One Week to Change the World: An Oral History of the 1999 WTO Protests (Paperback)

One Week to Change the World: An Oral History of the 1999 WTO Protests By DW Gibson Cover Image

One Week to Change the World: An Oral History of the 1999 WTO Protests (Paperback)


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The definitive history of Seattle’s 1999 World Trade Organization protests, featuring over 100 original interviews and timed to the event’s twenty-fifth anniversary.

One week in late 1999, more than 50,000 people converged on Seattle. Their goal: to shut down the World Trade Organization conference and send a message that working-class people would not quietly accept the runaway economic globalization that threatened their livelihoods. Though their mission succeeded, it was not without blowback. Violent confrontations between police and protestors resulted in hundreds of arrests and millions of dollars in property damage. But the images of tear gas and smashed windows that flashed across TVs and newspapers were not an accurate representation of what actually happened that week.

In the oral history One Week to Change the World, award-winning journalist DW Gibson pieces together a complex and compelling account of what really went down in Seattle, immersing you in the angst that defined the end of a millennium, complete with fight clubs and Y2K doomsday scenarios. In more than 100 original interviews with protestors, police, politicians, anarchists, artists, activists, union members, and many others, Gibson reconstructs the events in gripping detail; documents its antecedents and aftermath; and shows how so many of its themes remain just as pressing today, including the vitalness and difficulty of grassroots activism, the aspirations and limitations of globalization, the militarization of policing, the sensationalism of the media, and the undeniable power of the people.

Timed to the 25th anniversary of the protests, this book is a page-turning drama, an essential history, and a practical handbook for how to make one’s voice heard.
DW Gibson is most recently the author of 14 Miles: Building the Border Wall. His previous books include the award-winning The Edge Becomes the Center: An Oral History of Gentrification in the Twenty-First Century and Not Working: People Talk About Losing a Job and Finding Their Way in Today’s Changing Economy.  He shared a National Magazine Award for his work on “This is the Story of One Block in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn” for New York magazine. His work has also appeared in Harper’s, The Atlantic, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. Gibson’s radio work includes cohosting the podcast There Goes the Neighborhood, guest hosting various news programs for WNYC, and reading original essays for Live From Here, as well as All Things Considered. Gibson serves as director of Art Omi: Writers in Ghent, New York, and he cofounded Sangam House, a writers’ residency in India.

Product Details ISBN: 9781668033562
ISBN-10: 1668033569
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: June 18th, 2024
Pages: 368
Language: English
"Put aside what you know about the 'Battle of Seattle' and pick up this exciting, myth-busting account. Essential for activists and organizers."
—Malcolm Harris, author of Palo Alto: A History of California, Capitalism, and the World