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Let Them Call Me Rebel: Saul Alinsky: His Life and Legacy
The first, only, and definitive book on the great community organizer and social activist whose ideas and programs are relevant now more than ever.
Paperback, 618 pages
Published March 31st 1992 by Vintage
(first published 1989)
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Finally finished all 500+ pages of this wonderful book after many interruptions, which included travel and reading other books at the same time. Regardless, I thoroughly enjoyed this biography not only of the man, but of his history of organizing. As a VISTA Volunteer in 1971, we were trained in Alinsky organizing techniques. Although I read Reveille for Radicals years ago, I never knew much about the man whose work let to "Back of the Yards, "The Woodlawn Organization," and Fred Ross and César ...more
Although a biography on Saul Alinsky, there's a lot of great detail in this book on fundamentals of the community organization process and it's ties to neighborhood support institutions, e.g. churches, unions, and other community outreach organizations. You can see how this has progressed into the modern day with groups like ACORN. Very good insight into how Obama and Clinton see the world and use community groups to organize and get their message out.
I actually think that terming this a biography is a fairly loose term. The author centers less on his personal and more on his professional accomplishments, both ones he was involved directly in and ones he inspired. I found it fascinating though. I am a junkie for liberal politics though so that might have something to do with it. It does make you wonder if people cared as much as they used to, what kinds of change we could institute.
Sanford D. Horwitt is an author, book critic and policy advisor to foundations and nonprofit organizations concerned with promoting civic engagement and strengthening democratic institutions. He is the author of "Let Them Call Me Rebel," a biography of Saul Alinsky. His book reviews and essays have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Chicago Tribune, and o ...moreMore about Sanford D. Horwitt...