Upcoming Event
  • Solidarity

    by Leah Hunt-Hendrix, Astra Taylor
    Price $30.00
    Special Order

Leah Hunt-Hendrix and Astra Taylor at Harvard Book Store


The Past, Present, and Future
of a World-Changing Idea

in conversation with AZIZ RANA


March 13, 2024
7:00 PM ET


Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138


This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store and Boston Review welcome LEAH HUNT-HENDRIX—co-founder of Solidaire and Way to Win—and ASTRA TAYLOR—American Book Award-winning author of The People's Platform—for a discussion of their new book Solidarity: The Past, Present, and Future of a World-Changing Idea. They will be joined in conversation by AZIZ RANA—professor of Law at Boston College Law School and author of The Two Faces of American Freedom.

About Solidarity

Solidarity is often invoked, but it is rarely analyzed and poorly understood. Here, two leading activists and thinkers survey the past, present, and future of the concept across borders of nation, identity, and class to ask: how can we build solidarity in an era of staggering inequality, polarization, violence, and ecological catastrophe? Offering a lively and lucid history of the idea—from Ancient Rome through the first European and American socialists and labor organizers, to twenty-first century social movements like Occupy Wall Street and Black Lives Matter—Hunt-Hendrix and Taylor trace the philosophical debates and political struggles that have shaped the modern world.

Looking forward, they argue that a clear understanding of how solidarity is built and sustained, and an awareness of how it has been suppressed, is essential to warding off the many crises of our present: right-wing backlash, irreversible climate damage, widespread alienation, loneliness, and despair. Hunt-Hendrix and Taylor insist that solidarity is both a principle and a practice, one that must be cultivated and institutionalized, so that care for the common good becomes the central aim of politics and social life.

Praise for Solidarity

“The great turning point of my life was the Reagan-era end of the idea that America was a group project. It was replaced with the notion that we were nothing more than individuals and the results included melting poles and shorter, harder lives for so many. Reversing those trends will require a recovery of solidarity as both an ideal and a practice. This wonderful book helps show the way.” —Bill McKibben, author of The Flag, the Cross, and the Station Wagon: A Graying American Looks Back at his Suburban Boyhood and Wonders What the Hell Happened

“For our age of austerity, debt, and inequality, Astra Taylor and Leah Hunt-Hendrix brilliantly retrieve solidarity and explore its radical potential. Connecting equals across difference, in states and at the global scale, solidarity emphasizes interdependent obligation against grinding hierarchy, including charitable and philanthropic noblesse oblige. This extraordinary book moves from the history of the concept to the present moment and proposes exactly the collective renovation that our political situation desperately requires.” —Samuel Moyn, author of Not Enough: Human Rights in an Unequal World

“While the labor movement taught us to sing, ‘Solidarity Forever,’ working people who struggle to make ends meet have rightly asked, ‘Solidarity for what?’ This book's vision of ‘transformative solidarity’ is an answer to that question informed by history, aware of the forces we're up against, and engaged with some of the most encouraging movement-building of our time. It’s a gift for all of us who want to build a world where everyone can thrive.” —William J. Barber, II, President of Repairers of the Breach and Founding Director of Yale's Center for Public Theology and Public Policy

Masking Policy

Masks are encouraged but not required for this event.
Astra Taylor
Astra Taylor

Astra Taylor

Astra Taylor is a writer, documentarian, and co-founder of the Debt Collective, a union of debtors. She is the author of The Age of Insecurity: Coming Together as Things Fall Apart, Democracy May Not Exist But We’ll Miss It When It is Gone, and The People’s Platform (winner of the American Book Award), among other titles, and the director of What Is Democracy? and other films. Her writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, n+I, The Baffler, and elsewhere and she is an advisor to Lux Magazine and on the editorial board of Hammer & Hope. A former touring member of the band Neutral Milk Hotel, she was the 2023 CBC Massey Lecturer.

Photo Credit: Nye Taylor

Aziz Rana
Aziz Rana

Aziz Rana

Aziz Rana is a professor of law at Boston College Law School, where his research and teaching center on American constitutional law and political development. In particular, his work focuses on how shifting notions of race, citizenship, and empire have shaped legal and political identity since the founding.

His first book, The Two Faces of American Freedom (Harvard University Press) situates the American experience within the global history of colonialism, examining the intertwined relationship in American constitutional practice between internal accounts of freedom and external projects of power and expansion.  His forthcoming book, The Constitutional Bind: How Americans Came to Idolize a Document that Fails Them (University of Chicago Press, 2024), explores the modern emergence of constitutional veneration in the twentieth century -- especially against the backdrop of growing American global authority -- and how veneration has influenced the boundaries of popular politics.

He has written essays and op-eds for such venues as n+1, The Boston Review, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Dissent, New Labor Forum, Jacobin, The Guardian, The Chronicle of Higher Education, The Nation, Jadaliyya, Salon, and The Law and Political Economy Project. He has articles and chapter contributions published or forthcoming with Yale and Oxford University Presses, The University of Chicago Law Review, California Law Review, UCLA Law Review, Texas Law Review, and the Yale Law Journal Forum, among others.

He received his B.A. from Harvard College, his J.D. from Yale Law School, and his Ph.D. in political science from Harvard University.

Leah Hunt-Hendrix
Leah Hunt-Hendrix

Leah Hunt-Hendrix

Leah Hunt-Hendrix was born and raised in New York City. She has a PhD in Religion, Ethics, and Politics from Princeton University where she wrote her dissertation on the Ethics of Solidarity. Leah has founded multiple organizations that have impacted the American political landscape. In 2012, she co-founded Solidaire, a national network of philanthropists dedicated to funding progressive movements, and in 2017, she co-founded Way to Win, a network with a similar structure, this time dedicated to electoral strategy. Both organizations are grounded in building solidarity between major donors and grassroots organizing.

Photo Credit: Emily Lambert

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes

As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.

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