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ANNUAL GRIP LECTURE: Politics of Inequality and the Illiberal Right

24 April 2024 @ 14:00 - 16:00 CEST



24 April 2024
14:00 - 16:00 CEST


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Ulrikes aula and Zoom
Professor Keysers gate 1
Bergen, Vestland
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The Politics of Inequality and the Rise of the Illiberal Right: A Global Perspective


The second Annual GRIP Lecture  will be given on Wednesday April 24 by the distinguished international sociologist, Walden Bello. The event is free and without registration. The lecture will also be streamed online (link to be posted soon). The theme of this year’s lecture is “The Politics of Inequality and the Rise of the Illiberal Right: A Global Perspective”.

Walden Bello is renowned for his insightful analysis of the politics of inequality. He is a longstanding leader of the policy think-tank ‘Focus on the Global South’ and the Center for Economic and Policy Research, he holds a professorship in sociology at the State University of New York at Binghamton University (SUNY), and has been actively involved in progressive political movements in the Philippines and on the global stage.

Walden Bello’s lecture will be commented upon by Siri Gloppen (University of Bergen, Centre on Law and Social Transformation) and Geir Henning Presterudstuen (University of Bergen).

Inequality and the Illiberal Right

In his forthcoming lecture, Walden Bello will embark on a comprehensive exploration of the ascent of the illiberal Right, both in the Global South and Global North. The lecture’s focal point will be an examination of the multifaceted ways in which global transformations within the framework of capitalism intersect with the pervasive inequalities that serve as both catalysts and focal points of right-wing authoritarianism. Central to this discourse is the intricate interplay of class, ideology, and power, set within the context of the intertwined yet uneven trajectories of world history.

During Professor Bello’s lecture, attendees can expect a profound exploration of various sub-themes that hold significant relevance in the current global landscape.

Global Pervasiveness of the Illiberal Right: Professor Bello will rigorously examine whether the rise of the illiberal Right is an all-encompassing global phenomenon, investigating its potential inevitability.

Comparative Analysis of Authoritarian Processes: This segment of the lecture will closely scrutinise the parallel and contrasting elements within authoritarian processes in the Global North and Global South. An emphasis will be placed on dissecting the shared conditions that enable such processes, as well as the roles played by inequalities and class actors within this framework.

Relevance of Geographical Categorisation: Professor Bello will critically assess the applicability and constraints of categorising regions as the Global South and Global North in the context of these developments.

Comparability of Right-Wing Mobilisations: The lecture will delve deep into the intricacies of right-wing mobilisations in Eastern Europe and the Western world, probing the interplay of class, ideology, power, and local historical contexts in these diverse cases.

Generalisation vs Local Specifics: The audience will gain insight into the prospects of identifying overarching patterns and principles amid the diversity of fragmented local narratives. Professor Bello will address whether there is potential for generalisation and universalisation across various cases.

Global Capitalism and the Illiberal Right: Lastly, the lecture will explore the hypothesis that the seemingly synchronised global ascent of the illiberal Right may be symptomatic of a crisis within global capitalism. Professor Bello will offer an assessment of whether this phenomenon signifies a broader crisis within the global capitalist system and, if so, how this crisis manifests.


Annual GRIP Symposium

Following the Annual Lecture, we invite you to participate in the Annual Symposium scheduled for Thursday, 25th April 09.00 – 17.30. The symposium gathers a range of prominent scholars from humanities and social sciences who will engage with the theme of this year’s lecture. It is an excellent opportunity to engage in deeper discussions and exchange insights on these critical global issues.

Please note that registration is not required for the Annual Lecture, but it is required for the Annual Symposium. You can read more about the Annual Symposium here: Annual GRIP Symposium: Politics of Inequality and the Illiberal Right – GRIP (gripinequality.org)

The events are organised with the financial support of the German Federal Foreign Office.

GRIP Secretariat | Faculty of Social Sciences | University of Bergen | PO Box 7802 | 5020 Bergen, Norway
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