9 Books To Renew Your Activism If You're Feeling Hopeless About The News
The news is . . . not good, folks. If you've got activism burnout, honey, I feel you. That's why I've put together this short list of nine books that will renew your activism if the news cycle has you down.
You can't scroll Facebook or Twitter without seeing the disbelief and disdain hurled at victims of sexual assault and harassment, and calls for curtailing the bodily autonomy of people with uteruses. That's not to mention the unrelenting denigration and discrimination against the LGTBQIAP+ community, immigrants, people of color, the disabled, members of religious minorities, the poor, the homeless, and anyone else who isn't a wealthy, white, able-bodied, cisgender, heterosexual, American man.
So yeah, you're tired. I'm tired. Everyone is tired, and for good reasons. But we have an obligation to keep fighting, even though there's nothing any of us would like more than to just run away to our hidey holes and wait for all of this to blow over. You and I both know we can't afford to do that.
So take a break, and take a few deep breaths. Pick out one of the books on the list below, and use it to recharge your activist batteries. Then get back out there and keep fighting.
'Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women's Anger' by Rebecca Traister
All the Single Ladies author Rebecca Traister returns in 2018 with another feminist hit. Good and Mad tracks the power of feminist fury to change society throughout history.
'When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir' by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and asha bandele
Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors discusses the history of the movement in this memoir, co-written with former Essence Magazine Features Editor asha bandele.
'How Does It Feel to Be a Problem?: Being Young and Arab in America' by Moustafa Bayoumi
Focusing on Millennials in Brooklyn, Moustafa Bayoumi's How Does It Feel to Be a Problem? examines the lives of young Muslims and Arab-Americans living in the U.S. in the shadow of Sep. 11, 2001.
'Tomorrow Will Be Different: Love, Loss, and the Fight for Trans Equality' by Sarah McBride
This memoir from trans activist Sarah McBride tackles issues faced by trans Americans across the country, including inaccessible restrooms and health care obstacles.
'Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Anger' by Soraya Chemaly
Another book on women's anger, Soraya Chemaly's Rage Becomes Her is an inspiring call to arms for women around the world: Get angry, and use that anger to facilitate change.
'Keep Marching: How Every Woman Can Take Action and Change Our World' by Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner
For the days when you feel as if you've done all you can, there's Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner's Keep Marching, which will give you ideas on how you can keep on keeping on in the fight for radical change.
'Necessary Trouble: Americans in Revolt' by Sarah Jaffe
Why have so many prominent activist groups formed over the last 10 years? That's the question Sarah Jaffe attempts to answer in Necessary Trouble: Americans in Revolt.
'No Shortcuts: Organizing for Power in the New Gilded Age' by Jane F. McAlevey
Want to put together a team of activists, but have no idea where to start? Check out Jane F. McAlevey's handy guide, No Shortcuts.
'Life's Work: A Moral Argument for Choice' by Willie Parker
Forty-five years after Roe v. Wade legalized abortion across the U.S., people with vaginas still have to fight for access to critical health care. In Life's Work, abortion doctor Willie Parker makes the argument that providing safe, legal abortions to women who want and need them is the morally correct thing to do.