A Handbook for Twenty-First Century Activists
By Jason Del Gandio
Radicals have important messages to deliver but are often so
caught up in the passion of their causes that they lose sight of effective
communication -- which is their biggest tool. Crucial to the cause is
the ability to speak with clarity and intelligence, without underestimating
the challenge of breaking new ground and winning new converts.
Activists often suffer from a credibility gap because of their lack
of coherent message and strategic delivery. Rhetoric for Radicals
addresses and helps solve these problems. It provides the tools to develop
the all-important communication skills necessary to be effectively heard.
If you accept that communication creates the social world, then you
will agree that changing the way we communicate can change the world.
Del Gandio is a writer, thinker, teacher, and activist
dedicated to local and global justice. Born in 1974 and raised in a
New Jersey working class family, Jason spent his summers doing construction
and carpentry with his father. There he learned the rigors of manual
labor and the realities of capitalism. Jason was attracted to underground
subcultures and non-traditional experiences during his late teens, which
led him to philosophical inquiry and cultural critique. He began pursuing
questions about human existence, the purpose of life, and alternative
ways of being in the world.
a college student, he studied philosophy and speech communication. As
a graduate student, he studied the philosophy of communication and performance
studies. He wrote his doctoral dissertation on the human vibe, which,
to the best of his knowledge, is the first and only study of its kind.
During his graduate studies, he was heavily impacted by the 1999 W.T.O.
protests in Seattle, WA. Witnessing fifty-thousand people shut down
an international institution moved Jason in a different direction. He
turned to activism and the politics of globalization.
then he has marched in the streets and stood face-to-face with riot
police. He has worked on fair trade, Latin American solidarity, and
anti-war campaigns. He has designed and taught college courses such
as The Rhetoric of Globalization and Public Advocacy. And he
has traveled to Venezuela where he experienced the Bolivarian revolution—a
deeply moving experience that opened his eyes to the real possibility
of social revolution. Over the past few years, Jason has been working
on the theory and practice of “neo-radicalism”—a way
of changing the world through rhetoric and communication. That is the
underlying theme to his first book, Rhetoric for Radicals: A Handbook
for Twenty-First Century Activists. Some of his other writings
can be viewed online at Dissident Voice, the Journal of Aesthetics and
Protest, Re-Public, Metaphilm, ephemera, Liminalities, and Cultural
is currently an Assistant Professor of Public Communication at Temple
University in Philadelphia.
His life's goal:
To change the world without taking power.