Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Navigation

How the Rural Poor Got Power

Narrative of a Grass-Roots Organizer

2003
Author:

Paul Wellstone
Foreword by Robert Coles and Frances Fox Piven

How the Rural Poor Got Power

The gripping story behind Paul Wellstone’s progressive legacy

Before he was a senator, before he was a nationally known advocate for the disenfranchised and a tireless supporter of public policies to alleviate poverty, Paul Wellstone devoted his time and legendary energy to grassroots organizing. This narrative features interviews with citizens and shows Wellstone observing and participating in the ideals to which he devoted his life: helping poor people gain a political voice.

A landmark. Paul Wellstone has written a book about social action with simple stylistic grace and honesty.

New York Times Book Review

Before he was a senator, before he was a nationally known advocate for the disenfranchised and a tireless supporter of public policies to alleviate poverty, Paul Wellstone devoted his time and legendary energy to grassroots organizing. How the Rural Poor Got Power describes Wellstone’s experiences as a political activist in rural Minnesota. Working with senior citizens, struggling farmers, and single mothers, Wellstone created a coalition to address transportation, access to health care, and welfare benefits issues. This narrative features interviews with citizens and shows Wellstone observing and participating in the ideals to which he devoted his life: helping poor people gain a political voice.

How the Rural Poor Got Power

Paul Wellstone (1944–2002) was professor of political science at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, and worked as a political organizer before being elected to the Senate in 1990. His untimely death in a plane crash during the 2002 election galvanized public interest in his vision for progressive politics. His work, ideas, and beliefs are described in The Conscience of a Liberal, available in paperback from the University of Minnesota Press.

How the Rural Poor Got Power

A landmark. Paul Wellstone has written a book about social action with simple stylistic grace and honesty.

New York Times Book Review