In March 1987 a radical coalition of queer activists converged on Wall Street—their target, 'Business, Big Business, Business as Usual!!!' It was ACT UP's first demonstration. In November 1999 a radical coalition of environmental, labor, anarchist, queer, and human rights activists converged in Seattle—their target was similar, a system of global capitalism. Between 1987 and 1999 a new project in activism had emerged unshackled from past ghosts. Through innovative use of civil rights' era non-violent disobedience, guerrilla theatre, and sophisticated media work, ACT UP has helped transform the world of activism. This anthology offers a history of ACT UP for a new generation of activists and students. It is divided into five sections which address the new social movements, the use of street theater to reclaim public space, queer and sexual politics, new media/electronic civil disobedience, and race and community building. Contributions range across a diverse spectrum: The Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition, Jubilee 2000, Students for an Undemocratic Society, Fed Up Queers, Gender Identity Center of Colorado, Triangle Foundation, Jacks of Color, National Coalition for Sexual Freedom, Lower East Side Collective, Community Labor Coalition, Church of Stop-Shopping, Indy Media Collective, Black Radical Congress, The Theater of the Oppressed Laboratory, Adelante Street Theater; HealthGAP, Housing Works, SexPanic! and, of course, ACT UP itself. ... Read more
Customer Reviews (4)
Insightful book on the modern history of activism
What a wonderful addition to my library. This book offers an insightful discourse on the history and praxis of modern activism.
Brilliant, radical, art-activist radical social change
A fascinating, useful, comprehensive look at (mostly) Global North movements variously described as prefigurative politics, autogestion, precariousness, people-powered movements and radical social change. Landmark essays and recountings of key ideas and events in radical movements for global justice, queer rights, racial justice, environmental justice and public commons. All the rockstar organizations are here, in their most accessible and unpretentious forms: ACT-UP, Black Radical Congress, Students Against Sweatshops, Reclaim the Streets, Indymedia, Rev. Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping, SexPanic!, Theatre of the Oppressed, Billionaires for Bush, Lower East Side Collective, and dozens of others. Nonviolent resistance, direct action, guerilla theatre, art-as-activism -- a brilliant reader and overview of the movements for social justice within the Global North.
Queering the movementfor global justice!
This is one amazing, fabulous book, rich with people's history and political analysis, thoroughly debunking the myth that the anti-globalization movement is strictly a middle-class white, male, heterosexual phenomenon. As a young radical queer male living with AIDS, I especially enjoyed how the authors interlinked the struggle for economic justice with the fight for sexual freedom. From community gardens to ACT UP to the Battle of Seattle, this book brilliantly documents the social imagination of this movement of movements. Without a doubt, this is one of the best books on the global justice movement around, a definitive activist masterpiece!
is there a link?
Some of the essays in this book are excellent, providing real life evidence of efforts to build community power through documenting struggles on a local level. Still on a whole this book represents an assemblage of popular kitch.Shepard and Hayduk don't seem to provide any unifying theme other than the fact that various groups are organizing.Does the ACT-UP struggle resemble community labor coalition organizing?What are the differences between the so called "Urban Protest and Community Building."The derivative nature of the collection is clear to this reader since I found much of the work widely available elsewhere.The editors effort is commendable but a better project would have linked the movements in a coherent fashion.I certainly think that each of the sundry efforts are interesting, but they do not add up to any trend.The authors mix and match organizing that does not help me in understanding the various trajectories presented in the essays that are on the whole fairly interesting but taken together do not show any semblance of coherence.
Yes some of the movements intersect, but none of them seem to connect.Think about it: do ACT-Up, the Seattle protest of 1999, transgender activism, a protest against the murder of Matthew Shepard, pro-choice activists, worker organizing, etc. relate in any way other than tangentially?Another serious omission is the failure to include race as a serious issue in the contemporary era.
... Read more