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Trade in turmoil: A chance for justice?

There was a time when trade was a slow-moving tanker of a topic – what we, at New Internationalist, would call a ‘solid development issue’.

Not in these times of Brexit turmoil and a Trumpian trade war with China. As we go to press, there is little certainty about how events will pan out over the next couple of hours – let alone months.

The themes, and language, being used in relation to these trade-related crises are extreme and indicative. ‘Betrayal’, ‘rape’, ‘theft’, ‘cliff-edge’, ‘crash-out’, ‘blood on the streets’, ‘economic decline’, ‘disaster’, ‘a great unravelling’, ‘war’...

In this magazine we delve into the thicket of global trade – interviewing and consulting experts and campaigners from around the world. Our aim is not just to make sense of what’s going on, but also to dig into what’s missing from the blow-by-blow reporting in the media; to examine the underlying causes of the current crises; the important impacts of the free-trade system that just aren’t being discussed; and the implications for citizens in countries that aren’t powerful players on the world stage. And, in true New Internationalist fashion, this issue does not stop at reporting what is – but goes the extra mile to envisage how things could be with a 14-point plan on what a better, fairer, more sustainable trading system might look like.


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Included in this issue

What if...we reduced carbon emissions to zero by 2025?

Hazel Healy sketches out a radical scenario of carbon cold-turkey.

Remembering Pete Seeger

Mark Engler reflects on the life of Pete Seeger - an American musician, patriot and dissident.

Mixed media: film

Malcolm Lewis reviews Burning, directed and co-written by Chang-dong Lee; Green Book, directed and co-written by Peter Farrelly.

Mixed media spotlight: Sebastián Lelio

Chilean-Argentine director Sebastian Lelio speaks to Malcolm Lewis about writing complex, engaging characters and film as a '...

Should I accept inherited property?

Ethical and political dilemmas abound these days. Seems like we’re all in need of a New Internationalist perspective. Enter...

Radical lessons from bird watchers

Meet the long-tailed tit: a one-species rebuke to ruthless Darwinism. Tom Whyman reports.

India: men and #MeToo

Why are Indian men feeling unsafe? Nilanjana Bhowmick reacts to the 'unease' expressed by Indian men in today's #MeToo era.

Japan’s firewall against populism

Despite populism being rife everywhere else, Japan has refused to succumb. Are there lessons to be learned? asks Tina Burrett.

Should religion play a role in politics?

Dawn Foster and Yasmin Alibhai-Brown dispute whether or not religion should play a role in politics.

Mixed media: music

Louise Gray reviews the latest music releases by London-based quartet Skunk Anasie, and Bollywood star Farhan Akhtar.  

The Interview: Soni Sori

Soni Sori, an award-winning human rights defender, speaks to Dilnaz Boga about fighting for justice for sexually abused Adivasi...

View from Africa: Cameroon

Here today, here tomorrow - Nanjala Nyabola questions Cameroon's never-ending presidential terms.

Past issues

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