social movement theorist Frances Fox Piven, feminist Mikki Kendall and Jacobin Magazine founder Bhaskar Sunkara, attend activist trainings and anti-oppression caucuses, and meet other YDSers engaged in campaigns across the nation! Representatives from our sister socialist organizations in the Phillipines, Mexico, and Germany will also be attending.

Download the conference posters to put up on your community.

You can read more about the conference here.

What Is DSA? Training Call

May 30, 2017
· 57 rsvps

If you're a new DSAer, have been on a new member call, but still have questions about DSA's core values/strategy/core work and how to express these ideas in an accessible way to the media, as well as to friends, family and others who might be interested in joining DSA, this call is for you. 

We will talk through the basics of DSA's political orientation and strategy for moving toward democratic socialism, and also have call participants practice discussing these issues with each other. By the end of the call you should feel much more comfortable thinking about and expressing what DSA does and what makes our organization/strategy unique. 8 pm ET; 7 pm CT; 6 pm MT; 5 pm PT. 70 minutes.

Film Discussion: Rosa [Luxemburg]

May 31, 2017
· 95 rsvps

Join DSA member Jason Schulman to discuss the film Rosa, directed by feminist filmmaker Margarethe von Trotta. View it here at no cost before the discussion. Marxist theorist and economist Rosa Luxemburg (1871-1919) played a key role in German socialist politics. Jason edited Rosa Luxemburg: Her Life and Legacy and has a chapter in Rosa Remix. 9 ET/8 CT/7 MT/6 PT.

Film Discussion: The Free State of Jones

June 11, 2017
· 27 rsvps

Join Victoria Bynum, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History, Texas State University, San Marcos, to discuss The Free State of Jones. STX Entertainment bought the film rights to Bynum's book of the same title. She also served as a consultant and appears in a cameo scene. What was the Free State of Jones? During the Civil War, an armed band of deserters led by Newt Knight, a non-slaveholding white farmer, took to the swamps of southeastern Mississippi and battled against the Confederacy in an uprising popularly known as “The Free State of Jones.” Joining Newt in this rebellion was Rachel, a slave. From their relationship, there developed a controversial mixed-race community that endured long after the Civil War had ended. View the film here for $6 before the discussion. 8 ET/7 CT/6 MT/5 PT.

Introduction to Democratic Socialism

June 13, 2017
· 14 rsvps

Join Bill Barclay, Chicago DSA co-chair, and Peg Strobel, National Political Committee and Feminist Working Group co-chair, on this webinar for an overview of what we in Democratic Socialists of America mean when we talk about "socialism," "capitalism" and the goals of the socialist movement. 9:30 PM ET; 8:30 PM CT; 7:30 PM MT; 6:30 PM PT.

  1. This webinar is free for any DSA member in good standing.
  2. You need a computer with good internet access.
  3. Your computer must have headphones (preferred) or speakers; you can speak thru a mic or use chat to "speak".
  4. If you have questions, contact Bill Barclay, chocolatehouse@sbcglobal.net.
  5. If you have technical questions, contact Tony Schmitt, schmittaj@gmail.com, 608-355-6568.

Film Discussion: Pride

September 10, 2017
· 7 rsvps

Join DSA members Eric Brasure and Brendan Hamill to discuss the British film Pride (2014). It’s 1984, British coal miners are on strike, and a group of gays and lesbians in London bring the queer community together to support the miners in their fight. Based on the true story of Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners. The film is available for rent on YouTube, Amazon, and iTunes. 8 ET/7 CT/6 MT/5 PT.

Film Discussion: Union Maids

September 24, 2017
· 5 rsvps

 

Join DSA member and labor historian Susan Hirsch in discussing Union Maids (1976). Nominated for an Academy Award, this documentary follows three Chicago labor organizers (Kate Hyndman, Stella Nowicki, and Sylvia Woods) active beginning in the 1930s. The filmmakers were members of the New American Movement (a precursor of DSA), and the late Vicki Starr (aka Stella Nowicki) was a longtime member of Chicago DSA and the Chicago Women's Liberation Union. It’s available free on YouTube, though sound quality is poor. 8ET/7CT/6MT/5PT.