In Memoriam Erica Rae (Erica Sufritz) 1958-2024

February 8, 2024

As youth, woman, and educator, Erica Rae (Erica Sufritz) made many contributions to News and Letters Committees since she was a teenager. We will miss the comrade who loved music passionately and sang with the North Shore Choral Society and who cheerfully worked alongside us for revolution for her whole life.

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Ecuador’s Indigenous movement wins concessions

July 2, 2022

On June 30, after 18 days of protests, the government of Ecuador sat at the negotiating table with the leaders of the Indigenous movement. A representative of the Catholic Church asked reluctant Indigenous leaders to sign the agreement prepared by the government.

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Detroit dispatch #3: a pall over the city

April 27, 2020

Two weeks of chilly weather—including a little late-spring snow—combined with increasingly dangerous Presidential “leadership,” a quarter of Michigan’s workers claiming unemployment, and more deaths of friends and relatives has cast a pall over the city and state.

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Youth in action, March-April 2020

March 17, 2020

Youth in action column on the Valentine’s Day’s Fridays 4 Future and Climate Strike protests, and the student group Teens Take Charge’s actions against segregation in New York schools.

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Queer Notes, July-August 2018

July 25, 2018

Queer notes on Delaware’s anti-Transgender legislation; Gay asylum seeker and detainee Udoka Nweke; Lesbian activist Constance Kurt; Aryman Menem, founder of Tea and Talk for Syrian LGBT; and Baltic Pride’s Pride Parade in Riga, Latvia.

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Stop charter schools!

September 6, 2015

The expansion of charter schools comes at the expense of unionized teachers, students and public education. It is a money making venture for the few while destroying public education in the process for the many.

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Sandra Bland speaks for herself

September 3, 2015

Excerpts of videos of Sandra Bland speaking for herself. She made the videos in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. Bland died in Waller County, Texas, after being thrown in jail there for a manufactured traffic violation.

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Letter from Mexico: CNTE teachers’ goal: autonomous learning

August 31, 2015

The National Coordination of Education Workers (CNTE) has been struggling for autonomy, new labor relationships and a non-capitalist educational model. In September 2013, tens of thousands of people—teachers outside the CNTE, students, parents and activists—demonstrated throughout Mexico to show their rejection of the government’s privatizing educational reforms.

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Readers’ Views, November-December 2014, Part 1

November 23, 2014

From the November-December 2014 issue of News & Letters

Readers’ Views, Part 1

WOMEN FIGHT RAPE, HARASSMENT AND ABUSE

When I voted, many posters reminded folks that within 100 feet of the polling place you may not “interrupt” a person, nor “harass” nor even speak about your political views. [=>]

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From the Writings of Raya Dunayevskaya: The Free Speech Movement

July 7, 2014

Suddenly, a generation of new radicals was born to replace “the silent generation” of the 1950s. By winter 1964 a new form of revolt, with a new underlying philosophy, called itself the Free Speech Movement. It becomes necessary to view the moment when the student revolt culminated in a mass sit-in.

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NYC fighting the test

May 21, 2014

Rallies and protests were held at over 30 New York City schools on the first day of state-enforced mandatory standardized English language testing.

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Godless Americana

May 15, 2014

Review by Adele of “Godless Americana: Race and Religious Rebels,” by Sikivu Hutchinson (Infidel Books, 2013).

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Detroit workers fight for jobs and pensions

December 4, 2013

Yesterday, a judge approved Detroit bankruptcy. Emergency manager Kevyn Orr outrageously claimed that the attack on workers’ pensions would be “thoughtful, measured and humane.” Read the News & Letters article for a view from the other side of the class struggle.

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School’s out! Where’s my next job?

July 9, 2013

People may imagine that teachers here hit the beach or kick up their heels poolside, sipping cocktails and working on a suntan. For me and many other teachers, though, Monday will be the kickoff to the summer routine of registering for unemployment benefits and looking for work, as, once again, a year’s contract has come to an end.

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July-August 2013 issue of News & Letters is now online

July 1, 2013

News & Letters, July – August 2013. Lead: Turkey, Syria and Iran at crossroads of world revolt; From the Writings of Raya Dunayevskaya: ‘Russia more than ever full of revolutionaries…’; Editorial: Support striking prisoners!; Essay: Communization theory and its discontents truncate Marx’s dialectic; Workshop Talks: The boss is spying; Revolutionary from Turkey speaks; Brazil’s uprising; Teacher and school struggles; and more…

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Iranian girls learn bodies not sinful

April 2, 2013

In Iran, after the Islamic Revolution the whole issue of sexual health education was forgotten. Years later, a law made it compulsory for all marrying couples to attend a one-hour session at a local clinic on family planning and genetic diseases, including thalassemia— a serous inherited blood disorder.

We hypothesized that offering sexual health education to [=>]

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Save City College of San Francisco!

March 26, 2013

San Francisco–What is happening at City College of San Francisco (CCSF) is something even the most avid conspiracy theorist would find hard to imagine.

Until July 2, 2012, the college had never received any sort of sanctions from the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC). In fact, in 2007, the New York Times named CCSF as [=>]

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Teachers and allies fight restructuring

February 20, 2013

Lake County, Ill.—Recently, teachers in my district received a warning that the district would be undergoing “restructuring” for the 2013-14 school year. When the superintendent visited our school after the winter break, she informed us that scores were still not reaching our goal and that sweeping changes would be necessary.

She needed to submit a “bold [=>]

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Teachers and parents talk education

February 9, 2013

Editor’s note: Below we print excerpts from the News and Letters Committees panel discussion of teachers and education activists on the September strike by members of the Chicago Teachers Union. Daily mass demonstrations and solidarity from teachers and city residents extracted some concessions from the previously intransigent Chicago Public Schools and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Chicago–While [=>]

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January-February 2013 issue of News & Letters is now online

February 2, 2013

Lead
Uprisings in Egypt and Syria confront counter-revolution

Slightly over two years since the beginning of Egypt’s revolution, those heady days can seem distant. The current government of Mohamed Morsi was able to push through a reactionary Constitution. It includes anti-working class Articles allowing for child labor and forced labor, in certain circumstances; limits the right to [=>]

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Readers’ Views, July-August 2012, Part 2

August 15, 2012

RICH AND DUNAYEVSKAYA: A SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP

Thanks for your In Memoriam to Adrienne Rich. It revealed a dimension that many who were appreciative of her poetry and feminism may not have known—Rich’s exploration of Marx’s ideas through her reading of Raya Dunayevskaya. One piece Rich wrote was titled “Dunayevskaya’s Marx.” It was crucial how you [=>]

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Occupy the school—keep Lakeview open!

August 1, 2012

Photo by Urszula Wislanka for News & Letters

Parents, students and teachers have occupied Lakeview Elementary School in Oakland, Calif., since June 15 to keep it open, just one of five schools slated for closure. Under threat from police and the Oakland Unified School District, the protesters, including Occupy Oakland, nevertheless have created social [=>]

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Workshop Talks: Making teachers redundant

February 8, 2012

Workshop Talks
by Htun Lin

Over a billion dollars has been spent in the last decade to comprehensively computerize the workplace at the nation’s largest HMO, where I work. For the executives, it’s as if the line between the virtual and the real has finally been eliminated. Not so for us rank-and-file workers, trying to provide real [=>]

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Stop leeches bleeding public schools dry

December 21, 2011

Stop leeches bleeding public schools dry

New York City—”The Trial Is On! The People of NYC are gathering to put the perpetrators of education crimes and human and civil rights violations against our children on trial—in our own People’s Court!” On Oct. 15, the Coalition for Public Education (www.for­publiced.org) took testimony from parents, teachers and [=>]

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Chicago city workers defy new thug mayor

December 13, 2011

From the November-December 2011 issue of News & Letters:

Chicago—Mayor Rahm Emanuel has made no se­cret of his contempt for City workers and his desire to weaken their unions. His attitude was perfectly cap­tured in early September when he screamed “F—k you, Lewis!” at Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) President Karen Lewis during a meeting [=>]

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Readers’ Views, September-October 2011

October 7, 2011

From the September-October 2011 issue of News & Letters:

Readers’ Views

Contents:

  • REVOLUTION AND COUNTER-REVOLUTION: ARAB SPRING AS CROSSROADS IN HISTORY
  • KARL MARX AND WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
  • REMEMBERING CHRISTINA SANTIAGO
  • THELONIOUS MONK
  • CANADA AS ‘CONTESTATAIRE’ SOCIETY
  • MAN-MADE DISASTERS: NUCLEAR POWER AND WORLD WAR
  • LABOR STRUGGLES IN 2011
  • WHY WRITE FOR N&L?
  • VOICES FROM BEHIND THE BARS

REVOLUTION AND COUNTER-REVOLUTION: ARAB SPRING AS CROSSROADS IN HISTORY

The West supports any revolution where they [=>]

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World in View: Students awaken Chile

September 19, 2011

From the September-October 2011 issue of News & Letters:

World in View: Students awaken Chile

Hundreds of thousands of students–teenagers, and college students–have taken to the streets of Santiago, the capital, and the cities of Concepción, Valparaíso and Temuco, among others, to demand a decent public education. Hundreds of schools have been taken over. Students have been [=>]

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Needed: debate on education in era of cutbacks

September 17, 2011

Essay
by Erica Rae

From college level all the way down to pre-school, education is in crisis across the U.S. Teachers are made the scapegoats for why students are not “measuring up” to keep our country competitive in a global market that is falling apart across the globe. But, what is the reality?

At the college level: many students [=>]

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