Influences and Resources
The following are some of the resources that I have benefited from and shaped my understanding of the world. Always eager for more recommendations!
The then largely unknown Obama gave a historic speech to the DNC in 2004, launching himself into the national spotlight. I revisit this periodically as a masterful example of public narrative and values-based political oratory.
The Swedish diplomat, economist and author served as the 2nd Secretary General of the United Nations, and is largely credited with crafting the institution that we have today, which believe it or not, is far more effective and purposeful than world leaders intended it to be when it was first created. He is impressive, however, for his intensely spiritual writings as he struggles to find purpose and meaning as he engages in the highest levels of peacemaking in a fast changing world.
I have had the pleasure to work with Maria and learn from her incredible framework of personal and spiritual growth. Her compassion, wit and vibrancy are underscored by a richly intellectual study of what it means to be human, perhaps best explained by her words: "Our experience is luminous not when we are thinking about living our lives, but when we are fully engaged physically in reality. The experiences that reflect luminosity are those based on actions taken with clarity, focus, ease, and grace."
A Republican patrician born in another era, Roosevelt became a progressive reformer, motivated by a deep conviction that our country's greatness is only so great as our ability to rise to new challenges. He was remarkably effective, had an uncanny ability to read the public, befriended the press, and set precedent in areas where past presidents had been afraid to tread. His willingness to stand up to his own party, as well as his opponents is a remarkable story of leadership in this country during a time of political corruption and gridlock, staggering inequality and rapid change.
Jane F. McAlevey
An important and deep look into the mechanisms that have been most succesful at winning people-powered victories in the 21st century. Mcalevey argues that meaningful change can only happen with organizing that puts ordinary people at the center of their own struggle: there are no shortcuts to lasting social change, especially in our new gilded age.