For your summer reading and surfing pleasure:

“An Unreasonable Woman” by Diane Wilson (published by Chelsea Green). A true autobiographical story that is as engaging as a good novel. Written by a fourth-generation commercial fisherwoman in Texas who gradually got drawn into leading a fight against a multinational polluter and regulators who turned a blind eye. The writing style is stunningly original, full of humor and irony, authentic dialogue, and rich images and similes.

“Patrols” by Walter Dean Myers (HarperCollins). A most unusual children’s book about war. Focuses on a U.S. soldier in Vietnam and his fears and feelings about the opposing army. Compelling graphics.

“Crossing Bok Chitto” by Tim Tingle (Cinco Puntos). A beautifully illustrated children’s story about Choctaws in Mississippi who helped nearby slaves escape to freedom.

“Saving Troy” by William B. Patrick (Hudson Whitman). The author spent a year with firefighters in Troy, N.Y., and provides an insider, non-sugarcoated account of the psychological as well as physical stresses they face. A rare up-close-and-personal window into a blue-collar occupation.

“Hokum” edited by Paul Beatty (Bloomsbury). While this substantial collection is billed as an “anthology of African American humor,” many of the items have intensely serious overtones. Includes poetry, jokes, short stories, rap lyrics and much more by dozens of the best known Black writers and public figures throughout American history.

“Re-Inventing the People” by Shelton Stromquist (University of Illinois). An academic study that argues that the failure of much of modern liberalism to embrace class issues has its roots in the same blind spot in the Progressive movement more than a hundred years ago.

“Letters from Young Activists” edited by Berger, Boudin, and Farrow (Nation Books). Thoughts from an impressively diverse group of nearly 50 young activists about issues they face in their work and within the progressive movement.

“A Right to Housing” edited by Rachel Bratt, Michael Stone and Chester Hartman (Temple University). A comprehensive examination of the housing crisis in America, why past responses have failed, and what should be done.

“Inside Toyland” by Christine L. Williams (University of California). A Texas sociologist worked for about six weeks each at two different toy stores, getting an inside view of class, race and gender issues in the large-scale retail industry.

“Strikes, Picketing, and Inside Campaigns: A Legal Guide for Unions” by Robert M. Schwartz (Work Rights Press). A practical and readable step-by-step guide to the legal aspects of setting up, conducting, and concluding a strike.

“Turning Life Into Fiction” by Robin Hemley (Graywolf). A guide for the many aspiring fiction writers who aren’t sure where to get authentic material. Talks about how to keep a journal, write down one’s dreams, build on stories told by elders, and other techniques. Includes exercises.

www.walmartworkersrights.org — Has a short, clever, and funny video drawing attention to the decision by singer Garth Brooks to front for Wal-Mart. Features a take-off on his old hit, “Friends in Low Places,” that is transformed into “Friends with Low Wages.” Take a look, and then e-mail your friends with the link.

www.dminkler.com — Poster artist Doug Minkler makes available some of his images for free download.

www.ironweedfilms.com — A new effort to promote progressive, independent films and encourage people to organize house parties to watch them.

— World Wide Work is published by the American Labor Education Center

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