Stepping Stones

Stepping Stones : Memoir of a Life Together

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Stepping Stones is a joint memoir by two longtime participants in movements for social change in the United States. Staughton and Alice Lynd have worked for racial equality, against war, with workers and prisoners, and against the death penalty. Coming from similar ethical backgrounds but with very different personalities, the Lynds spent three years in an intentional community in Northeast Georgia during the 1950s. There they experienced a way of living that they later sought to carry into the larger society. Both were educated to be teachers-Staughton as a professor of history and Alice as a teacher of preschool children. But both sought to address the social problems of their times through more than their professions. After being involved in the Southern civil rights movement and the movement against the war in Vietnam in the 1960s, both Staughton and Alice became lawyers. In the Youngstown, Ohio, area they helped workers to create a variety of rank-and-file organizations. After retirement, they became advocates for prisoners who were sentenced to death or confined under supermaximum security conditions.
Through trips to Central America in the 1980s, Staughton and Alice became familiar with the concept of "accompaniment." To them, accompaniment means placing themselves at the side of the poor and oppressed, not as dispensers of charity or as guilty fugitives from the middle class, but as equals in a joint process to which each person brings an essential kind of expertise. Throughout, the Lynds, who became Quakers in the early 1960s, have been committed to nonviolence. Their story will encourage young people seeking lives of public service in the cause of creating a better world.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 208 pages
  • 154.94 x 223.52 x 17.78mm | 317.51g
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739127500
  • 9780739127506
  • 1,594,703

Review quote

Without radicals like the Lynds, there might have been no American Revolution, no Abolition, no Suffrage, no New Deal, no environmental laws and so on... Through all the storms, Staughton and Alice have represented the basic blend of moral force, critical inquiry and trust in the evidence of things unseen that have helped rank-and-file people become the driving force wherever great social reforms were achieved. -- Tom Hayden In this moving double memoir, Alice and Staughton Lynd show us a way to live with love and integrity in a world of violence and inequality. They take the reader down unexpected roads, making difficult choices that often require harsh sacrifice. Together they find beauty where others might find only despair. Their lives practicing 'accompaniment' inspire hope that a better world is possible and show us that the journey is worth the pain. Read this remarkable story and your spirit will be enriched. -- Michael Honey, author of Going Down Jericho Road: The Memphis Strike, Martin Luther King's Last Campaign Staughton and Alice Lynd forged an extraordinary partnershiop over half a century, which carried them from Harvard and Radcliffe to the deep South, from there to union organizing in the Midwest, and then to experiences in Latin America and the Middle East. Through that winding journey, they were rock-like in their commitment to peace and social justice, and steadfast in their bond to one another. They remain a model of two people unbreakably joined together by a life-long commitment to build a better, kindlier world. This is a memoir to inspire the next generation. -- Howard Zinn, author of A People's History of the United States and professor emeritus of Political Science, Boston University Alice and Staughton Lynd have written a memoir of a shared life lived in service to ordinary people, with rigorous commitment to nonviolence. Their journey led them to each other than then together to the civil rights, labor, anti-war and prisoner's rights movements. Theirs is a story of lives given daily in thought and action towards building a world of peace and justice. The Lynds imagine their children and grandchildren taking in their experience and building on it, and hope we will do the same. The meat and the challenge of this book are not in the account of movements and organizing, although it could be read just for the history. The real grist in this mill is the account of two people searching for community, for peace, and for justice. Fellowship, Fall 2009 In their lifelong commitment to each other and to their common cause, Alice and Staughton Lynd provide an inspiring vision of what 'the personal is the political' can really mean. -- Jeremy Brecher, author of Strike!
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About Staughton Lynd

Staughton Lynd and Alice Lynd have edited Nonviolence in America: A Documentary History; Homeland: Oral Histories of Palestine and Palestinians; Rank and File: Personal Histories by Working-Class Organizers; and The New Rank and File.
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Table of contents

Foreword Acknowledgments Introduction Beginnings Son of Middletown When I Was Little Friends A Premature New Leftist Music and Dance and Discovering Childhood Story Street Community Macedonia After Macedonia Starfish The Sixties Cooper Square We Shall Overcome A Trip to Hanoi Draft Counseling War Crimes and the End of the Sixties Accompaniment The Idea of "Accompaniment" Doing Oral History Together We Become Lawyers Our Union Makes Us Strong Nicaragua Palestine The Worst of the Worst Mama Bear Lucasville Mr. X The Death Penalty and the Prison System Afterwords Covering Little Seeds A Letter to Martha Retrospectives Happy
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