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Race, capital, and the politics of solidarity: radical internationalism in the 21st century

Danewid, Ida (2018) Race, capital, and the politics of solidarity: radical internationalism in the 21st century. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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Identification Number: 10.21953/lse.0lvyvg8abxbw


This thesis interrogates the absence of questions of race, colonialism, and their contemporary legacies in the philosophical literature on global justice and cosmopolitan ethics. What are the ethical, political, and material consequences of these “unspeakable things unspoken”, and what would it mean for cosmopolitanism to take seriously the problem of the global colour line? The thesis provides a tentative answer to these questions through a close engagement with contemporary debates about the meaning and purpose of international solidarity. It demonstrates that critical and liberal approaches often help reproduce and legitimise, rather than challenge and transcend, the current unjust and unequal racialized global order. Drawing on Cedric Robinson and the literature on racial capitalism, it interrogates how solidarity can be decolonised and reconceived so as to better attend to the materiality of the global colour line. Through a close reading of the European migrant crisis, recent forms of Black-Palestinian solidarity, and the ongoing struggle for decolonisation in South Africa, it identifies an alternative internationalist imaginary that grows out of the solidarities forged in the struggle against imperialism, patriarchy, and racial capitalism. This is a radicalised and decolonised emancipatory project which retrieves the idea of universal history and total critique, but does so without invoking Eurocentric ideas of progress and teleology. In an era of Trump, Brexit, and global fascist resurgence—where the “white working class” frequently is juxtaposed with “immigrants”, and identity politics blamed for the demise of the organised Left—such an internationalist vision is urgently needed.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2018 Ida Danewid
Library of Congress subject classification: J Political Science > JZ International relations
Sets: Departments > International Relations
Supervisor: Hoffman, Mark and Ainley, Kirsten

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