New book analyzes World Social Forum

Author: Arts and Letters

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Jackie Smith, associate professor of sociology and peace studies at the University of Notre Dame, is the co-author of a new book recently released by Paradigm Publishers.

“Global Democracy and the World Social Forums” offers an analysis of one of the most important political developments of our time – the huge annual gatherings of social change activists collectively known as the World Social Forum (WSF).

The book “is a real contribution to the worldwide struggle for global justice,” according to Yale University sociologist Immanuel Wallersteen. “It offers readers . . . insight into what WSF has been, what its internal debates and difficulties are, and how we might move forward.”

Since 2001, the World Social Forum has drawn hundreds of thousands of people to annual meetings in Brazil, India, Venezuela, Mali, Pakistan and Kenya. This summer, Smith and another Notre Dame sociologist, Dan Myers, along with several undergraduate and graduate student-researchers, traveled to Atlanta to join more than 15,000 participants at the first United States Social Forum.

Faculty and students will report on their experiences at the U.S. Social Forum at 4:15p.m. Tuesday (Sept. 25) in the Hesburgh Center auditorium. The panel presentation is free and open to the public. It is sponsored by the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, Center for the Study of Social Movements and Social Change, Center for Social Concerns, Department of Sociology, Gender Studies Program, Kellogg Institute for International Studies, and the Master of Nonprofit Administration program in the Mendoza College of Business.

For more information:

Contact: Jackie Smith, 574-631-2640,

Originally published by Joan Fallon at on September 25, 2007.