Hope in the Dark

Hope in the Dark

Untold Histories, Wild Possibilities

Book - 2016
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With Hope in the Dark, Rebecca Solnit makes a radical case for hope as a commitment to act in a world whose future remains uncertain and unknowable. Drawing on her decades of activism and a wide reading of environmental, cultural, and political history, Solnit argued that radicals have a long, neglected history of transformative victories, that the positive consequences of our acts are not always immediately seen, directly knowable, or even measurable, and that pessimism and despair rest on an unwarranted confidence about what is going to happen next.
Publisher: Chicago, Illinois : Haymarket Books, 2016
Edition: Third edition, with a new foreword and afterword
ISBN: 9781608465767
1608465764
Branch Call Number: 303.4 So
Characteristics: xxvi, 152 pages ; 19 cm

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LPL_ShirleyB Aug 10, 2017

Solnit provides powerful reassurance to have faith in the impact of social and environmental activism—to accept that benefits are not usually obvious or immediate.

Wonderfully uplifting yet clear-eyed and down-to-earth book for people who need a little inspiration to keep going in the face of what often seems to be insurmountable odds. My favorite quote from the intro: "It’s important to say what hope is not: it is not the belief that everything was, is, or will be fine. The evidence is all around us of tremendous suffering and tremendous destruction. The hope I’m interested in is about broad perspectives with specific possibilities, ones that invite or demand that we act. It’s also not a sunny everything-is-getting-better narrative, though it may be a counter to the everything-is-getting-worse narrative. You could call it an account of complexities and uncertainties, with openings."

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stepha89
Mar 25, 2017

Using historical examples, Solnit asserts that not being where they want to be yet isn't a reason for activists to give up on their movements; instead, they should be heartened by the smaller victories along the way. At times the book felt almost like she was trying to promote progressive activism, but her overall argument was effective.

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bradallen
Mar 10, 2017

I am Rebecca Solnit's newest fanboy. Her dissection of the either/or, black/white, this/that mentality that plagues so many of us so much of the time begs that it be read--often and repeatedly like a great hymnal. Solnit helps me keep hope in my heart as we face an uncertain future. She reminds us that we become our best selves when crises or adversity challenge us, and that we must not lose hope and retreat from seemingly unwinnable battles. She helps remind me of what my wife always says, just do the next right thing. Required reading!

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mclarjh
Sep 07, 2014

This is more self promotional advertising material for 'progressive' activism than it is clear headed analysis.

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