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Bay Area community organizer Shaw (Reclaiming America) examines the enduring influence of the United Farm Workers' model of grassroots organization, which he pointedly credits with the majority of labor's successes since the 1960s and a wellspring of 21st-century movements for democratic rights. He retells the story of Cesar Chavez and the UFW's unprecedented success in mobilizing a broad coalition as well as winning political clout and material gains for workers through such tactics as boycotts, appeals to spiritual values, fasting and community-centered organizing. Shaw describes a generation of young activists passing through the UFW's crucible of idealism, sacrifice and individual initiative, and into a lifetime of service to social justice causes; indeed, it was the very success of the UFW's campaigns that contributed, ironically, to a gradual power drain on the union in the 1980s. Leading organizers and political strategists like Susan Sachen and Marshall Ganz went on to work for other unions like SEIU or were hired away by mainstream electoral campaigns. Finally, Shaw evaluates the capacities of today's labor movement to build on the UFW's legacy of self-directed, on-the-ground training, political solidarity and far-reaching social idealism. (Jan.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.