Community Organizing: History and Theory
Power is an ability to create change. Without access to power that might otherwise come from political, financial or personal networks, community organizing can often serve as the only viable source of power for the oppressed. Although organizing became a partisan buzzword during the 2008 presidential campaign, it is firmly rooted in the democratic tradition. Organizing campaigns have played a central role in US history, most notably as the foundation of the Civil Rights movement. This course will integrate the history and theories of community organizing so that each student will have the foundation to develop a transformational praxis to create change in their own communities. Focused analysis of the course material, case study reviews, guest speaker presentations, inquiry-based assessments and problem-posing methods rooted in the student's own context will serve as the primary means of development.