1 September 2022 • Faculty Dean Coauthors Article in Boston Review Ahead of Book Release


Professor of Political Science Jodi Dean is the coauthor of an article in Boston Review about Black communist women’s historic and enduring impact on labor movements. The article is an adapted excerpt from her forthcoming book, Organize, Fight, Win: Black Communist Women’s Political Writing.

Titled, “Before #Hotlaborsummer,” Professor of Political Science Jodi Dean’s recently published article in Boston Review surveys the writing and work of Black communist women in the 20th century who organized against capitalism and racism simultaneously to advance labor, gender and racial equity.

Dean’s coauthor and coeditor is Charisse Burden-Stelly, Associate Professor of African American Studies at Wayne State University.

The article is an adapted excerpt of Dean and Burden-Stelly’s forthcoming collection, Organize, Fight, Win: Black Communist Women’s Political Writing, which includes writings from the end of World War I through the 1950s, by organizers including Williana Burroughs, Ella Baker and Marvel Cooke, among others. The book will be released by Verso on Oct. 4.

“Black communist women have long served as a vital, albeit overlooked, source of hope and inspiration in challenging times,” Dean and Burden-Stelly write in Boston Review, telling the stories of women such as Louise Thompson Patterson, who wrote about the superexploitation of women in 1936, and Baker, who advocated for domestic workers to organize to build collective power.

In an early review, “Organize, Fight, Win” was celebrated by the Library Journal. “This book returns the voices of Black women Communists to their rightful place in histories of labor, race, and gender in the 20th century. Libraries serving historians or general readers interested in Black women’s history and activism need to add this to their shelves,” critic Bart Everts writes.

Pre-order a copy of “Organize, Fight, Win” here.

Dean is the author or editor of 13 books, including Comrade: An Essay on Political Belonging (Verso, 2019) as well as Blog Theory, The Communist Horizon, Democracy and Other Neoliberal Fantasies and Crowds and Party, among others. She teaches courses in political, feminist and media theory.