I reviewed a book yesterday that I think — the first part of it, anyway — every political leader should consult. One or two statements — anecdotes — early in the book, if applied to our lives, could change the world. We could sure use it in our country right now:
“My grandmother, well into her 80s, would often sit on her porch smiling. She had spent the war hiding in a cemetery in Belgium, where she buried her prayer book, published in 1895. I read from it on Yom Kippur. ‘Why, are you smiling?’ I would ask. ‘Because my neighbors are happy,’ she’d reply. ‘And when they are happy, I can live in peace’.” (Jim Torczyner, Rights-Based Community Practice and Academic Activism in a Turbulent World)
There’s much more to this book, but it’s an academic book, and those are often incredibly expensive. This one is $45 on Kindle; $165 as a bound book, so I don’t think its value will reach many people.
The astonishing and inspiring thing about my job is how many people are out there attempting to DO something. We’re just a bunch of busy creatures striving and hoping and attempting and, apparently, writing. A lot of excellent books never see the inside of a “legit” bookstore, are never sold to a “legit” publisher.
That said, I’d better get back to work…