As we face a global pandemic, deepening economic crisis and the spectre of state authoritarianism haunting countries across the globe, we take courage from the many student movements that are at the forefront of demands for democratic change. The new wave of student activism and youth-led movements represent radical visions for racial and gender justice, and are linked to struggles of workers, indigenous peoples’ and other marginalized communities. As these movements face state repression in response to nonviolent protests, the need to strengthen solidarity across borders is all the more urgent.
At this critical juncture, this tricontinental webinar brings together student leaders and educators from Chile, Pakistan and South Africa for a conversation on the lessons learnt from organizing for educational justice. All three countries have been sites of historic student activism in the pre-pandemic period that have continued to organize in the midst of the pandemic in a fresh and renewed manner. What is the nature of student politics today? How are struggles in higher education connected to broader social movements and issues? What are the issues and demands of the movements in Chile, Pakistan and South Africa? How are these movements in higher education organizing amidst the challenges of the global pandemic?