Transformational Change and Revolutionary Love

TIPPETT: You’ve said … an animating question for you is “How does transformational change happen…?”

ALEXANDER: I think very often people are waiting for the next great leader to emerge, not recognizing that that’s actually not how the history unfolded … Throughout history you see that when ordinary people begin to believe that their own lives matter and that their voices matter and use their own power — the power to not cooperate with the status quo, and to dare to dream that another reality is possible — it is possible to shake the foundations.

TIPPETT: And how do you think all of this has shaped, evolved your sense of what it means to be human?

ALEXANDER: I’ve been thinking a lot lately about this notion of “revolutionary love” and what that means … I’m not talking about the romantic love, or the idealized version of love, but the simple act of caring for one another, and being aware of our connectedness as human beings, and also the reality of our suffering, and the reality that we make a lot of mistakes, and we struggle and we fail … And if we are going to evolve spiritually, morally, as human beings, we’re going to … resist that impulse, that fear-driven impulse to divide and label and react with punitiveness rather than care and concern.

Who We Want to Become: Beyond the New Jim Crow (Unedited) | Michelle Alexander • Krista Tippett