2nd Intercontinental meeting, SPAIN July 25- August 2nd

James Dumaine (James_Dumaine@babylon.montreal.qc.ca)
15 May 1997 21:43:13 GMT

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The Organizing Commission of Quebec for the

2nd Intercontinental Encounter for Humanity and Against Neoliberalism

Spain, July 25 to August 2, 1997

invites you to register...


For a world wich contains all worlds; Manifesto/Invitation to the Second Encounter --- Barcelona, February 1997.

We live in a period when human relations are intensely colonized. Everywhere the same social system subjects humanity to the law of money and homogenizes life, generating poverty and devastation. Faced with the ruins inflicted by this relentless machine, resistances arise from other ways of life, yet these seem condemned to isolation. The time has come to break the vicious circle which prevents humanity from bringing together its unease, its struggles and the will for change.

In Mexico the armed revolt of the indigenous community of Chiapas, organized by the EZLN, has opened the way towards a different future for us all. Since the 1st January 1994 the imaginative struggle of the Zapatistas has spurred people worldwide to create alternatives to neoliberalism. Their initiatives have been created outside the bounds of traditional institutional politics and always seek to involve the greatest possible numbers, especially among marginalized people.

In this spirit the First Intercontinental Meeting for Humanity and Against Neoliberalism was organized in August 1996, hosted by five indigenous communities in Chiapas, despite the military occupation and siege by the Mexican Federal Army. The first Encuentro attracted more than three thousand people from 43 countries in five continents. They gained the opportunity to meet each other, to reflect and express themselves, in an unprecedented act of solidarity.

These participants dared to cross the threshhold opened by the Zapatistas and sought to cross to the other side of the looking-glass. There everyone could be equal, precisely because they succeed in being different, so that various ways of life co-exist, all joined in rejecting the present system with the desire to construct a world which includes many worlds -- the 'humanity' of which we speak.

Everywhere there are people who are fed up with the dominant values, who seek to change their own lives, to open new spaces and construct a more dignified present. Everywhere there are willing accomplices desiring to live an adventure. To achieve this, it is worth extending the Chiapas initiative and creating the network of resistance which was proposed by the first Encuentro: 'An international network of resistance in which people help each other, a network without an organized structure, without a central command, without a hierarchy. A network comprising all those who resist.'

For all those aims we announce the next Encuentro:


26th July - 2nd August 1997 in Spain

We want a meeting of all struggles against neoliberalism, of all people (organized or not) who feel discontented with the life that is imposed upon us. We want to create a meeting which emphasizes the exchange of ideas, practices and desires -- beyond the formal conclusions and resolutions.

We want a self-organized meeting, where the people who participate create the meeting themselves, getting involved in the preparatory tasks in working groups which take on the practical tasks which make the meeting possible. This organizational process is as important as the meeting itself. We want a meeting which offers everyone the possibility of experimenting with new forms of politics. We want to leasrn how to open new self-organized political spaces. We want to break with our own limits and the barriers -- informational, political and cultural --- which keep us apart.

We want everyone, both men and women, to learn how to walk together and master our own lives.

And we want to speak with all those interested in making possible this Second Intercontinental Meeting for Humanity and Against Neoliberalism.


How to obtain information and participate in the encounter:

The invitation, sent out by the European collectives who are organzing the encounter, is addressed to any person or group who agrees with the above manifesto, and identifies themselves as in struggle against neoliberalism. The first meeting will be in Madrid, on July 25; after that, the thousands of people from various countries who are expected to attend will depart for six different communities, according to which discussion table they have chosen. Everyone will then regroup for two final days of closure, the 1st to 3rd of August. The `thematic mesas' (tables), are (tentatively)

1. The neoliberal economy vs. humanity; our lives beyond the economy.

2. Our worlds and their worlds; cooperation and solidarity versus market competition.

3. Struggles for culture, education and information access.

4. Women and their struggles; the struggle against patriarchy.

5. Struggles for land and ecology.

6. Against all forms of marginalisation.

Each person must be responsible for their own travel costs (and is of course welcome to do their own fund-raising, for example through unions, community groups, etc.) The costs of housing, food, and transport (expected to be about $100 US) must also be paid by the participant. Any person or group who can contribute something towards the financing of delegates from Southern countries is encouraged to do so.

If you are interested in attending, please contact us right away: THE DEADLINE FOR PRE-REGISTRATION IS MAY 31! (The pre-registration information will be used to plan for the number of delegates expected at each of the six mesas, and so it is very important to get this information to the organizers on time). If you would like to present a paper at the encounter, you should send us the text by May 31 (on diskette or by email) in plain text format, with a version either in Spanish or in English.

For more information, or to register, contact us as soon as you can.

Louise Boivin, Isabelle Gauthier, Jamie McGowan, Jacqueline Perez, Claude Rioux

Organizing Commission of Quebec tel: (514) 276-0827 fax: (514) 840-1185 email paqando@web.net

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