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Other Books by Ira Chaleff
Many of the topics explored in "The Limits of Violence" relate to a broader institutional context dealt with by Ira Chaleff in his international best seller "The Courageous Follower: Standing Up To and For Our Leaders" (3rd Edition, November 2009, Berret-Koehler Publishers™).
Intelligent Disobedience - Doing Right When You Are Told To Do Wrong", Ira Chaleff offers advice on judging whether disobedience is called for, how to effectively express opposition, and how to create a culture where, rather than “just following orders,” citizens are educated and encouraged to think about whether those orders make sense. (1st Edition, July 2015, Berret-Koehler Publishers™).
About the Author
Ira Chaleff’s author of The Limits of Violence political consciousness was formed during the early 1960’s when he was an under-graduate student at the University of California at Berkeley. It was the height of the Civil Rights movement that fought to bring equal rights and protection of the law to African-Americans. He was one of 800 students arrested in the first mass sit-in demonstration in the North of the U.S. in support of freedom of speech on campus and of the courageous groups working to end the apartheid system that existed in the Southern U.S.
He spent many years trying to create a saner world before mankind annihilated itself through nuclear war during the cold war period. Some of these efforts led him to follow leaders who proved to be no better at responsibly using power than those who ran the system that needed to be changed. He eventually rejoined the mainstream of society and has attempted to prevent or remedy abuses of power through his classic book "The Courageous Follower: Standing Up To and For Our Leaders", first published in 1995 and now in its third edition.
Ira engaged in the project that became “The Limits of Violence” after reading about the atrocities committed in Sierra Leone in West Africa during its civil war that lasted from 1991 to 2002. He was grateful that the figure of Elan Le Vieux appeared as a way to respond to the unspeakable acts committed there in the name of revolution. Having been sensitized by this project to the challenges of conducting revolution productively, he traveled to Chiapas, Mexico in 2002 to see for himself the impact of the Zapatistas, who were developing new philosophies of revolution.
In 2008 he was also fortunate to be invited to Sierra Leone to address its parliamentary leaders who were trying to stabilize the country after its devastating war. The events that led to his engagement with “The Limits of Violence” had come full circle.