Blog post

VIDEO: Liberalism as "grotesquely limited:" Vijay Prashad discusses politics and The Poorer Nations

Jisu Kim23 August 2013

Introduced as “quickly becoming one of the Left’s better-known public intellectuals,” Vijay Prashad was recently interviewed for a four-part video segment on Reality Asserts Itself with Paul Jay. Prashad and Jay cover a broad range of political issues, initiating the discussion by expounding how the conditions of Prashad’s childhood shaped his realization of liberalism as a “grotesquely limited” worldview and his adoption of a Marxist political horizon. Watch the first part of the interview below, and continue on for further links.

Working through topics such the structural inequalities of property ownership and Private First Class Manning’s court-martial in light of the Nuremberg Charter, Prashad and Jay conclude by tackling the state of international law today. They outline the problematic, erratic ways in which “the responsibility to protect” is enacted in the name of global human rights, and how these practices often fail to live up to their ideals.

Also available through C-SPAN’s BookTV is Prashad’s recent book talk for The Poorer Nations, hosted at Brecht Forum with Verso editor Andy Hsaio. At the center of The Poorer Nations is a paradigm-shifting new look at 20th-century history, detailing the rise and fall of neoliberal prospects for the Global South. Writing, however, from the South’s perspective, the book takes a firm stand against long-standing ideas such as Henry Kissinger’s, that “What happens in the South is of no importance”. The Poorer Nations has been hailed by contemporaries like Uruguayan journalist Eduardo Galeano as an essential antidote to “uncover the shining worlds hidden history and dominant media.”

Parts one, two, three, and four of the interview are available in full online on the Real News Network. The C-SPAN recording is also available in full at their website