Community development’s social justice principles are under threat from the current resurgence of far-Right politics. The dangerous escalation of economic inequalities calls for new ideas on power and new approaches to practice. Rooted in radical community development’s strong theoretical foundation in Freire and Gramsci, the body of knowledge is expanded to make sense of these challenging times, introducing exciting new ideas for those working in this field.
Written in an engaging style, linking theory to action using cartoons, international case studies and key concept summaries, the fully updated third edition of this bestselling book offers an inspiring approach to practice for all those committed to social and environmental justice. It will be an invaluable resource for students in community development and related disciplines.
"Neoliberalism desperately needs challenging and this important book provides an incisive and compelling account of how it can be done. Essential reading for all those interested in this vital area of theory and practice." Steve Rogowski, Social Worker
“Europe currently faces many challenges: poverty, inequality, migration, increased racism, xenophobia and populism, the democratic deficit and the environmental crisis. Ledwith makes sense of these and promotes critically reflective community development practice.” Alex Downie, European Community Development Network
“A passionate and wide-ranging overview of the events and ideas that have brought us to this moment, and a challenge to community development to change the story.” Rebekah Goddard, UK Community Foundations.
“With inspiring case studies and provocative questions, this is essential reading for anyone who dreams of creating a more just and equitable society.” Rosemary Moreland, University of Ulster.
"Provides an excellent critical overview of contemporary community development theories and practice." Roger Green, Goldsmiths, University of London
"Excellent and detailed overview of community development and the need for a radical re-think in all community and youth work practice." Rick Bowler, University of Sunderland
Margaret Ledwith lives in Lancaster where she is Emeritus Professor of Community Development and Social Justice at the University of Cumbria. She is also a coordinator of the international Collaborative Action Research Network.
Opening thoughts: Community development in neoliberal times;
Power and the political context;
Changing the story;
Radical community development and the role of stories;
Radical community development in action;
Researching with the community;
The power of ideas;
Critiques of Freire and Gramsci;
Taking Freire into intersectionality;
Reclaiming the radical agenda.