Social change in Shoprite, aisle 5

Millions of Americans use supplemental food benefits each month. Along with the stigma of holding up the supermarket checkout line comes a large helping of empathy with other people.

The selective awareness of Wisdom 2.0

Take an ancient practice, remove it from its context, strip away its ethical imperatives and sell it for a profit. Is the goal of the corporate mindfulness movement to comfort the already comfortable? 

Can philanthropic oligarchy nurture economic justice?

Will NGOs and foundations ever be able to look at their moneyed benefactors and challenge how they generated their wealth? The national correspondent of NonProfit Quarterly takes on our series on the role of money in the transformation of society. 

Did Socrates die in vain? Rescuing education from school

Are school children educated, socialized, or indoctrinated?  If there’s any wonder remaining in a student after being swamped with established knowledge throughout the day, she or he would have to pursue critical thinking in the evenings.

To survive bipolar disorder, I needed people who didn't love me

There is a unique hope in a stranger's kindness. Despite my catatonic state, despite barely recognising the people I loved, I knew that a society with a system that cares the way the NHS does, is somewhere I could learn to live. This is the fourth article in our politics of mental health series. Content warning.

Why green growth won’t transform the economy

Green growth is a myth. Because it ignores the social, political and personal dimensions of sustainability, it can never cut deep enough into the structures of self and society to secure solutions to the crises that we face.

The unspoken atrocity of standardized education

As the corporate takeover of public education proceeds in the US and other countries, schools cease to be training grounds for social transformation. We are not just fighting for our children, but for the liberation of our country. 

Feminism helped me survive a forced marriage

I have Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of fleeing a forced marriage a decade ago. Writing and feminist activism helped me find a space for survival. This is the second article in Transformation's series on the politics of mental health.

Mental health: why we're all sick under neoliberalism

We don't understand mental health, allocating the label only to those who are struggling. So good mental health, and its political causes, become invisible. An introduction to Transformation's new series on the politics of mental health. Content warning: anxiety, suicidal thoughts.

The Religion of the Future

How can we organize a society that gives us a better chance to be fully alive? How can we reinvent religion so that it liberates us instead of consoling us? A new book provides some answers.

Philanthropic power erosion: the Edge Fund alternative

When power and privilege are acknowledged and addressed, decisions over funding can unite people instead of dividing them. This is the ninth article in our series on the role of money in the transformation of society.

The Labour Party's real challenge is finding a radical voice

Will the UK Labour Party ever really, vocally resist Conservative policies? They should be engaging young voters on global social inequality.

Uganda's 'Kill the Gays' bill: Pastor Martin Ssempa and the anti-gay lobby

You can now be imprisoned for life under Uganda's anti-homosexual law. It was pushed through by religious pastors, whose moralising arm-twisting has silenced moderate voices. If you disagree with them, you may face blackmail.

Organizations as communities: lessons from Deir Mar Musa in Syria

Successful communities welcome disagreement and approach conflict constructively. Maybe the 21st century is the time to think about all organizations as communities, and to see where this radical change in direction might take us. 

“Nuestra Escuela:” bringing love and creativity back into education

Traditional schooling has been wreaking havoc on individuals and communities for 200 years. It’s time to replace it with a new system of self-designed and community-supported webs of learning.

Demand homes not jails: queer homelessness is being criminalized

Cities globally are starting to criminalize homelessness: banning begging and making free food provision illegal. I work within LGBTQ communities, whose multiple oppressions lead to a high level of homelessness. When I see police disrupting rough sleepers, I remember their life stories.

Nothing about us, without us: reversing the power dynamics of philanthropy

If money is power, then control over money has to be democratized. What if grants to social movements of sex workers were distributed by sex workers themselves? This is the eighth article in our series on money and social transformation.

Unlocking the transformative potential of storytelling

When people connect to political issues through personal stories, they see them in a different way. They don’t just see democracy in the abstract, they see ‘my democracy.’ The transformative potential of storytelling is written into the fabric of our lives.

Not just about the money: corporatization is weakening activism and empowering big business

Activist and advocacy organizations increasingly look and act like multinational corporations. Is it worth the price? This is the seventh installment in our series on money and social transformation.

Benefits Street: how austerity transformed makeover TV

Benefits Street was born from coalition government rhetoric: no one should receive 'anything for nothing'. The failure to transform is always personal. Nobody should be helped.

A year of living generously

Genuine happiness involves sharing time and money, but beware of thinking that the poor belong to some other tribe. Do not judge, presume or patronize. There are no unimportant acts of kindness.

On a good day she would kiss me back: transforming trauma into creative energy and action

Instead of giving in, the deepest thing we can do with trauma is to transmute pain into actions that heal ourselves and help other people. A powerful meditation on love, loss, recovery and resistance.

How I learned to let go and be myself

I was bullied in school for not fitting in, while at home my father abused alcohol to cope with his pain. I learned there is something wrong with some people. To avoid this trap of authority, we must allow for the queer and glorious differences between us.

The sharing economy: a short introduction to its political evolution

Can the sharing economy movement address the root causes of the world’s converging crises? Not unless sharing is promoted in relation to human rights, democracy and social justice. This is the sixth article in our series on the role of money in the transformation of society.  

How I stopped watching porn for one year and why I'm not going back

I remember when I first discovered internet porn – I was 17 years old. Fascinated by this world of unleashed sexual expression and fantasy, I couldn’t get enough of it. I thought I'd outgrow my porn habit over time. But I never did.

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