International Women’s Day 2013

When Luise Zietz and Clara Zetkin proposed the observance of an International Women’s Day back in 1910, I wonder if they imagined that over a century later their sisters would still be campaigning against gender-based violence and in defence of reproductive rights. In some ways it’s depressing that so much remains to be done, but the history of struggle over the years is never less than inspiring.

Viva la RevoluciĆ³n Bolivariana!

I woke to sad news today; Hugo Chavez, President of Venezuela, had lost his final battle against illness. It seems like only yesterday we were celebrating his reelection; now we mourn his passing.

Hugo Chavez will undoubtedly be remembered as a great figure in left politics; his legacy not just the vast improvement in living standards he brought to the people of Venezuela, but also the movement he built that will carry on his work, and the inspiration he gave to others fighting poverty and injustice in neighbouring countries and around the world.

That inspiration is captured in the documentary The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, which covers the abortive 2002 coup against Chavez, and the popular uprising that defeated it. It’s available in full on YouTube, and well worth watching.