February 24, 2017
The Verso Loft
Propelled by more than 100 candid interviews conducted over a span of decades, this elegant and lively history showcases the voices of key players in an array of movements – environmentalist, anti-nuclear, anti-apartheid, feminist, LGBTQ, anti-globalization, racial-justice, anti-war, and more – across an era when American politics shifted to the right, and issue- and identity-based organizing eclipsed the traditional ideologies of the left.
As Kauffman, a longtime movement insider, examines how groups from ACT UP to Occupy Wall Street to Black Lives Matter have used direct action to catalyze change against long odds, she details the profound influence of feminism and queerness on radical political practice and how enduring divisions of race have shaped the landscape of activism. Written with nuance and humor, and revealing deep connections between movements usually viewed in isolation, Direct Action is essential reading for anyone interested in understanding how protest movements erupt -- and how they can succeed.
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L. A. Kauffman has spent more than 30 years immersed in radical movements, as an organizer, strategist, journalist, and observer. Her writings on grassroots activism and social movement history have been published in The Nation, Mother Jones, n+1, The Baffler, and many other outlets. Kauffman was the mobilizing coordinator for the massive anti-war marches of 2003-2004; she has been called a “virtuoso organizer” by journalist Scott Sherman for her role in saving community gardens and public libraries in New York City from developers.
7.00pm – 10.00pm
The Verso Loft
20 Jay Street, Suite 1010
Brooklyn, NY 11201 United States
(718) 246 8160
The most influential large-scale political action of the ’60s was actually in 1971, and you might not have heard of it. It was called the Mayday action, and it provides invaluable lessons for today.
An excerpt from Direct Action: Protest and the Reinvention of American Radicalism, by L. A. Kauffman, on sale February 21.
This piece originally appeared in Longreads.