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The Art of Protest: Culture and Activism from the Civil Rights Movement to the Streets of Seattle Paperback – July 1, 2005

ISBN-13: 978-0816637713 ISBN-10: 0816637717 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 388 pages
  • Publisher: Univ Of Minnesota Press; 1 edition (July 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0816637717
  • ISBN-13: 978-0816637713
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,781 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Sophisticated yet very accessible, with a fluid writing style and well-organized chapters ranging from black civil rights to global justice. Succeeding on many levels, the book makes a measurable contribution to the literature of several areas of study, offers a well-informed and insightful introduction to students at every level, and tenders various ideas and tactics to add to an activist toolkit. Essential." -Choice


"An ambitious project that breathes some vitality back into the study of social movements at a time when we need to remember the lessons of the past and become much more active in the present. Highly recommended as a bird's eye view into major social movements." - Sociological Inquiry

Book Description

Imagine the civil rights movement without freedom songs and the politics of women's movements without poetry. Or, more difficult yet, imagine an America unaffected by the cultural expressions and forms of the twentieth-century social movements that have shaped our nation. The first broad overview of social movements and the distinctive cultural forms that express and helped shape them, The Art of Protest shows the vital importance of these movements to American culture. In comparative accounts of movements beginning with the African American civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s and running through the Internet-driven movement for global justice ("Will the revolution be cybercast?") of the twenty-first century, T. V. Reed enriches our understanding of protest and its cultural expression. Reed explores the street drama of the Black Panthers, the revolutionary murals of the Chicano movement, the American Indian Movement's use of film and video, rock music and the struggles against famine and apartheid, ACT UP's use of visual art in the campaign against AIDS, and the literature of environmental justice. Throughout, Reed employs the concept of culture in three interrelated ways: by examining social movements as sub- or countercultures; by looking at poetry, painting, music, murals, film, and fiction in and around social movements; and by considering the ways in which the cultural texts generated by resistance movements have reshaped the contours of the wider American culture. The United States is a nation that began with a protest. Through the kaleidoscopic lens of artistic and cultural expression, Reed reveals how activism continues to remake our world.

More About the Author

T. V. Reed is Buchanan Distinguished Professor of American studies and English at Washington State University. He is currently [2014-2015] visiting distinguished professor of English and Humanities at York University, Toronto.

In addition to his writings, Reed is the author/manager of the popular web matrix, culturalpolitics.net, that includes sites on Digital Cultures, Environmental Justice Cultural Studies, Popular Culture, Social Movement Cultures, and Interdisciplinary Cultural Theory.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Katie King on October 2, 2006
Format: Paperback
I ordered this book to use in my women's studies class. I know TV Reed and I knew it would be good. But I didn't realize how extraordinary this book was. I am reading it now along side my students, haven't even finished it yet, but I am so excited by it I just have to talk about it!

At one point Reed describes the pleasure that politics must have in various forms -- the book is full of the power and meaning of a range of arts, especially in community and popular culture. He refers to Hannah Arendt and the idea of public happiness, that sense of exhilaration that suffuses one's being in moments of political engagement and collective action. Reading this book is some kind of public/private happiness too. One feels taken up through his appraisals of arts into his histories of various movements. Murals, poetry, drama, music, graphic arts, movies -- they shape our creative politics and the possibilities of our attachments and engagements with each other and through and about political culture. All these connections are inspirational in their detail and for emulation.

Thus it is also a handbook for activists, full of wise counsel for how to do cultural work and how to participate in and care about mobilization, organizing and direct action.

I also love its great heart and intellectual breadth: activist honor, dignity and integrity. Reed's generous spirit combined with sharp analysis clarifies strengths and limitations within particular movement histories, things we have to know to do good political work and to be active beings creating social justice.

This is a history of social movements, a set of tools for cultural workers, an intervention into the way we critique each other's political practices, and a sharing of spirit among activisms and arts.

And I haven't even finished it yet! Now I want all my students to read it or to have read it! I want to give it to everyone I know!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By T. V. Reed on October 14, 2005
Format: Paperback
Imagine the civil rights movement without freedom songs or the politics of women's movements without poetry. More difficult yet, imagine an America unaffected by the cultural expressions of the twentieth-century social movements that have shaped our nation. The first broad overview of social movements and the distinctive cultural forms that helped shape them, The Art of Protest shows the vital importance of these movements to American culture.

In comparative accounts of movements beginning with the African American civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s and running through the Internet-driven movement for global justice of the twenty-first century ("Will the revolution be cybercast?"), T. V. Reed enriches our understanding of protest and its cultural expression. Reed explores the street drama of the Black Panthers, the revolutionary murals of the Chicano movement, the American Indian Movement's use of film and video, rock music and the struggles against famine and apartheid, ACT UP's use of visual art in the campaign against AIDS, and the literature of environmental justice. Throughout, Reed employs the concept of culture in three interrelated ways: by examining social movements as sub- or countercultures; by looking at poetry, painting, music, murals, film, and fiction in and around social movements; and by considering the ways in which the cultural texts generated by resistance movements have reshaped the contours of the wider American culture.

The United States is a nation that began with a protest. Through the kaleidoscopic lens of artistic and cultural expression, Reed reveals how activism continues to remake our world.
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By Alyssa on December 13, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Extremely fresh point of view. I very much enjoyed reading this book. Bought it for an undergrad class. Interesting read.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. Carter on June 7, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It was very helpful for the class that I was taking at the time Art and Social Protest. I actually liked the book it fit the topic I was studying for.
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