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Program Information
Empire & its Futures: a series of 3 lectures by Tariq Ali
Tariq Ali
 Barry Murphy  Contact Contributor
May 27, 2011, 6:18 a.m.
According to Tariq Ali, global markets have moved eastwards towards China. He considers where this superpower on the rise will be in thirty years' time.
Radio New Zealand - Te Reo Irirangi o Aotearoa
The University of Auckland
Sir Douglas Robb Lectures 2011
17 March 2011 to 23 March 2011

Empire and its futures. A series of three lectures by Tariq Ali.
In a changing world with American military power transcending US economic weaknesses, the amazing rise of China and the continuing occupations in the Arab world and South Asia, what are the likely outcomes? Is it the case, as many argue, that the US empire is now in irretrievable decline? Will China flex its military muscles one day?

London-based and published on every continent, Tariq Ali has been a leading figure of the international left since the 1960s. He is an editor of New Left Review and has written more than 20 books on world history and politics as well as seven novels. Born in Pakistan he attended Oxford University where he became involved in student politics and the movement against the Vietnam war. He is a critic of neoliberal economics and his book The Clash of Fundamentalisms: Crusades, Jihads and Modernity was a response to 9/11. His latest book is The Obama Syndrome: War Abroad.

Lecture 3: Wednesday 23 March
The rise of China
The emergence of China as the world's economic powerhouse has shifted the centre of the global market eastwards. Its growth rates are the envy of elites everywhere, its commodities circulate even in the tiniest Andean street markets, its leaders are courted by governments strong and weak. These developments have ignited endless discussion on the country and its future. The mainstream media are essentially concerned with the extent to which Beijing is catering to the economic needs of Washington, while think-tankers worry that China will sooner or later mount a systematic challenge to the political wisdom of the West.
Academic debate, meanwhile, usually concentrates on the exact nature and the mechanics of contemporary capitalism in China. The optimists of the intellect argue that its essence is determined by the Chinese Communist Party's continued grip on power, seeing China's pro-market turn as a version of the Bolsheviks' New Economic Policy; in more delirious moments, they argue that China's leaders will use their new economic strength to build a socialism purer than anything previously attempted, based on proper development of the productive forces and not the tinpot communes of the past.
Others, by contrast, hold that a more accurate name for the ruling party would not even require a change of initials-Communist is easily replaced with Capitalist. A third view insists that the Chinese future is simply not foreseeable; it is too soon to predict it with any certainty. Whatever the evolution, what is the likely global impact 30 years from now?

Contact info: For further information phone 373 7599 ext 87467.


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