In his 2012 book Occupya short study on the social, economic and political inequalities that led to the Occupy movement – Noam Chomsky noted the importance of active reading:

“Reading a book doesn’t mean just turning the pages. It means thinking about it, identifying parts that you want to go back to, asking how to place it in a broader context, pursuing the ideas. There’s no point in reading a book if you let it pass before your eyes and then forget about it ten minutes later. Reading a book is an intellectual exercise, which stimulates thought, questions, imagination.”

As one of the world’s preeminent public intellectuals and anarchist theorists, Chomsky has dedicated a lifetime to the study of complex philosophical issues and real-world problems. Culled from his many important political writings by the Chomsky List, find 12 books on activism recommended by Noam Chomsky below.


New Left: A Collection of Essays by Priscilla Long

Days and Nights of Love and War by Eduardo Galeano

The Essays of A.J. Muste by A.J. Muste

Cochabamba!: Water Rebellion in Bolivia by Oscar Olivera and Tom Lewis

Revolutionary Movement in Britain, 1900-21 by Walter Kendall

SNCC: The New Abolitionists by Howard Zinn

The American Socialist Movement 1897-1912 by Ira Kipnis

The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community by David Korten

Political repression in modern America from 1870 to the present by Robert Justin Goldstein

Sir! No Sir! – The Suppressed Story of the GI Movement to End the War in Vietnam by David Zeiger

The New Student Left: An Anthology by Mitchell Cohen and Dennis Hale

The Women are Marching: Second Sex and the Palestinian Revolution by Philippa Strum

(via The Chomsky List)

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