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“The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class” | Guy Standing talks with Yanis Varoufakis

31/10/2022 // 19:00 21:00 EET

Monday 31Oct 2022, 19:00.

On the occasion of the translation of his book “The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class” into Greek, as part of the new publishing series of mέta | Centre for Postcapitalist Civilisation at Topos Publications, author Guy Standing, professor at SOAS, talks with Yanis Varoufakis about the socio-political challenges of the diffusion of labour precarity.

Sotiris Mitralexis, PhD in Political Science, Director of the Academic Department of the mέta | Centre for Postcapitalist Civilisation, introduces and moderates.

Plyfa Industrial Park, 39 Korytsas Street, Athens 104 47

Free entrance | registration

Simultaneous interpretation from English.

The term precariat is a commonplace of political and social analysis today – yet the book that introduced it had not been previously translated into our language. First published in 2011, Guy Standing’s The Precariat is the first account of an emerging class of people facing unprecedented insecurity, moving in and out of precarious jobs that give zero prospects and little meaning to their lives as well. In addition to the miserable life that the present mutation of capitalism has in store for the precariat, the internal divisions of the precariat have led to greater overall social instability, e.g., by targeting immigrants or other vulnerable groups and strengthening political extremism. Standing argues for a new politics that puts the fears and aspirations of the precariat at the heart of a progressive strategy of redistribution and income security.

The translation of Guy Standing’s book into Greek, as part of the recently launched series of mέta | Center for Postcapitalist Civilisation at Topos Publications, is accompanied by a new preface in which the author discusses the recent political developments of the Covid-19 pandemic and its implications for the precariat.

After ten years of economic crisis and memorandum, two years of pandemic and the war emergency that is currently spreading with increasing consequences for energy, inflation, expensiveness, and, by extension, work, “The Precariat” could not be more relevant, – in today’s Greece, as well.

Guy Standing is an economist, professor and SOAS research fellow at the University of London. He is also an Honorary Professor at the University of Sydney, a PhD from the University of Cambridge, a Fellow of the British Academy of Social Sciences and the Royal Society of Arts, co-founder and Honorary Co-Chair of the Global Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), a member of the Progressive Economy Forum, and a member of the Advisory Board of the mέta | Centre for Postcapitalist Civilisation. In 2016-19 he was an advisor to the UK opposition Treasury candidate John McDonnell. He served as director of the Socio-Economic Security Programme of the International Labour Organization. He advised a number of international agencies, was director of research for Nelson Mandela’s Market and Labour Policies Committee as chairman, and implemented his basic income proposals in a number of pilot programmes.

His books include “The Precariat” ( translated into 25 languages), “The Corruption of Capitalism” (third edition, 2021), “Basic Income: How to Achieve It” (in Greek from Papasotiriou Publications), “Plunder of the Commons” (2019), and “The Blue Commons: Rescuing the Economy of the Sea” (2022). In 2020 he collaborated with Massive Attack on a video based on his book “Battling Eight Giants: Basic Income Now” (2020).

mέta | Center for Postcapitalist Civilisation was founded in 2020 as international research and artistic organisation, affiliated with the MέPA25 party, the DiEM25 movement, and Progressive International. It aims to map emancipatory alternatives to the post-capitalist dystopia that opens up before us. The mέta’s actions so far include the publication of working papers, the creation of a special editorial series in “Topos” publications, the holding of workshops and roundtables, film screenings in the context of mέta-cinema and the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the production of a weekly radio show and the mέta-boulouki artistic tour in the summers of 2021 and 2022.