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Newsletter 27 January 2023

Dear readers,


This last year has been a difficult one, marked by conflict, social and environmental crises, the continued rise of the far right in Europe and the ongoing impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. But even – or especially – in challenging times, it is vital to continue to voice and refine left-wing political ideas and calls for action. With this in mind, the European Left (EL) met for its seventh party congress in Vienna in December 2022. Titled ‘Peace, Bread, Roses’, the conference saw delegates agree on nine new demands to bring about radical change in Europe. May we work collectively in 2023 to make some of these demands for a solidarity-based, sustainable and fair society a reality.


The EL’s congress also provided a fitting farewell to former President Heinz Bierbaum and saw the election of a new executive board as well as a new president. Walter Baier, a long-standing member of our executive board and political coordinator, a well-regarded comrade and colleague, has been elected president of the European Left. During the party congress, our  Co-PresidentMarga Ferré  paid tribute to Baier and his commitment to transform! europe as well as the European Left. A transcript of her speech, also including an outline of transform!´s future work, is featured in this newsletter.

Martin Schirdewan, Co-Chair of DIE LINKE as well as of The Left in the European Parliament, also gave a speech discussing the left’s political approaches and struggles in which he stressed the importance of taking a collective approach in the battle against neoliberalism, fascism and climate change.


2023 will no doubt be another challenging year. Less than a century ago, the world saw Hitler and his fascist party rise to power in Germany. The conditions are still ripe for such ideology to take hold once again. Not only in Europe but around the globe, the authoritarian and the far right are openly challenging the legitimacy of their country’s democratic institutions, as shown by the recent storming of the Brazilian Congress, Supreme Court and presidential palace of newly elected President Lula da Silva.


The war in Ukraine drags on and has already caused devastating destruction. At present, it is almost impossible to calculate the ultimate human, social, economic, environmental, and political cost. It is highly likely that we are witnessing the emergence of a completely new type of global system. As we are already seeing, this shift entails many  countries  rearming as well as the militarisation of society and political discourse. The left is torn about how to respond to this new conflict, with views ranging from calls for an immediate ceasefire and negotiations to increased funding for NATO and continued fighting until Russia’s defeat. At the same time, the social and economic impacts of the war demand active, solidarity-based politics on a pan-European scale. Is the European Left up to the challenge?

Persistently high inflation across Europe and the refusal to adopt tax reforms that would have a real redistributive effect is causing increased social and political polarisation. Developing socially sustainable alternatives together with a wide range of social actors remains the most pressing challenge.


You can find all of these issues and more in our upcoming 2023 newsletters.


Our current newsletter also contains links to our most recent publications as well as information on upcoming events organised by  transform! europe and our partner organisations.


We hope you enjoy reading this issue.
Štefica Gazibara, web editor, transform! europe

Featured Article
"Our Challenge and Mission Over the Coming Years is to Share Knowledge to Make us Stronger!"
By Marga Ferré
Marga Ferré, Co-President of transform! europe, in her speech at the 7th Party Congress of the European Left (EL), outlined the importance of interplay between science and political activism in the struggle for social justice and peace and a feminist and ecological Europe. [read more... ]
"The Left Remains Firmly United to Build a Europe That Works for the People and for the Planet!"
This is what Martin Schirdewan, Co-President of DIE LINKE party as well as of the Left Group in the European Parliament, particularly stressed in his speech at the 7th Party Congress of the European Left (EL) in Vienna in December 2022. Read the full speech here. [read more... ]
15 February 2023 – 15 February 2023
Call for Papers - Deadline 15 Feb 2023
Conference “100 Shades of the EU: Political Economy of the EU Peripheries Between Pandemic and War”
We cordially invite you to submit your panel proposals for the conference "100 Shades of the EU: The Political Economy of the EU Peripheries Between Pandemic and War” organised by transform! europe in cooperation with Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung focusing on political economy of the EU seen from the... [read more... ]
15 February 2023 – 15 February 2023
Webinar Series
Christian and Marxist Approaches on Peace Ethics - Part 1
In this Webinar Series, together with our partner organisation Dialop, we want to explore the common ground and differences between Christian and Marxist approaches to Peace Ethics. Join us for the first webinar! [read more... ]
16 November 2023 – 18 November 2023
Save the Date
International Marxist-Feminist Conference: Body, Work and Care in Contemporary Digital Capitalism
The next International Marxist Feminist Conference will take place 16-18 November 2023 in Warsaw and will focus on feminist theoretical, political, cultural, and artistic responses to current crises. [read more... ]
The Far-Right in the European Parliament
By Pierre Balas
The aim of this study is to examine the far-right in the EP from 2019 until today (September 2022) from different angles and to provide answers to the questions regarding what happened after the 2019 elections, how the European far-right is organised in the EP and what the connecting factors and... [read more... ]
The EU Recovery and Resilience Programmes after COVID-19
By Roland Kulke, Matteo Gaddi Eleftheria Angeli Mauricio Rezende Dias Ilona Švihlíková Michał Menes Pauline Debanes Michael Schwan Sara Murawski Zoltán Pogátsa Anna Pixer Karen Helveg Petersen Herman Beun
This eDossier summarises studies from all parts of Europe that aim to analyse how the discussions on the return of austerity policies are being conducted and whether a care society, a climate policy is in the discourse in the respective countries. And last but not least, which left alternatives to... [read more... ]
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