After the Protests Are Heard: Enacting Civic Engagement and Social Transformation

Sharon D. Welch. New York Univ, $28 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-4798-5790-6
Theologian Welch (Communities of Resistance and Solidarity) offers actionable responses to systemic injustice in this dryly written but expansive guide to “the third wave of social justice... building what is right.” She identifies the goal as interdependence—mutual care responsibility, and cooperation—and begins with political science texts suggesting that “gains in civil rights, equality for women, people who are LGBTQIA..., and those with disabilities, as well as increasing racial, cultural, and religious diversity, will inevitably produce [change that alarms intolerant people, who have been shown to respond by turning to] authoritarianism.” In each chapter, Welch defines desired changes in various arenas (business, environmental conservation, journalism, and the arts) and provides examples of work being done by nonviolent protestors, civil servants, B corporations (businesses that balance purpose and profit), and human rights organizations, such as an empowerment-minded employment agency serving workers with disabilities and Project Drawdown, an organization working not to mitigate global warming but to make “deliberate attempts at restoration” and to benefit human well-being and the environment. Welch repeatedly emphasizes the importance of working with marginalized populations and embracing partial successes and incrementalism. Superfluous jargon and some organizational issues partially obfuscate clear recommendations about how to work toward social change. Filled with innumerable examples of effective social action, this dense but important work will give the guidance social justice–minded readers are seeking. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/12/2018
Release date: 01/01/2019
Genre: Nonfiction
Hardcover - 272 pages - 978-1-4798-8364-6
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