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Power and Love: A Theory and Practice of Social Change
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Power and Love: A Theory and Practice of Social Change

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating details ·  175 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
War is no way to resolve our most problematic group, community, and societal issues, but neither is a peace that simply sweeps our problems under the rug.
To create lasting change we have to learn to work fluidly with two distinct, fundamental drives that are in tension: power—the single-minded desire to achieve one’s solitary purpose; and love—the drive towards unity.  Th
Paperback, 168 pages
Published January 4th 2010 by Berrett-Koehler Publishers (first published December 11th 2009)
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Chris Riedy
Oct 31, 2011 rated it really liked it
Power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic.

~ Martin Luther King

Of the many wonderful quotes in Adam Kahane’s book Power and Love: A Theory and Practice of Social Change, the one above by Martin Luther King provides the pithiest summary of Kahane's central thesis. His simple argument, elaborated at length in the book, is that we need both power and love to achieve effective social change when faced with tough challenges. When we let either of thes
Diederick Janse
Feb 18, 2010 rated it liked it
I like this book's premise: that both power and love are necessary ingredients for successsful social change, particularly in situations characterized by high complexity in terms of cause and effect, relationships, and change dynamics. However, I felt there was too much repetition and too little deepening of this rich topic. It's essentially a story of how Adam Kahane became aware of these dynamics and how he's seen them play out in some of the work that he's been involved in as a facilitator. I ...more
Gregory Peterson
Jun 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing

Adam Kahane, Managing Director of Reos Partners, is one of those rare change agents whose remarkable work has touched the lives of people throughout the world.

Kahane tells powerful stories. It’s not because of his delivery (which is understated) but because of his unerring ear for capturing the heart of a situation -- in a quote, a phrase, a memorable anecdote – and using his observations to show us new ways of thinking. He projects a world-weary credibility built through a career of immersion i
Elan Bailey
Sep 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A compelling call for an integrated approach to social change and daily life.

Adam gives a compelling foray into the two energies needed to lead ourselves and others to a more generative future. Adam draws on his experiences at Shell, Generon and Reos, and his direct work with some of the world's leading change managers to help us discern the essence of power and love within us and around us. This book provides examples of the various forms of power: power to, power over, power within and power
Ilyhana Kennedy
Oct 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
I give this book four stars for its importance in the development of western thinking around social dynamics, more than its literary value.
It is a work of non-fiction, a historical and searching account of Adam Kahane's work as a high profile facilitator of groups seeking to find solutions to significant problems. Adam Kahane has worked on projects at the very grass roots level of social planning to the level of government policy development, and in highly diverse settings.
This is an important b
Myriam St-Denis Lisée
Aug 21, 2011 marked it as to-read
Shelves: à-lire-essai
Cité par Michel Venne à l'école d'été de l'INM, décidément je crois que ça vaudra la peine!
May 15, 2011 rated it it was ok
2 1/2 stars.

I mean, I don't think what he's saying is a bad idea at all; it's great. But I didn't really find the writing to my liking. It's a lot of 'this person did this, this person said that, a quote from a philosopher, love without power is sentimental and anemic!!!' (I cannot tell you how many times he said this last part--"love without power is sentimental and anemic"--I think it must have been at least a dozen.)

Also, I was hoping for more things that normal people could do. He's like, 'o
Jan 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Great book with lots of examples of power and love side by side. I had always struggled in reconciling the corruption of power with my own desire of connectedness. I also love Adam Kahane's honesty at his supposed failures and the insights this has given him.
I was lucky enough to meet Adam at the recent Creative Innovation conference. He gave me a piece of advice I will always treasure "Know your gift & use it. Connectors are needed in this fragmented world"
Mark Haines
Jan 14, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Good concept, definitely observed in my career supporting social and environmental change in BC, but in the end, there wasn't enough substance to make his concepts practicable.
Bruno Andreoni
May 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Lets talk about development by people that balance love and power to do it.
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Adam is a leading organizer, designer and facilitator of processes through which business, government, and civil society leaders can work together to address such challenges. He has worked in more than fifty countries, in every part of the world, with executives and politicians, generals and guerrillas, civil servants and trade unionists, community activists and United Nations officials, clergy an ...more
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