Archive for September 7th, 2011

September 7, 2011

Solidarity of Interest, Looking Outward

by admin

Guest post by Cathy Brennan

The following is not a theoretical discussion. Rather, I propose a method of political organizing that will help move conversations forward. The ideas expressed herein are derived from my own experiences with political organizing and the limited theory I have read. I strongly encourage readers to read John Rawls’ A Theory of Justice if you are interested in learning more about my own theoretical framework.

For as long as I can remember, I have been interested in the political world around me. I blame my mother for this, as I recall her making me write a letter about how I felt when the U.S. hostages in Iran were freed under Ronald Reagan (go look it up, I am not a history teacher) in 1981. My mother – an Irish immigrant who never graduated from high school but who worked a union job to send me to a fancy-schmancy college – taught me that we need to identify common interests in order to move a political agenda forward.  That is, we must look outward and find ways of making connections with others who support a common goal.  Working in this manner – in solidarity with people who might not be exactly *like* you, but who share your goal – has been successful on issue campaigns, most notably labor organizing and, most recently, health care reform.

Enter Identity Politics.

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