Minnesota Historical Society

The Citizen Solution: How You Can Make a Difference

$ 15.95


A hands-on guide to effecting change in America by taking action in your community.

Nationally known community organizer and activist Harry C. Boyte incites readers to join today’s “citizen movement,” offering practical tools for how we can change the face of America by focusing on issues close to home.

Targeting useful techniques for individuals to raise public consciousness and effectively motivate community-based groups, Boyte grounds his arguments in the country’s tradition of “populism,” demonstrating how mobilized citizens can be far more powerful than our frequently paralyzed politicians. He offers practical tips on identifying potential citizen leaders and working through cultural differences without sacrificing identities.

Each point is illustrated by inspiring real-life examples of Minnesotans who have prompted change: An immigrant community that created a cultural wellness center. An organization of multiracial, multifaith congregations that is tackling tough social problems. A cluster of suburban neighborhoods that came together to take back Sundays from overzealous youth-sports organizations. For readers doubting their ability to make a significant difference in our world, this how-to book will show the way.


  • By: Harry C. Boyte
  • Format: paper, 224 pages, 6 x 9
  • Publisher: MNHS Press
  • Product ##: 978-0873516105


Praise for The Citizen Solution

"The Citizen Solution should be on every activist's book shelf--consider it the practical progressive's Bible for making things happen." Daily Kos

The Citizen Solution brings Minnesota's rich civic traditions to life. In this stirring book, Boyte describes how people of diverse backgrounds are once again coming together to address the challenges we face.”
Walter Mondale, former vice president of the United States


“In a time of great political division, The Citizen Solution offers individuals a path to make change on the issues they care about. Only through civic engagement can we build the power to improve our communities.”
David Wellstone, co-founder of Wellstone Action!


The Citizen Solution is a great resource for thoughtful people. Harry Boyte provides hope, principles, and examples to encourage families, peer groups, and neighborhoods to solve problems for the common good.”
Al Quie, former governor of Minnesota


“Boyte's practical and inspirational book is essential reading for anyone concerned with the future of American democracy.”
Cecilia Marie Orphan, National Coordinator, American Democracy Project






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