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Works of Radical Imagination

Book cover for Snowden
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As many as 1.4 million citizens with security clearance saw some or all of the same documents that would later be leaked by Edward Snowden. Why did he, and no one else, decide to step forward and take on the risks associated with becoming a whistleblower and then a fugitive? To address this question, Rall delves into Snowden's early life and work experience, his personality, and the larger issues of privacy, new surveillance technologies, and government intrusion. He describes Snowden's political vision and hopes for the future. In a way, this is a book that tells two stories: Snowden's own, and also a larger one in which we all find ourselves on the threshold of tremendous technological upheaval and political change.

Snowden is a portrait of a brave young man standing up to the most powerful government in the world and, if not winning, at least reaching a stand-off. It's an invitation to us all to measure our courage and listen to our consciences in asking ourselves what we might have done in his shoes.

Book cover for Snowden
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“A dramatic, evocative, thoughtful and very accessible account of one of the most important stories of the century – and one of the most ominous, unless citizens are aroused to action to rein in abusive state power.”

“Rall, unlike practically everyone else, allowed [President Bush] no honeymoon ... Given all that has happened since, it appears he was right.”

“Through comically drawn figures and thorough yet uncomplicated blocks of text, Rall chronicles former NSA contractor Snowden’s early life, work experience, personality and political evolution. The unabashedly pro-Snowden deep-dive serves to help answer the questions: Of the countless government employees who knew of these programs, why was Snowden the one to risk everything to uncover them? And would we have done the same had we been in his position?”

“Ted Rall's story of the heroic whistleblower, Edward Snowden, is essential reading as ‘Big Brother’ starts having to look over its shoulders.”

“A darkly funny look at our ongoing surveillance nightmare. ... An entertaining, exhaustive, and approachable look at an incredibly important and relevant topic, because information security affects everyone whether you like it or not."”

“Written for adults but accessible to teens and sophisticated tweens, this work belongs in all libraries and will supply focus and background – if not unanimity – to everyone interested in government oversight issues.”

blog — November 17

Guernica Annual, Volume 2

These days, a lot of people are talking about Guernica, the online magazine of ideas, art, poetry, and fiction. They’ve published great writing from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Tariq Ali, Rivka Galchen, Jesse Ball, and Porochista Khakpour, to name an eclectic few. And they also put great work online and for free, providing a blueprint for how a great journal can thrive in the digital age.

What people may not know is that Guernica also publishes an annual book showcasing some of their best work. This year’s volume 2 includes:

Blackness as the Second Person: An interview with poet and recent MacArthur ‘Genius Grant’ winner Claudia Rankine

The Rise and Fall of Public Housing in NYC: A moving personal history of the Parkside Houses by Richard Price

How to Be a Woman in Tehran: Habibe Jafarian on the respect due to those who choose to stay

Girl: Alexander Chee on not knowing who you are until you put on a mask

Unwanted Alive: J. Malcolm Garcia on the deportation of U.S. veterans

and Pull Back to Reveal: An interview with Ben Wizner, privacy advocate and legal advisor to Edward Snowden

The volume also includes new work from Masha Gessen, a conversation with Maggie Nelson, and fiction from Alexandra Kleeman. All proceeds go toward compensating writers and editors, and keeping Guernica’s award-winning online content free to all.

So take a look, because we indies are all in this together. You can find Guernica #2 for sale online through our comrades at Haymarket Books.


Ted Rall

Twice the winner of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award and a Pulitzer Prize finalist, TED RALL is a radical syndicated political cartoonist, opinion columnist, graphic novelist, and occasional war correspondent whose work has appeared in hundreds of publications, including the New York TimesWashington PostVillage Voice, and Los Angeles Times. For Seven Stories Press, he is the illustrator of the full-length comic Billionaires & Ballot Bandits: How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps (2012), written by Greg Palast, and the author and illustrator of The Book of Obama (2012), The Anti-American Manifesto (2010), and After We Kill You, We Will Welcome You Back as Honored Guests (Hill and Wang 2014). His most recent books are Snowden (2015), Bernie (2016), Trump (2016), and Francis, the People's Pope (2018).