The Purpose of Power (Digital Audiobook)
How We Come Together When We Fall Apart
Publication Date: October 19, 2020
“Excellent and provocative . . . a gateway [to] urgent debates.”—Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, The New Yorker
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY Time • Marie Claire • Kirkus Reviews
In 2013, Alicia Garza wrote what she called “a love letter to Black people” on Facebook, in the aftermath of the acquittal of the man who murdered seventeen-year-old Trayvon Martin. Garza wrote:
Black people. I love you. I love us. Our lives matter.
With the speed and networking capacities of social media, #BlackLivesMatter became the hashtag heard ’round the world. But Garza knew even then that hashtags don’t start movements—people do.
Long before #BlackLivesMatter became a rallying cry for this generation, Garza had spent the better part of two decades learning and unlearning some hard lessons about organizing. The lessons she offers are different from the “rules for radicals” that animated earlier generations of activists, and diverge from the charismatic, patriarchal model of the American civil rights movement. She reflects instead on how making room amongst the woke for those who are still awakening can inspire and activate more people to fight for the world we all deserve.
This is the story of one woman’s lessons through years of bringing people together to create change. Most of all, it is a new paradigm for change for a new generation of changemakers, from the mind and heart behind one of the most important movements of our time.
About the Author
Alicia Garza is an activist and writer best known as one of the three people who founded the Black Lives Matter movement in 2013. Garza has also organized around issues related to health, student services, and rights for domestic workers as well as violence against trans and gender nonconforming people of color. Garza describes herself as a queer social justice activist and Marxist. She is currently the special projects director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA), which strives to get better pay and working conditions for nannies and housekeepers. She also serves on the board of directors for the School of Unity and Liberation (SOUL) and Black Organizing for Leadership and Dignity (BOLD), both based in Oakland, California where Garza lives with her husband.