Civic Power: Rebuilding American Democracy in an Era of Crisis
K.Sabeel Rahman, Hollie Russon Gilman
What will it take to restore American democracy and rescue it from this moment of crisis? Civic Power argues that the current threat to US democracy is rooted not just in the outcome of the 2016 election, but in deeper, systemic forms of inequality that concentrate economic and political power in the hands of the few at the expense of the many. Drawing on historical and social science research and case studies of contemporary democratic innovations across the country, Civic Power calls for a broader approach to democracy reform focused on meaningfully redistributing power to citizens. It advocates for both reviving grassroots civil society and novel approaches to governance, policymaking, civic technology, and institutional design – aimed at dismantling structural disparities to build a more inclusive, empowered, bottom-up democracy, where communities and people have greater voice, power, and agency.
You’re More Powerful than You Think: A Citizen’s Guide to Making Change Happen
Is this the America you want? If not, here’s how to claim the power to change your country. We are in an age of epic political turbulence in America. Old hierarchies and institutions are collapsing. From the election of Donald Trump to the upending of the major political parties to the spread of grassroots movements like Black Lives Matter and $15 Now, people across the country and across the political spectrum are reclaiming power. Eric Liu, who has spent a career practicing and teaching civic power, lays out the answers in this incisive, inspiring, and provocative book. Using examples from the left and the right, past and present, he reveals the core laws of power. He shows that all of us can generate power-and then, step by step, he shows us how. The strategies of reform and revolution he lays out will help every reader make sense of our world today.
Double Trouble: Black Mayors, Black Communities, and the Call for a Deep Democracy
J. Phillip Thompson III
J. Phillip Thompson III, an insider in the Dinkins administration, provides the first in-depth look at how the black mayors of America’s major cities achieve social change. Black constituents naturally look to black mayors to effect great change for the poor, but the reality of the situation is complicated. Thompson argues that African American mayors, legislators, and political activists need to more effectively challenge opinions and public policies supported by the white public and encourage greater political inclusion and open political discourse within black communities. Only by unveiling painful internal oppressions, and exclusions within black politics will the black community’s power increase and compel similar unveilings in the broader interracial conversation about the problems of the urban poor. Tracing the historical development and contemporary practice of black mayoral politics, this is a fascinating study of the motivations of black politicians, competing ideologies in the black community and the inner dynamics of urban social change.
Redefining Black Power: Reflections on the State of Black America
The Obama presidency represented a major milestone in African American history. The very presence of a black First Family had a profound cultural impact, but did the Obama White House actually addressed any of the ongoing issues faced by Black America? Did communities of color organized sufficiently to voice their concerns? How could lessons learned from past freedom struggles guide the organizing that’s needed to meet today’s opportunities and challenges? To explore these questions in depth, international journalist Joanne Griffith traveled the country to interview black intellectuals, activists, authors, and educators, including former advisor to former President Obama, Van Jones; civil rights advocate and litigator, Michelle Alexander; economist, Julianne Malveaux; and friend and speech writer for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Dr. Vincent Harding. The result was a wide-ranging exploration of the hot-button issues facing America today — from economics, education, and the law, to the cultural impact of mass media.
Black Girl Civics: Expanding and Navigating the Boundaries of Civic Engagement
Ginnie Logan, Janiece Mackey
There are scholars doing powerful work on Black youth and civics; scholars focused on girls and civics; and scholars focused on Black girls in education. But the intersections of African American girlhood and civics have not received adequate attention. This book begins the journey of understanding and communicating the varied forms of civics in the Black Girl experience. Black Girl Civics: Expanding and Navigating the Boundaries of Civic Engagement brings together a range of works that grapple with the question of what it means for African American girls to engage in civic identity development and expression. This collection of 11 chapters features a range of research from empirical to theoretical and is forwarded by Black Girlhood scholar Dr. Venus Evans-Winters. The intended audience for this volume includes Black girlhood scholars, scholars of race and gender, teachers, civic advocacy organizations, civic engagement researchers, and youth development providers.