This collection brings together interviews with a compelling range of musicians, artists, and activists from around the globe. What does it mean for an artist to be political ? Moving away from a narrow idea about politics that is organized around elections, advocacy groups, or concrete manifestos, the subjects of Creative Activism do their work through song, poetry, painting, and other arts. The interviews take us from Oakland to London to Johannesburg and from the Occupy movement to the coal mines of Appalachia to the fantasy worlds created by some of our most fascinating writers of spectacular fiction. Listening to the important cultural workers of our time challenges any idea that some other time was the golden age of political art: Creative Activism gives us a front-row seat to the thrilling artistic activism of our own moment.
There is a wonderfully useful group of contemporary thinkers assembled here. I am glad it exists. * Samuel R. Delany, author of Babel-17 (1966) and Dhalgren (1975) * Featuring an extraordinary range of artists and voices, Creative Activism is an indispensable compilation of oral histories-and an often-exhilarating exchange of ideas on the roles of artists on the front lines of activism today. As an instructive and evocative guide, Rachel Lee Rubin allows us to re-envision how we view the world, redefine the limits of change, and reconsider the role of artists in shaping our lives. The great oral historian Studs Terkel often reminded us that reading a book should not be a passive exercise, but rather a raucous conversation. As an essential resource, Creative Activism offers one of the most important and raucous conversations of our times. * Jeff Biggers, author of Resistance: Reclaiming an American Tradition (forthcoming 2018) *