The Politics of Small Things: The Power of the Powerless in Dark Times

Paperback
Political change doesn't always begin with a bang; it often starts with just a whisper. From the discussions around kitchen tables that led to the dismantling of the Soviet bloc to the more recent emergence of Internet initiatives such as MoveOn.org and Redeem the Vote that are revolutionizing the American political landscape, consequential political life develops in small spaces where dialogue generates political power. In The Politics of Small Things , Jeffrey C. Goldfarb studies political activism at the micro level by comparatively analyzing key turning points in recent history. He presents a sociology of human interactions that lead from small to large: dissent around the old Soviet bloc; life on the streets in Warsaw, Prague, and Bucharest in 1989; and the religious and Internet mobilizations that transformed the 2004 presidential election, to name a few. Such pivotal but small moments, Goldfarb argues, can generate political autonomy and present alternatives to the big politics of the global stage and the dominant narratives of terrorism, antiterrorism, and globalization.