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Occupation and Cooperation: Strategies for Socialism in Brazil’s Landless Workers’ Movement

March 31, 2022 @ 12:30 pm - 1:45 pm

Bruce Gilbert, Professor of Philosophy and Liberal Arts, Bishop’s University, Sherbrooke, Quebec

Marxist politics has often focused on seizing state power through revolutionary or electoral means, producing mostly failures of great bloodshed and violence, coup d’états and weak social democratic policies. In Brazil, the Landless Workers Movement (MST) has adopted a different strategy to build socialism: tracts of underutilized land “occupied” by hundreds of impoverished and marginalized families and turned into farming cooperatives that typically have their own schools and health care facilities. The MST has its own university near São Paulo for training activists from around the world. The MST’s strategy has been, by most measures, enormously successful, with 1.5 million members and thousands of cooperative settlements in Brazil. Prof. Bruce Gilbert, who is the Coordinator of the Social Justice and Citizenship Minor at Bishop’s University, will also deliver a Department of Philosophy Lecture during his visit to UMaine.

Go to for the Zoom link to join all programs and for more information about the Spring series


Bangor Room, Memorial Union
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469 United States


Socialist and Marxist Studies