Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement by Angela Y. Davis

January 5, 2017
Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement, Angela Y. Davis, Book Review, InToriLexPublished By: Haymarket Books on January 25, 2016
Format Read: Paperback Edition (145 pages)
Genre: Non-fiction/ Feminism/ Race
Series: Stand Alone
Source: Purchased
Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement
In these newly collected essays, interviews, and speeches, world-renowned activist and scholar Angela Y. Davis illuminates the connections between struggles against state violence and oppression throughout history and around the world.

Reflecting on the importance of black feminism, intersectionality, and prison abolitionism for today's struggles, Davis discusses the legacies of previous liberation struggles, from the Black Freedom Movement to the South African anti-Apartheid movement. She highlights connections and analyzes today's struggles against state terror, from Ferguson to Palestine.

Facing a world of outrageous injustice, Davis challenges us to imagine and build the movement for human liberation. And in doing so, she reminds us that "Freedom is a constant struggle.



This was a informative and hopeful read, that I happily relished. I haven't read any other books by Angela Davis, but this has inspired me to read and learn more about her world view. The first three chapters are interviews with Angela Davis in regards to her views on how we can continue to advance social movements in a effective way. The next seven chapters are speeches that Angela Davis has given around the world. All of the topics that Angela discuss challenge us to find the intersections of struggle that exist around the world, and broaden our thinking of how social movement works.
"In many ways you can say that the prison serves as an institution that consolidates the state's inability and refusal to address the most pressing social problems of this era."
The most important take away I have is change has always been propelled by collective action,which includes many more people than will ever be mentioned in our history books. It's dangerous to forget that people were the driving force behind the civil rights movement in the United States, including many black women. When we recognize how intricately the forces against poor people of color throughout the world work together, it's easier to unite against them. It's hard to think outside of the reality and systems that we exist in, but that is the only way we can begin to change them. She also mentions Assata Shakur being added to the Most Wanted Terrorist list, as a clear sign that black liberation continues to be a threat to the powers that be.
 "...education has thoroughly become a commodity. It has been so thoroughly commoditized that many people don't even know how to understand the very process of acquiring knowledge because it is subordinated to the future capacity to make money."
Angela Davis wants us to recognize how the prison-industrial complex is connected to oppressed people in Palestine. She wants to show that feminism and social change has room for everyone of all genders, abilities and sexuality's to fight for freedom. Angela does a magnificent job connecting the black experience for change in the U.S. to the fight that continues everywhere against capitalist control. I would recommend this to everyone. This short book encouraged me to continue on with my own activism and get more involved in the global struggle of people fighting for their own freedom.
"Perhaps most important of all, and that is so central to the development of feminist abolitionist theories and practices: we have to learn how to think and act and struggle against that which is ideologically constituted as normal."


 Angela Yvonne Davis is an American political activist, scholar, and author. She emerged as a nationally prominent activist and radical in the 1960s, as a leader of the Communist Party USA, and had close relations with the Black Panther Party through her involvement in the Civil Rights Movement despite never being an official member of the party. Prisoner rights have been among her continuing interests; she is the founder of Critical Resistance, an organization working to abolish the prison-industrial complex. She is a retired professor with the History of Consciousness Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and is the former director of the university's Feminist Studies department.

Her research interests are in feminism, African American studies, critical theory, Marxism, popular music, social consciousness, and the philosophy and history of punishment and prisons. Her membership in the Communist Party led to Ronald Reagan's request in 1969 to have her barred from teaching at any university in the State of California. She was tried and acquitted of suspected involvement in the Soledad brothers' August 1970 abduction and murder of Judge Harold Haley in Marin County, California. She was twice a candidate for Vice President on the Communist Party USA ticket during the 1980s.

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