ChangeMakers’ Essential Listens

It’s February and the year has properly started. We know you are probably thinking – ‘gosh I really wish I could get some more inspiration for these tricky times.’ Don’t worry, we have you covered!

We would like to present the 2021 ChangeMakers Listening Guide. Five top episodes (or series) to lift your spirits and remind you about how change is possible.

  1. The Battle for Standing Rock that stopped the Keystone Pipeline (this month!)

Here Indigenous leaders from across the Dakotas describe the long history of the Pipeline fight, and the history of Treaty breaking in the US. The story tells the drama and brutalities of the 2016 battle. President Biden just ended the Keystone Pipeline. This story shows us all why we should never give up. Find it here – Episode 7, Series 1:

  1. Hong Kong protesters and Beijing’s Crackdown

What has gone on in Hong Kong? Why is Beijing now arresting protesters? 

Well, it’s a long story. 2019 saw some of the largest protests ever – 2 million people out of 7 million residents. Why? We will take you through the history exploring it from the perspective of some of Hong Kong’s leading Democratic activists (several who had tragically been recently arrested). It’s here, episode 22 series 3.

We also cover some of the recent history – the 2014 Umbrella Uprising and the crackdown that followed. We cover Umbrella here in Series 2, episode 12. And the crackdown after Umbrella here, Episode 23, series 3.

Finally, to put this all in context with the National Security Law and the windback of democracy, we have this ChangeMaker Chat with Samuel Chu recorded in September 2020. He is the head of the Hong Kong Democracy Council (and the producer of the stories above!):

  1. The Parkland’s students and the fight against gun control in the US

We have a three part series on the fight for gun control arising out of the school schooling in Parklands Florida. First – here – we tell the story of how the students build a national movement within 5 weeks of the shooting. Then, here, we tell a lesser known story of how one of the parents who lost his son used art to express his politics. Finally – here – we explore how movements for gun control relate to the Black Community, through the experiences of several Black leaders in March for our Lives. These are the first three episodes in series 4, 2020.

  1. Impossible victories – Fight for Fifteen and the Politics of Barcelona

Our first episode ever was about making change you could only dream of. Fight for Fifteen is now on President Biden’s agenda – and the first half of this episode tells the story of how this movement came to life. The second half tells the story of how a group of housing activists in Barcelona rose out of the 2008 Financial Crisis to overturn party politics in Barcelona – where they now govern the city. Let me say that again – ‘govern the city’. These are long stories about how people can turn around inequality and economic crisis. Perfect fuel for the soul and the mind in 2021.

  1. Stepping back with Hahrie Han and thinking through how we make change

After all those stories you might want some space to think conceptually about how some of this change comes about. Let me present our ChangeMaker Chat with Hahrie Han – one of the world’s preeminent scholars on organising and social change! Hahrie both shares her story and some of the concepts she uses to make sense of how change works.

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