Ida Susser: From the underground resistance under Franco to Podemos, with Vicente Navarro

Vicente Navarro is a leading analyst of the history and origins of the financial crisis in Spain (and Europe in general) and an economic adviser to Podemos. His book There Are Alternatives (Hay Alternativas: Propuestas para Crear Empleo y Bienestar Social en España), written with economists Juan Torres and Alberto Garzón, became an inspiration to the Indignados movement. Asked by Podemos, Navarro and Torres developed a new economic policy outlining the challenges of the current era and economic strategies that serve the people rather than the corporations. Podemos distributed this publication under the title An Economic Project for the People (Un Proyecto Económico para la Gente). Presented by Pablo Iglesias and the authors, the project became a major media event, denounced by banks and corporate representatives all over Europe and acclaimed by many throughout Spain.

Navarro was a member of the resistance against Francisco Franco, and he trained as a doctor in Barcelona, Spain, and later on in public health in Edinburgh, Scotland. He later came to the United States where, on the faculty of Johns Hopkins University, he founded the International Journal of Health Services (IJHS) and published extensively on the structuring of health services under capitalism. In its focus on the political economy of health, IJHS became a crucial site of publication for critical medical anthropology, even before there were any medical anthropology journals. After Franco died, Navarro divided his work between the United States and Spain.

Ida Susser is professor of anthropology at Hunter College and CUNY Graduate Center and has conducted ethnographic research in the United States, Southern Africa and Puerto Rico, with respect to urban social movements and the urban commons,  gender, the global AIDS epidemic, and environmental movements.

Cite as: Susser, Ida. 2015. “An interview with Vicente Navarro: From the underground resistance under Franco to Podemos.” FocaalBlog, 20 July.