All a Thread

Submitted By:
Tracey Goodson Barrett, Gill St. Bernard's School, Gladstone, NJ

Viral Justice: How We Grow the World We Want by Ruha Benjamin
Princeton University Press, October 11, 2022

How do you change the world? According to Ruha Benjamin, one person at a time. Benjamin is an internationally recognized writer, speaker, and professor of African American Studies at Princeton University and is the award-winning author of Race After Technology: Abolitionist Tools for the New Jim Code. In Viral Justice: How We Grow the World We Want, Benjamin delivers a compelling personal narrative and manifest that expertly weaves her experiences into an illuminating fabric of transformative solutions to social and racial injustices. “We can’t just critique the world as it is,” she writes, “but build the world as it should be to make justice irresistible.” She challenges readers to individually confront how we participate in systems that are unjust and asserts that we all must first look within ourselves to accomplish meaningful, collective change. Using the 2020 pandemic and racial reckoning in the U.S. as a lens, Benjamin describes “viral justice” as a way to create communities of care by rethinking the impact of small individual actions. We are all a thread within our social ecosystems, and our individual actions can elevate awareness around social and economic inequalities.

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