A book that should probably be used as a reference and jump off for critical conversations and growth, The Revolution Starts at Home : Confronting Intimate Violence Within Activist Communities, edited by Ching-In Chen, Jai Dulani and Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha is out and on tour.
The anthology took 7 years to pull together and even 7 years ago was long overdue as there are so many struggles within so-called activist spaces about how we treat each other.
“Was/is your abusive partner a high-profile activist? Does your abusive girlfriend’s best friend staff the domestic violence hotline? Have you successfully kicked an abuser out of your group? Did your anti-police brutality group fear retaliation if you went to the cops about another organizer’s assault? Have you found solutions where accountability didn’t mean isolation for either of you? Was the ‘healing circle’ a bunch of bullshit? Is the local trans community so small that you don’t want you or your partner to lose it?
“We wanted to hear about what worked and what didn’t, what survivors and their supporters learned, what they wish folks had done, what they never want to have happen again. We wanted to hear about folks’ experiences confronting abusers, both with cops and courts and with methods outside the criminal justice system.”
— The Revolution Starts at Home collective
Long demanded and urgently needed, The Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence Within Activist Communities finally breaks the dangerous silence surrounding the secret of intimate violence within social justice circles. This watershed collection of stories and strategies tackles the multiple forms of violence encountered right where we live, love, and work for social change — and delves into the nitty-gritty on how we might create safety from abuse without relying on the state. Drawing on over a decade of community accountability work, along with its many hard lessons and unanswered questions, The Revolution Starts at Home offers potentially life-saving alternatives for creating survivor safety while building a movement where no one is left behind.
For all of you Northeast Coasters, there are opportunities to meet some of the editors, hear from the book, and engage in conversation about why this book and where from here. Mala will be at the NYC release tonight so please stay tuned to our twitter account for live-tweets (as permitted). (more…)