Transformative Movement Building

The How of Transformative Change

By |Dec 2, 2014|

A few weeks ago I got to spend two days in Oakland with a tremendous group of wonderful people brought together by the Movement Strategy Center.

We came together to explore one big question: [...]

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    Shifting Our Movement Stance: Exploring “Movement Pivots” in LA

Shifting Our Movement Stance: Exploring “Movement Pivots” in LA

By |Sep 15, 2014|

How do we embody––physically, mentally, and spiritually––the transformation we want to see in our movements and society?

How can we pivot to new ways of being that will strengthen and deepen our movement work?

Those [...]

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    Tell Us!! Does Your Organization Do Transformative Practice?

Tell Us!! Does Your Organization Do Transformative Practice?

By |Aug 11, 2014|

This fall MSC will release a new report on organizations and alliances bringing transformative practices into their work.

We want to hear from you!

Please take 2 minutes for our 3-question survey on collective transformative [...]

Healing Justice, Acupuncture & Social Change

By |Aug 4, 2014|

The connections between systemic oppression, health, and healing became clear to me in the summer of 1999 when I was helping to organize a Type 2 diabetes support group at Las Fuentes Health [...]

Where the Wild Things Are: Courage in Uncertainty

By |May 20, 2014|

Burnt out. That was me in 2009, after thirteen-plus years working in social justice organizations—a walking cliché as a movement worker. Although I had a relatively cushy job as a Development Director at [...]

Imagining the Angels of Bread

By |Apr 14, 2014|

This is the year that squatters evict landlords, gazing like admirals from the rail of the roofdeck or levitating hands in praise of steam in the shower; this is the year that shawled refugees deport judges, who stare at the floor and their swollen feet as files are stamped with their destination;

Movement Lie #5: It’s Either/Or

By |Apr 9, 2014|

Either/or’s are usually neither.

We know this when we’re presented with false choices like “gentrification versus blight,” “jobs versus environment,” or “productivity versus special treatment.” We know we’re being told the story in an [...]

Confessions Of A (Reluctant) Electoral Geek

By |Mar 26, 2014|

Math and science were never my favorite subjects in school, but the geeky left-brain part of me has always loved the science of organizing, even electoral organizing. I’ve loved finding the formulas and methods to map turnout plans, to overlay electoral precinct maps with voting data, to sketch out a campaign strategy power analysis. I’ve loved the order and discovering the more predictable parts of our organizing work.

An Organizer Learns to Love

By |Feb 11, 2014|

And so we came to that moment that was and still is inevitable. There I sat in a packed Sacramento conference room, at a state budget coalition meeting of issue and service groups. [...]

Movement Lie #4: Parenting Makes You Less Effective

By |Feb 4, 2014|

Becoming a parent is a doozy for anyone. And it plays out in specific ways for folks who have made their life about progressive social change. Consciously or not, most of us have [...]

2014: Give Our Inner Bullies a Break

By |Jan 15, 2014|

I am ready to admit: I am burnt out.

I’ve been working towards social justice, in one way or another, for at least twenty years. I’ve been a popular educator, a policy analyst, an [...]

Nelson Mandela: Reflections

By |Dec 10, 2013|

Over the past few days as I’ve watched people gather in Soweto, Birmingham, Bahia and Deli to sing, dance and celebrate the life of a simple man who changed us all, a flood [...]

How is Racial Justice Crucial to Transformation?

By |Nov 3, 2013|

Transformation -- of people, movements, our world -- can't happen without the elimination of racism in all its forms: bias, inequity, violence, oppression.

Unleashing Our Movement Superpowers

By |Oct 29, 2013|

Sometimes it feels like we need superhuman powers to build the movements we want.

I know I’ve felt that way as I’ve worked in long-term collaborations, committed to making sure our work made a [...]

Movement Lies We Tell Ourselves – Post #1

By |Oct 17, 2013|

My co-workers and I have started a running list of movement lies we tell ourselves.  Or tell each other.  Or allow to be told even when we’re squirming in our seat.  These are myths, delusions, [...]

Forget Empathy – It’s Time for Radical Connection

By |Oct 16, 2013|

This is a repost from the great new blog Transformation that tells the stories of people who are combining personal and social change in order to re-imagine their societies.

I was in Seattle the [...]

Transformative Practice? Hell Yeah!

By |Sep 27, 2013|

When I came to MSC, my body and spirit were numb from pain. Not from nonprofit burnout, but from its source: the unresolved dance with oppression that had spun me around for decades. I didn’t know it at the time, but I was entering a period of severe testing in my life. I was stepping into some truly soul-wrenching challenges that were, I would come to understand, the universe’s way of wringing me out, getting me all nice and clean and ready.