Revolution Books Holiday Party Kicks Off Fund Drive:

Humanity Needs Revolution!
The Revolution Needs Revolution Books!
Revolution Books Needs You!

December 23, 2012 | Revolution Newspaper |


December 14, 2012, there was a really great holiday open house and party at Revolution Books in New York. Eighty people crowded into the store, and they found DJ Macnificent spinning, a jazz duo, a dance performance, messages of solidarity, international food, holiday gift books, and great conversation. The feeling of celebration was fueled by a sense of purpose that RB must not be lost, that it must become financially self-sufficient by early next year; more, to do so it needs to play a much bigger role out in the world—saving Revolution Books is part of saving humanity and the planet from its course of monstrous misery, deprivation, war, and environmental destruction.

Andy Zee, spokesperson for Revolution Books, laid out what the existence of this store means to people: "You can buy your books for less elsewhere. You can donate to organizations that offer charity to meet basic needs of some of those brutalized and abandoned by this system, but there is no place else, no other bookstore, no other culture center, that is a center of a movement for revolution that could make all the difference in the world. . . . And if you're "talkin 'bout a revolution," then you need to know about BA. This is why over the past year RB has been a hub of promoting the BA EVERYWHERE campaign—hosting the fund raising dinners and gatherings for volunteers who were a part of the BAsics Bus Tour—taking this handbook for revolution from talks and writings of Bob Avakian deep into the ghettos here and in the deep South—awakening a yearning for a way out and fusing this revolutionary theory and strategy with people's need and desire to fight back."

One particularly moving part of the evening was when a sustainer of the store read a powerful letter from a prisoner and then added her own thoughts about the importance of sustaining Revolution Books: "I love this letter because it for me really focuses how the situation of my life and what I can sacrifice in order to support this place. I think we all struggle with making decisions about where our resources are going to go. I for one can't read something like this and then not become a sustaining member of this bookstore. My life is incredibly easy. What I can do to support this place by showing up and reading a letter from someone who is locked down somewhere, it's great. But if I let lack of financial resources shut this place down, then the system that we're talking about has won. And that's just the truth, that's how I see it."

People at the party were challenged to take responsibility for getting Revolution Books out into the world with both its mission and making the store financially self-sufficient. People were urged to sign up to be part of teams that would be spearheading the effort. One team will be taking the store into the world "kicking up a ruckus with substance and science," another will be building the internet presence of the store, a third will be building the financial base, and a fourth will be organizing events. People have been very excited about the announced debate in April between Raymond Lotta and Slavoj Žižek on the history of and prospects for communist revolution.

The people attending the store party were very diverse. There were members of the New York Revolution Club, faculty members and students from local schools, long-time political activists and people new to the revolution, people from the movement against mass incarceration, artists, and people who love to read about the world.

The event went late into the evening with people sitting in small groups engaged in intense discussion of the biggest questions facing humanity. Many people stayed for the whole evening and didn't want to leave. The weekend of the party was also the kickoff of an intense effort to win 40 new monthly financial sustainers for the store, and 27 new sustainers have already stepped forward.

One of the messages of solidarity, from a friend of the bookstore who works in the publishing industry, captured the spirit of the evening: "Wish I could be with you in person to share our appreciation of this unique bookstore. All bookstores are precious, but this one is especially so because it points the way to ending an evil system—CAPITALISM—and teaches us all how to fight for a system which provides health, education, housing and dignity to everyone! LONG LIVE REVOLUTION BOOKSTORE!"

Send us your comments.

If you like this article, subscribe, donate to and sustain Revolution newspaper.