Class Matters Workshops

Download this brochure for more information on Class Matters workshops.

If you're interested in hosting a workshop, please click here for a brochure, or contact me about booking an event.

Order Class Matters

Class Matters book cover

Order Class Matters: Cross-Class Alliance Building for Middle-Class Activists by Betsy Leondar-Wright (New Society Publishers, 2005).

Press Coverage of CM

Classist Comments

What's the most classist thing you ever heard someone say?

(I'm not talking about someone like Bill O'Reilly or your right-wing uncle. More specifically, what's the most classist thing you ever heard a liberal or progressive person say?)

Read five interviewees' answers — and my own.

Class and Other Identities

How do you experience class differently because of your race, ethnic group, religion, gender, age, or other identity? What class dynamics do you notice within your identity groups?

Here's how a few visitors answered those questions:

And answers from the Class Matters book:

Linda Stout

Linda Stout

Linda Stout

Linda Stout grew up in North Carolina, daughter of a "mill-town girl" and a tenant farmer, later a mill worker. She was a 13th generation Quaker who grew up inspired by the Quakers' tradition of speaking up for their beliefs. Her home had no indoor water or plumbing. Other kids were told not to play with her because she was "white trash." A devastating car accident disabled her mother, who was confined to their trailer because she lacked a wheelchair, not even leaving it for Linda's high school graduation. Linda figured out on her own how to apply for college and scholarships, then had to drop out when college costs rose and her scholarship didn't. She worked in a hosiery mill, then in offices.

She started the Piedmont Peace Project in North Carolina in 1984, and with others slowly built it into one of the strongest multi-racial, multi-issue low-income organizations in the state. It won the National Grassroots Peace Award. In a very conservative area, they gradually swayed their Congressman's votes until he supported limiting the military budget and expanding domestic spending. They were banned from meeting places, had their office vandalized, and had threats from the KKK. After 10 years at PPP, she moved on in search of how to build power and do movement building at the national level. She moved to Massachusetts and directed a foundation, the Peace Development Fund, before starting a new organization, Spirit in Action, where she is now the director.

  • Article

    Invisible Walls: What keeps working-class people out of coalitions?

    Why haven't we yet learned to build more effective multiracial, multiclass organizations in the United States? We'll begin to find some answers if we look closely at the invisible walls, or barriers, that low-income people and people of color often encounter when joining primarily middle-class and white organizations."

    Excerpts from Bridging the Class Divide and Other Lessons for Grassroots Organizing, by Linda Stout

  • Interview

    Reaching across the walls

    An interview with Linda Stout