Cancel the Debt: Breaking the Shackles of Global South Indebtedness

Cancel the Debt is Session 2 of the new Intro to Global Economics series, by the DSA IC Climate and Economics Subcommittee. Watch Session 1: “The World We Have,” with Adom Getachew, Jason Hickel and David Kotz.

Sunday, May 22, at 2:30pm ET
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“Debt is neo-colonialism”—these are the words of Marxist revolutionary and President of Burkina Faso Thomas Sankara, proclaimed in his celebrated 1987 call for an African united front against debt. Within a year, he would be dead, in what was likely a Western-backed assassination.

What is government debt? How is debt wielded as a tool of imperialism, from Argentina to Puerto Rico to Zambia? Why was Sankara’s challenge against debt deemed so dangerous that it helped get him killed? And how can we help to break these shackles that bind the Global South and restrict global climate action?

Part 2 of the DSA IC Climate and Economics Subcommittee’s Intro to Global Economics series seeks to answer these questions and more.


  • Heidi Chow, Executive Director, Debt Justice (fka Jubilee Debt Campaign UK)
  • Natalia Renta, Puerto Rican debt expert