The Impossible Will Take a Little While: Perseverance and Hope in Troubled Times

The Impossible Will Take a Little While: Perseverance and Hope in Troubled Times

by Paul Rogat Loeb

Paperback(Second Edition)

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More relevant than ever, this seminal collection of essays encourages us to believe in the power of ordinary citizens to change the world

In today's turbulent world it's hard not to feel like we're going backwards; after decades of striving, justice and equality still seem like far off goals. What keeps us going when times get tough? How have the leaders and unsung heroes of world-changing political movements persevered in the face of cynicism, fear, and seemingly overwhelming odds? In The Impossible Will Take a Little While, they answer these questions in their own words, creating a conversation among some of the most visionary and eloquent voices of our times. Today, more than ever, we need their words and their wisdom.

In this revised edition, Paul Rogat Loeb has comprehensively updated this classic work on what it's like to go up against Goliath — whether South African apartheid, Mississippi segregation, Middle East dictatorships, or the corporations driving global climate change. Without sugarcoating the obstacles, these stories inspire hope to keep moving forward.

Think of this book as a conversation among some of the most visionary and eloquent voices of our times — or any time: Contributors include Maya Angelou, Diane Ackerman, Marian Wright Edelman, Wael Ghonim, Václav Havel, Paul Hawken, Seamus Heaney, Jonathan Kozol, Tony Kushner, Audre Lorde, Nelson Mandela, Bill McKibben, Bill Moyers, Pablo Neruda, Mary Pipher, Arundhati Roy, Dan Savage, Desmond Tutu, Alice Walker, Cornel West, Terry Tempest Williams, and Howard Zinn.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780465031733
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 04/29/2014
Edition description: Second Edition
Pages: 496
Sales rank: 150,330
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 13 - 18 Years

About the Author

Paul Rogat Loeb is the author of Soul of a Citizen, which has 130,000 copies in print. He appears regularly in the Huffington Post and on national radio and TV and has written for the New York Times, Washington Post, and AARP Bulletin.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

A Note to the Reader 19

1 Seeds of the Possible

From "The Cure at Troy" Seamus Heaney 22

Introduction 24

1 A Slender Thread Diane Ackermaim 29

2 Ordinary Resurrections Jonathan Kozol 37

3 Standing Up for Children Marian Wright Edelman 44

4 You Are Brilliant and the Earth Is Hiring Paul Hawken 54

5 Political Paralysis Danusha Veronica Goska 60

2 Dark Before the Dawn

From "September 1, 1939" W.H. Auden 70

Introduction 71

6 The Optimism of Uncertainty Howard Zinn 78

7 On Being Different Dan Savage 87

8 The Dark Years Nelson Mandela 97

9 An Orientation of the Heart Vaclav Havel 106

10 Reluctant Activists Mary Pipher 113

3 Everyday Grace

"The Peace of Wild Things" Wendell Berry 124

Introduction 125

11 Gate A-4 Naomi Shihab Nye 131

12 Mountain Music Scott Russell Sanders 133

13 The Sukkah of Shalom Rabbi Arthur Waskow 140

14 Getting Our Gaze Back Rose Marie Berger 145

15 Fragile and Hidden Henri Nouwen 148

16 There Is a Season Parker Palmer 150

4 Rebellious Imagination

"Celebration of the Human Voice" Eduardo Galeano 160

"Last Night as I Was Sleeping" Antonio Machado 161

Introduction 162

17 Childhood and Poetry Pablo Neruda 167

18 TO Love the Marigold Susan Griffin 169

19 Walking with the Wind John Lewis 175

20 Rough Translation Toni Mirosevich 179

21 Jesus and Alinsky Walter Wink 181

22 Stories from the Cha Cha Cha Vern Huffman 193

23 Do Not Go Gentle Sherman Alexie 195

24 Despair Is a Lie We Tell Ourselves Tony Kushner 201

5 Courage Is Contagious

"To Be of Use" Marge Piercy 206

Introduction 208

25 The Transformation of Silence Audre Lorde 221

26 The Small Work in the Great Work Victoria Safford 224

27 We Are All Khaled Said Wael Ghonim 231

28 Arab Revolutions Stephen Zunes 241

29 Not Deterred Paxus Calta 247

30 In What Do I Place My Trust? Sister Rosalie Bertell 249

31 Faith Works Jim Wallis 253

32 The Progressive Story of America Bill Moyers 257

6 The Global Stage

"Imagine the Angels of Bread" Martin Espada 268

Introduction 271

33 Kids, Trees, and Climate Change Mark Hertsgaard 279

34 with a Postscript by Paul Rogat Loeb, Curitiba Bill McKibben 289

35 Come September Arundhati Roy 299

36 The Black Hole Ariel Dorfman 309

37 Behemoth in a Bathrobe Carla Seaouist 318

7 Radical Dignity

"HOW Have You Spent Your Life?" Jalaluddin Rumi 324

Introduction 325

38 Letter from Birmingham Jail Martin Luther King, JR. 331

39 The Real Rosa Parks Paul Rogat Loeb 338

40 Prisoners of Hope Cornel West 343

41 Road to Redemption Billy Wayne Sinclair 347

42 Resisting Terror Peter Ackerman Jack Duvall 353

43 Composing a Life Story Mary Catherine Bateson 363

8 Beyond Hope

"Origami Emotion" Elizabeth Barrette 374

From "The New York Poem" Sam Hamill 375

Introduction 376

44 Staying the Course Mary-Wynne Ashford 384

45 The Elm Dance Joanna Macy 388

46 Is There Hope on Climate Change? David Roberts 397

47 The Inevitability Trap K. C. Golden 401

48 Hoping Against Hope Nadezhda Mandelstam 403

49 You Have to Pick Your Team Sonya Vetra Tinsley, as told to Paul Rogac Loeb 406

50 From Hope to Hopelessness Margaret Wheatley 408

9 Only Justice Can Stop a Curse

"Still I Rise" Maya Angelou 414

Introduction 416

51 Only Justice Can Stop a Curse Alice Walker 423

52 The Clan of One-Breasted Women Terry Tempest Williams 430

53 Next Year in Mas'Ha Starhawk 439

54 The Gruntwork of Peace Amos Oz 444

55 No Future Without Forgiveness Desmond Tutu 451

Acknowledgments 459

Credits 461

Index 469

About the Editor 481

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