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Works of Radical Imagination

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER, Bernie is the must-have guidebook to the Bernie Sanders campaign—and the uncompromising candidate behind it. Insightful, funny, and accessible, this biography-in-graphic-novel-form of the presidential candidate explains both his early life and political rise, but also shows the broader political shift that made it possible for a Jewish socialist to rally voters and become a real presidential contender.

Political cartoonist and Kennedy Award winner Ted Rall interviewed Bernie Sanders at length for this book and delved deep into his background to create this one-of-a-kind biography. 

Sanders' upbringing in a struggling working-class family in a hardscrabble section of Brooklyn during the 1950s taught him that poverty is a disease, one that affects us all. Incredibly, the lessons he learned back then are revolutionizing the political process this year, marking the resurgence of political progressivism on the left at the same time as the two-party system seems to be on the way out. From McGovern’s 1972 loss to Nixon to the Occupy movement, Rall shows readers exactly how the American public was primed to embrace a socialist calling for a political revolution.   

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“Rall’s illustrated work, in the same format as his acclaimed Snowden, is an illuminating, clear-headed, straight-shooting argument on why American voters should support and elect Senator Bernie Sanders to president. The first few chapters are an enlightening mini-course in contemporary American government and economics, tracing the Democratic Party’s persistent movement to the right over the past several decades. Sanders, Rall argues, is the only candidate whose passions and commitments favor the American people rather than corporations or big government. Each page is half text and half illustration in Rall’s signature caricature style, a format that serves up a large amount of information at an easy-to-digest pace of one idea per page. Unlike the Snowden book, this could have a potential short shelf life if Sanders isn’t nominated or elected. But in the months leading up to the Democratic Convention, this is an essential survey and solid political ammunition for Sanders supporters, with appeal to politically minded readers.”

“More than a campaign biography, this graphic narrative traces the decline and possible resurgence of liberalism within the Democratic Party.... An effective, if unapologetically partisan, primer on a strong voice from the left to counter the Democrats' rightward shift.”

“What sets this book apart is not that it's a cartoon, but that it's an argument for placing Bernie Sanders in a particular position in U.S. history, namely as the restoration of liberalism to a Democratic Party that hasn't seen it since the McGovern campaign. In fact, a huge chunk of the book is not about Bernie at all, but is a history of the rightward drifting of the Democratic Party over the decades. Another big chunk is a history of Bernie's childhood and career. Both of these sections are well done.”

blog — November 21

Our 2016–2017 Academic Catalog is Here!

Our 2016–2017 academic catalog is here. Download the pdf, and send us an email at academic@sevenstories.com for any questions, comments, or desk or examination copy requests! The catalog's introductory letter to educators can be found below.

Dear educators,

It’s been a strange, trying year. From political coups to police violence to debates over free speech in our universities, the events of today demand an engaged, thorough understanding of the world we live in—not hot takes and misinformation. In our opinion, then, there’s never been a better time to be publishing imaginative, politically engaged voices. Now more than ever, students are eager for new perspectives on topics that once seemed uncontroversial, for independent voices to smash the idols of received wisdom.

No one better exemplifies this spirit of dogged independence than Noam Chomsky. Requiem for the American Dream, his first book devoted entirely to the subject of income inequality, provides a deeply learned, searing historical explanation of how the 99% have been disenfranchised by the ultra-rich. On the heels of his bestselling graphic biography Bernie, Ted Rall’s Trump combats knee-jerk reactions against the titular megalomaniac by telling the broader story of how America's economic decline paved the way for his prominence. Staying on the theme of the United States’ ills, Joel Berg’s America, We Need to Talk gives an in-depth guide to how American citizens can quit using politicians as scapegoats and take responsibility for their nation’s direction. Betsy Hartmann’s The America Syndrome makes the provocative case that apocalyptic thinking has always shaped the American ethos—and that an obsession with the end times has proved more harmful than any other supposed threat. And to round out our red-white-and-blue theme, there’s Linh Dinh’s Postcards from the End of America, a glorious new take on de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America for our ravaged nation.

At Seven Stories, we believe that the imaginative and the analytical are two sides of the same coin. Just as our nonfiction titles are works of inspiration, our fiction titles are engaged with the world. To see what we mean, one need look no further than Ralph Nader’s Animal Envy, a modern-day political fantasy from one of our country’s greatest public advocates. Or Martin Duberman’s Jews Queers Germans, a work of historical fiction that imagines the influential, mostly gay milieu around Kaiser Wilhelm at the turn of the 20th Century. Or the award-winning The Boer War, by Martin Bossenbroek, which intertwines the lives of a young Winston Churchill, a dutch diplomat, and an Afrikaans general, to give us a Rashomon tale of the birth of Apartheid. Finally, Kia Corthron’s magnificent historical novel The Castle Cross the Magnet Carter deftly bridges the political and the poetic in its sweeping look at family, race and loss over the course of an American half-century.

This is just a sample of what you’ll find inside the 2016–2017 academic catalog, and we couldn’t be more pleased to be sharing this list with educators from around the world. We may publish the following titles, but it’s you who bring them to life—by engaging with these books and passing them on, by modifying them and enriching them with your own individual perspectives. And for that we thank you.

At Seven Stories, our policy is to provide you free examination copies of any Seven Stories books in the field in which you teach, without any obligation on your part to adopt the book. Just drop us a line at academic@sevenstories.com. We’d be happy to send you books or answer any questions you might have.

In solidarity,
Seven Stories Press

 

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Twice the winner of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award and a Pulitzer Prize finalist, Ted Rall is a political cartoonist, opinion columnist, graphic novelist, and occasional war correspondent whose work has appeared in hundreds of publications, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Village Voice, and Los Angeles Times. He is the illustrator of the full-length comic in Billionaires & Ballot Bandits: How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps, written by Greg Palast.