Organize!
234 pages
English

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234 pages
English

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Description

What are the ways forward for organizing for progressive social change in an era of unprecedented economic, social, and ecological crises? How do political activists build power and critical analysis in their daily work for change?


Grounded in struggles in Canada, the United States, Aotearoa/New Zealand, as well as transnational activist networks, Organize! Building from the Local for Global Justice links local organizing with global struggles to make a better world. In over twenty chapters written by a diverse range of organizers, activists, academics, lawyers, artists, and researchers, this book weaves a rich and varied tapestry of dynamic strategies for struggle. From community-based labor organizing strategies among immigrant workers to mobilizing psychiatric survivors, from arts and activism for Palestine to organizing in support of Indigenous Peoples, the authors reflect critically on the tensions, problems, limits, and gains inherent in a diverse range of organizing contexts and practices. The book also places these processes in historical perspective, encouraging us to use history to shed light on contemporary injustices and how they can be overcome. Written in accessible language, Organize! will appeal to college and university students, activists, organizers and the wider public.


Contributors include: Aziz Choudry, Jill Hanley, Eric Shragge, Devlin Kuyek, Kezia Speirs, Evelyn Calugay, Anne Petermann, Alex Law, Jared Will, Radha D’Souza, Edward Ou Jin Lee, Norman Nawrocki, Rafeef Ziadah, Maria Bargh, Dave Bleakney, Abdi Hagi Yusef, Mostafa Henaway, Emilie Breton, Sandra Jeppesen, Anna Kruzynski, Rachel Sarrasin, Dolores Chew, David Reville, Kathryn Church, Brian Aboud, Joey Calugay, Gada Mahrouse, Harsha Walia, Mary Foster, Martha Stiegman, Robert Fisher, Yuseph Katiya, and Christopher Reid.


Sujets

Informations

Publié par
Date de parution 30 mai 2012
Nombre de lectures 0
EAN13 9781604867268
Langue English

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0025€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.

Exrait

"This superb collection needs to find its way into the hands of every activist and organizer for social justice. In a series of dazzling essays, an amazing group of radical organizers reflect on what it means to build movements in which people extend control over their lives. These analyses are jampacked with insights about antiracist, anticolonial, working-class, and anticapitalist organizing. Perhaps most crucially, the authors lay down a key challenge for all activists for social justice: to take seriously the need to build mass movements for social change. Don’t just read this exceptionally timely and important work use it too." David McNally, professor of political science, York University, Toronto, author of Global Slump: The Economics and Politics of Crisis and Resistance and Another World Is Possible: Globalization and Anti-Capitalism, and activist in socialist, antipoverty, and migrant-justice movements
"Any book called Organize! has me from hello, but this one brings serious thought and analysis to what it really means to organize and why it is essential to build a base for the work in order to fashion both power and victories. It is also refreshing to read new, vibrant reports of organizing and shine needed light on the exciting work being done both by veteran and younger activists and organizers." Wade Rathke, chief organizer of ACORN International, and formerly founder and chief organizer of ACORN in the United States
"To understand the world, you have to try to change it. That’s what the authors of this fine set of essays and meditations have taken to heart. The result? Some of the best insights on power, organizing, and revolution to be found in Canada or beyond." Raj Patel, author of The Value of Nothing: How to Reshape Market Society and Redefine Democracy

Organize! Building from the Local for Global Justice Aziz Choudry, Jill Hanley, and Eric Shragge © 2012 by Aziz Choudry, Jill Hanley, and Eric Shragge This edition © 2012 by PM Press
ISBN: 978-1-60486-433-5 Library of Congress Control Number: 2011939668
Cover by Josh MacPhee/ Justseeds.org Interior design by briandesign
10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
PM Press PO Box 23912 Oakland, CA 94623 www.pmpress.org
Printed in the USA on recycled paper, by the Employee Owners of Thomson-Shore in Dexter, Michigan. www.thomsonshore.com
First published in Canada in 2012 by Between the Lines, 401 Richmond St. W., Studio 277, Toronto, ON M5V 3A8, Canada. 1-800-718-7201. www.btlbooks.com
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be photocopied, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission of Between the Lines, or (for photocopying in Canada only) Access Copyright, 1 Yonge Street, Suite 1900, Toronto, Ontario, M5E 1E5.
Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication
Organize! : building from the local for global justice / eds., Aziz Choudry, Jill Hanley, Eric Shragge.
Copublished by PM Press. Includes bibliographical references. Also issued in electronic format. ISBN 978-1-771130-04-2
1. Social change. 2. Social action. 3. Social justice. 4. Political participation. I. Choudry, Aziz, 1966- II. Hanley, Jill, 1973- III. Shragge, Eric, 1948-
HM831.O74 2012 303.4 C2011-908034-6
Between the Lines gratefully acknowledges assistance for its publishing activities from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the Government of Ontario through the Ontario Book Publishers Tax Credit program, and the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund.
Contents
Introduction: Organize! Looking Back, Thinking Ahead Aziz Choudry, Jill Hanley, and Eric Shragge
Activist Research: Mapping Power Relations, Informing Struggles Aziz Choudry and Devlin Kuyek
Research Partnerships and Local Community Organizing: Reflections by Evelyn Calugay Kezia Speirs
Fundraising: Politics and Strategies Anne Petermann
Some Comments on Law and Organizing Alex Law and Jared Will
Rights, Action, Change: Organize for What? Radha D’Souza
Escape, Retreat, Revolt: Queer People of Color Living in Montreal Using Photovoice as a Tool for Community Organizing Edward Ou Jin Lee
Listen to the Music: Work the Music, Organize the Community Norman Nawrocki
Art for Palestine: "Renarrating" History and the Present Rafeef Ziadah
Community Organizing: Maori Movement-Building Maria Bargh
Solidarity, Real and Imagined: Lessons from the 1991 Postal Strike Dave Bleakney and Abdi Hagi Yusef
Immigrant Worker Organizing in a Time of Crisis: Adapting to the New Realities of Class and Resistance Mostafa Henaway
Prefigurative Self-Governance and Self-Organization: The Influence of Antiauthoritarian (Pro)Feminist, Radical Queer, and Antiracist Networks in Quebec Émilie Breton, Sandra Jeppesen, Anna Kruzynski, and Rachel Sarrasin (Research Group on Collective Autonomy)
Making Our Space, Taking Our Place: Lessons From Migrant Women’s Organizing in Montreal Dolores Chew
Mad Activism Enters Its Fifth Decade: Psychiatric Survivor Organizing in Toronto David Reville and Kathryn Church
Organizing and the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) Strategy: The Turn to BDS in Palestine Solidarity Politics in Montreal Brian Aboud
Muhammad Ali and the Moon Migrants Joey Calugay
Solidarity Tourism and International Development Internships: Some Critical Reflections Gada Mahrouse
Moving Beyond a Politics of Solidarity toward a Practice of Decolonization Harsha Walia
Organizing in Solidarity with "Threats to National Security": The Campaign against Immigration "Security Certificates" Mary Foster
Confessions of a Reluctant Food Activist Martha Stiegman
Building Power Beyond the Grassroots: ACORN Matters Robert Fisher
Urban Neoliberalism and the Right to the City Alliance Yuseph Katiya and Christopher Reid
Book Contributors
Introduction Organize! Looking Back, Thinking Ahead
Aziz Choudry, Jill Hanley, and Eric Shragge
We are putting this book together shortly after hundreds of thousands of Egyptian people occupied Cairo’s Tahrir Square and the roads surrounding Egypt’s parliament and government buildings, and trade unions began strikes. For some weeks, the world watched the power of mobilized citizens demanding an end to a Western-backed brutally repressive regime. In nearby Tunisia, a mass movement ended twenty-three years of Ben Ali’s iron-fisted rule at the start of 2011, and since then, regional elites in the Middle East, along with their domestic and overseas allies in governments and business, have continued to shuffle nervously. Events and movements like this are exceptional historical moments. They are periods when there is a shift in how people act, abandoning their day-to-day activities to stand together to overthrow a repressive regime. These uprisings have unfolded in an era of unprecedented capitalist crisis that has spurred major mobilizations in countries such as Spain, Portugal, Ireland, and Greece in response to the imposition of austerity measures. These measures once again shift the burden and the blame for the crisis onto the shoulders of the majority working people, the poor, and the economically and socially marginalized rather than holding to account the financial, business, and political elites who caused it in the first place.
Notwithstanding enormous pressures to reconstitute and reduce people to individualized market actors, especially over the past decades where neoliberalism has seemingly gained ascendancy, these and more mundane-seeming daily struggles in our own communities and neighborhoods and across the world, which often occur below the radar, as it were give us cause for hope in tough times.
For most of us engaged in community and movement organizing, we dream of moments such as these and continue the grind of our work. This book was edited and written to examine this day-to-day work we do in organizing for social and economic justice in a period when these goals seem less obtainable. Our societies, with the shift to neoliberal capitalism during the last thirty years, seem intent on augmenting inequalities and the powerlessness of most people. Although the authors of this book live in what many assume to be democracies, we have seen those with economic power and their state allies define priorities and direction that benefit a small number of the rich and powerful at the expense of everyone else. Moreover, these activities, and the existence of many of today’s nation-states and corporations themselves, are based on the continuation of colonial relations with Indigenous Peoples and the majority of people in the Global South. The context for organizing is difficult and major victories limited, but we continue without illusion. Given the context and challenges organizing persists, at times limiting what those with capital and power can do and at other times making some social, political, cultural, and economic gains. Organizing is a process of resistance and challenge, embodying an alternative vision of society and on-the-ground means of working toward it. As critical adult educator Griff Foley remarks, history is "a continual struggle by ordinary people to maintain and extend control over their lives" but "popular struggles are complex, ambiguous and contradictory." 1
Local organizing work begins with people where they live and the issues they face, and can contribute to the building of a wider oppositional culture. Organizations committed to social change have an impact on the daily lives of citizens that encourages their par

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