- Chelsea Green - http://www.chelseagreen.com/content -
Are Progressives Depressed or Too Privileged to Produce Social Change?
Posted By mpielli On January 8, 2010 @ 1:02 am In Politics & Social Justice | No Comments
Are you on the Left? Do you feel tired? Worn out? Beaten down? Do you suffer from Outrage Fatigue? Psychotherapist Bruce Levine thinks that may be because many on the left have given up hope, that progressive movements have grown too used to being on the losing side to mount much of a counterattack. Les Leopold disagrees, and feels that many progressive organizations aren’t being given their due for all of the work that they do. What do you think? Read their exchange to find out!
A few weeks ago Bruce Levine wrote a provocative article titled “Are Americans a Broken People? Why We’ve Stopped Fighting Back Against the Forces of Oppression.” Levine suggested that many progressives and much of the general population may be so broken by the system that they’ve given up hope and become passive. He uses the metaphor of an abusive relationship, in which lack of hope and the sense that nothing matters make people passive instead of angry.
Levine, a radical psychotherapist practicing in Cincinnati, Ohio, has carved out a popular niche with readers, writing about psychological issues related to politics and change. Two of his most-read articles are “The Case for Giving Eli Lilly the Corporate Death Penalty” and ” Has American Society Gone Insane?”
Longtime labor organizer and economic thinker Les Leopold, whose recent book The Looting of America was excerpted on AlterNet, took offense to Levine’s article and wrote a response. While calling Levine’s argument an eyeopener, Leopold wrote that he has not experienced the passivity Levine describes in labor unions and among progressives. Leopold insists that progress will come from the hard work of organizing: building infrastructure, connecting issues and thinking big. We can’t count on people like Al Gore, who was passive after the 2000 election, and Barack Obama.
Article printed from Chelsea Green: http://www.chelseagreen.com/content
URL to article: http://www.chelseagreen.com/content/are-progressives-depressed-or-too-privileged-to-produce-social-change/
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 Read the whole article here.: http://www.alternet.org/story/144982/are_progressives_depressed_or_too_privileged_to_produce_social_change__or_are_we_just_failing_to_organize_effectively__