Towards Collective Liberation

I have been teaching in a higher education setting full time for a little over 15 years and have on occasion (on frequent occasion) struggled with getting students to do their assigned reading and speak up/dialogue about what they read. There are two exceptions to this struggle that I have found. This book, Towards Collective Liberation, is one of them.

My copy of this book (assigned for 3 semesters now) is well worn. I still tune into different things when I read it along with my students. Not every student loves every idea presented in this book, to be sure, but it gets them thinking and questioning about community organizing and questioning their own assumptions about the words “anti-racist” and “feminist” and even “anarchist”. This book covers everything from the Catholic Worker movement to the sea turtle advocates in Seattle at the World Trade Organization, to local chapters of Food Not Bombs and other freedom and justice movements.

This book has led to good discussions on what empowerment can really look like, what does it mean to be accountable in community work, how do we grow leadership from the ground up, and so much more.

Obviously this book is a great choice for macro practice courses in social work education, but also a good read for anyone (teacher or learner) who is interested in learning more about activism.

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