Caroline Shenaz Hossein presents "Beyond Racial Capitalism: Co-Operatives in the African Diaspora" in conversation w/Taji Amani

Caroline Shenaz Hossein presents "Beyond Racial Capitalism: Co-Operatives in the African Diaspora" in conversation w/Taji Amani

This event has already happened.

Tuesday, May 21st 2024
7:00 pm
Red Emma's
Shining a light on the Black diaspora's contributions to the co-operative sector which is often missing discussion of the social and solidarity economy.

Knowledge-making in the field of alternative economies has limited the inclusion of Black and racialized people's experience. In Beyond Racial Capitalism the goal is close that gap in development through a detailed analysis of cases in about a dozen countries where Black people live and turn to co-operatives to manage systemic exclusion. Most cases focus on how people use group methodology for social finance. However, financing is not the sole objective for many of the Black people who engage in collective business forms; it is about the collective and the making of a Black social economy.

Systemic racism and anti-Black exclusion create an environment where pooling resources, in kind and money, becomes a way to cope and to resist an oppressive system. This book examines co-operatives in the context of racial capitalism-a concept of political scientist Cedric J. Robinson's that has meaning for the African diaspora who must navigate, often secretly and in groups, the landmines in business and society. Understanding business exclusion in the various cases enables appreciation of the civic contributions carried out by excluded racial minorities. These social innovations by Black people living outside of Africa who build co-operative economies go largely unnoticed. If they are noted, they are demoted to an “informal” activity and rationalized as having limited potential to bring about social change. The sheer determination of Black diaspora people to organize and build co-operatives that are explicitly anti-racist and rooted in mutual aid and the collective is an important lesson in making business ethical and inclusive.

"This is an important book on an often neglected subject. The authors do an excellent job of providing hidden histories and highlighting marginalized analyses and ways of knowing. It definitely should be of interest especially to people studying cooperative economics, solidarity economics, Black political economy, community economic development, and Black Studies and settler colonialism more broadly." —Jessica Gordon-Nembhard, Professor of Community Justice and Social Economic Development, Department of Africana Studies at John Jay College, CUNY

Caroline Shenaz Hossein holds a Canada Research Chair in Africana Development and Feminist Political Economy and is Associate Professor of Global Development and Political Science at the University of Toronto and founder of the Diverse Solidarity Economies (DiSE) Collective. She serves on the board of International Association of Feminist Economics, Guelph Institute of Development Studies, and editorial boards of the U.N. Task Force for the Social and Solidarity Economy and Kerala's Journal of Politics and Society. Follow her Twitter @carolinehossein.

Born and raised in San Diego, California, Taji Amani relocated to his father’s hometown of Baltimore, Maryland in 2016. In 2017, he transitioned from digital strategy into financial services, specifically microfinance, small business technical assistance and private wealth management. At the Baltimore Roundtable for Economic Democracy (BRED), Taji works with seasoned business owners who are transferring ownership of their businesses to their employees. Taji introduces these owners and employees to BRED and provides advice on the financial and governance considerations behind such succession planning. Recognizing the relationships between the distribution of power in the private sector and that of the public sector, Taji is deeply motivated by grassroots movements to realize economic democracy and deeper, political democracy.

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