UW School of Music: Carillon TowerEstablished in the Sociology Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1984, the A. E. Havens Center for Social Justice is dedicated to promoting critical intellectual reflection and exchange, both within the academy as well as between it and the broader society. The Center is named in honor of the late Professor of Rural Sociology, A. Eugene Havens, whose life and work embodied the combination of progressive political commitment and scholarly rigor that the Center encourages.

The traditional tasks of critical social thought have been to analyze the sources of inequality and injustice in existing social arrangements, to suggest both practical and utopian alternatives to those arrangements, and to identify and learn from the many social movements seeking progressive social and political change. These tasks are as relevant today as ever. Indeed, we face a variety of challenges, both new and enduring, that demand creative critical reflection. These include the increasingly integrated and global character of capitalist economic development, the durability of racial and gender oppressions, the threats of global environmental catastrophe, and the failure of many traditional models of progressive reform.

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Upcoming events

Forward 2017

Where do we Go from Here? Understanding the Current Crisis & Building Social Justice in the Midwest

Where Do We Go from Here?, the Forward 2017 event, takes place June 2-3 at Edgewood College.
Forward is an annual gathering of community activists, students, and educators committed to social justice. 

This is a participant driven forum that builds on three decades of RadFest gatherings hosted by the Havens Center.

In keeping with the Wisconsin Idea, Forward provides an open space for freewheeling discussion, strengthening alliances and networks, and developing visions and strategies for progressive social, economic, and political change. 

This year’s gathering, which will take place on the weekend of June 2-3 at Edgewood College on the shores of Lake Wingra in Madison, WI, will devote substantial attention to understanding the current crisis and its implications for the struggle for social justice in the Midwest. 

FORWARD 2017 PROGRAM
FORWARD 2017 REGISTRATION

1917-2017: Wars & Revolutions

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Tariq Ali
"1917-2017: Wars and Revolutions"
OCTOBER 2017

TARIQ ALI is a writer and filmmaker. He has written more than two dozen books on world history and politics, and seven novels (translated into over a dozen languages) as well as scripts for the stage and screen. He is an editor of New Left Review and lives in London. His nonfiction books include Pirates Of The Caribbean, Conversations with Edward Said, Bush in Babylon, Clash of Fundamentalisms, The Obama Syndrome, and The Extreme Centre: A Warning. His most recent book, The Dilemmas of Lenin: Terrorism, War, Empire, Love, Revolution, is due out in April 2017.