Ruby Ramblings

Green Books Campaign – Wherever There’s a Fight
November 10, 2009, 4:46 pm
Filed under: Books, economics, Peace, Politics


Eco Libris, in a random act of generosity, offered 100 free books to 100 bloggers who were willing to review them. The idea is to get the word out about publishers that are environmentally friendly with their printing/paper services.

“Today 100 bloggers are reviewing 100 great books printed in an environmentally friendly way. Our goal is to encourage publishers to get greener and readers to take the environment into consideration when purchasing books. This campaign is organized by Eco-Libris, a a green company working to green up the book industry by promoting the adoption of green practices, balancing out books by planting trees, and supporting green books. A full list of participating blogs and links to their reviews is available on Eco-Libris website”.

My book:

Wherever There’s a Fight: How Runaway Slaves, Suffragists, Immigrants, Strikers and Poets Shaped Civil Liberties in California

Published by the Green Press Initiative and Heyday Books.

This is a very conversational, thoughtful, and engaging look at the history of various civil rights movements in California. Being a huge, and hugely diverse state, I think it serves as an example, and interesting reading for anyone just about anywhere. The first thing that struck me about the book, is that we really do need reminders that a short time ago in history, discrimination and violence were not only legal, but encouraged by majority groups.

Although this book could be used as a college level textbook, it is not at all dry, and has so many other uses for anyone interested in American rights movements, history, and globalization.

The book is largely split into chapters that follow a time period, but although each chapter ends a little later in time, they all go back in history to roughly the mid-1880s looking at the chain of events that lead to the breakthrough in rights. Chapters one through three look at early California history including immigrant rights and workers’ rights. The next set of chapters look at racial equality, the rights of women, and political dissent. Moving further in time the authors examine free press, religious freedom, GLBT rights, people with disabilities, and criminal justice.

The first chapter Staking our Claim was a horrific look at some the early practices of violence against, in particular, Chinese laborers and Mexican people. One story was of a Mexican woman whose house had been broken into. She defended herself, wounding her assailant, and was then dragged into the streets, beaten and hanged for doing so. This chapter references some of CA early women’s rights laws, such as a woman being able to keep her property after a divorce, which wasn’t so much for the concern of women, but to attract wealthy, single women to California as potential wives.

Under Color of Law looks thoroughly, but not only, at African American rights, times of indentured servatude after slavery was ended, and also Mexican anti-segregation movements, the Filipino movement to end anti-miscegenation laws, and the Native American take-over and protest at Alcatraz.

The only chapter not in the time line is the final chapter, and is the one that is probably most personal to the co-author Stan Yogi. It is entitled Behind Barbed Wire and addresses the removal and incarceration of Japanese-Americans during WWII. Stan’s dedication in the beginning of the book reads, “Stan Yogi dedicates this book to his parents…who were incarcerated during WWII and still had faith in the promise of American freedom and justice.”

Although this book is very readable in its entirety, there is no need to read each chapter followed by the other. They stand alone as well researched pieces that could be used as references to each particular issue.

Book Giveaway I would be happy to pass on this book. If you are interested in reading it, leave a comment and I will pick someone at random.

“We elected to print this title on 30% post consumer recycled paper, processed chlorine free. As a result, for this printing we have saved:

22 trees (40′ tall and 6″ diameter)
9,884 gallons of wastewater
7 million BTUs of Total Energy
600 pounds of Solid Waste
2,052 pounds of greenhouse gases”

2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

great addition of the poll…and this sounds like an interesting book.

Comment by Serena (Savvy Verse & Wit)

Fabulous, what a web site it is! This weblog gives valuable
data to us, keep it up.

Comment by mover

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