WorldChanging, The Book: You Have the Power To Change the World
The pregnancy is almost over and our friends at WorldChanging are about to bring into the world their first book: WorldChanging: A User's Guide for the 21st Century. Alex Steffen described the book to me as: "the best ideas we could find for protecting the planet and creating a new kind of civilization". Hey, you had me at "Hello"!
We haven't got our hands on a copy yet (soon, my precioussss), but you can be sure that when we do, we'll bring you a full review. Here's what some of the people who did read it had to say:Al Gore:
Worldchanging: A User's Guide for the 21st Century is a compendium of solutions, some little known but well proven, some innovative and new, some bold but as yet untried. This book not only shows what is already possible, but also helps all of us imagine what might be - in our own homes, in our communities, and for the planet as a whole. Taken together, these solutions present a picture of a future that is not dark or catastrophic, but one that is full of hope and within our grasp. To build that future, we need a generation of everyday heroes, people who - whatever their walks of life - have the courage to think in fresh ways and to act to meet this planetary crisis head-on. This book belongs in the library of every person who aspires to be part of that generation.
Their book, a compilation of their work over the last few years, is nothing less than The Whole Earth Catalog, that hippie bible, retooled for the iPod generation.It's a compendium of everything a younger generation of environmental activists has to offer: creativity, digital dexterity, networking ability, an Internet-era optimism about the future, and a deep concern about not only green issues but related questions of human rights, poverty, and social justice. The book's pragmatism is refreshing: "We can do this" is the constant message, and there are enough examples to leave little doubt that sheer cleverness is not what we're lacking as we approach our uncertain future.
Climate champion Laurie David calls it "The seminal resource guide for anyone concerned about today and the future." Earth Day founder Denis Hayes says, "Worldchanging might well be the most complete, compelling articulation of the possible look and feel and actual operation of a sustainable society ever written." New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert says simply: "Read it: it may change your life."
And last but not least, Bruce Sterling wrote this Viridian Letter to remind people of how important a succesful launch is for this book.
The proper time for you to buy it is now. Why? Because the modern publishing system, such as it is, has become as deranged and sclerotic as the movie business, so a big early roll-out counts for a lot in their ridiculous biz calculations. [...] I want you to buy three of them. Buy one for yourself, buy two more as propaganda, I mean "gifts," and give them to someone older than yourself and younger than yourself, so as to induce a nice demographic spread across the reader-buyer user-base.
If this tome becomes as big a hit as its spiritual ancestor the WHOLE EARTH CATALOG, we can accelerate the change to a high-tech green 21C by years. [...] They're going to read this thing, and they're going to have stretch-marks all over their heads, because in their morose sorrow during years of domination by fundie creeps, they've forgotten what new ideas look like and this book is full of them. You won't have to lift a finger to affect this change within them -- for these are the heavy guns of the movement here, assembled in battalion. I've been showing my copy to scientists, engineering professors, government workers -- serious, seasoned people, reality-based-community people. They are awestruck. And justly so.
Read the whole Bruce Sterling note here.
Finally, there's the book tour. All the dates are here. If you can, go. Bring a few friends, a few ideas and some vision. Lets build the future all together, as allies. Take action.
But don't forget, buy the book (released November 1st, but you can pre-order it now).