Julie Laporte's Reviews > Mighty Be Our Powers: How Sisterhood, Prayer, and Sex Changed a Nation at War

Mighty Be Our Powers by Leymah Gbowee
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's review
Nov 21, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction
Read from November 16 to 18, 2011

Very empowering book for women. Inspiring. Made me realize just how much work can be done to achieve peace--and how many organizations and degreed programs/certifications/training there are available. Peace has always seemed like a sort of laissez-faire sort of concept for me (an over-simplification, but you get my drift)--a sort of ideal, and outside education and working for tolerance and conflict resolution, I wasn't sure how much a single person can do. This book will show you! I believe even more now in developing a Department of Peace, and how powerful it could be.

The first half of Leymah's story will break your heart. It's so hard to think of these things going on while I was prancing through my childhood, unawares. The second half of the book won't pull you along like the first, but I still felt obligated and privileged to read how Liberia's transformation was going to happen (and somewhat, that of West Africa). They still have a long way to go--but how far they've come in such a short time is amazing.

The little I knew of African Modern History, I had a very hard time understanding how it could be so atrociously violent. Aspects of this narrative have helped me to understand...certainly not justify, but comprehend how one at least gets started off on that road. Kidnapping young boys from their villages, turning off their humanity and compassion, addicting them to drugs...and this on top of generations of oppression and powerlessness, which we we (the Western world) were not innocent bystanders of, but agitators. It's not easy seeing what a damaging role our governments have played in third-world politics. It's important that we understand our role then, but NOW, as well, especially in the things we purchase every day which transfer more and more power to heartless corporations, such as in the realm of food. Don't let this book cause you to feel powerless--your purchasing power is lifeblood for conscienceless companys....things you purchase every week, like coffee and bananas. Seek out fair trade and organic if you can't get local! (If you are interested in help identifying changes you can make in your purchases, switching to better sources, just ask me!)
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