Journal of Community Practice
Taylor & Francis Group
The practice of professional community organizing aims to create a more equitable, inclusive society. However, power-based community organizing in the Alinsky tradition has historically been criticized for being unwelcoming to women, especially those who are caregivers at home. To better understand the paradox of working for social justice within an occupational context where one is not fully welcome, this exploratory interview-based study used an Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis to explore how women organizers understand, experience, and navigate gendered features of new public management within power-based community organizations in Chicago. Our findings indicate that women community organizers experience significant tensions due to professional demands and a culture of overwork that is incompatible with caregiving responsibilities. Nonetheless, practices of building authentic relationships, engaging in trauma-informed practices, and taking time for rest and reflection–practices that are not always consistent with neoliberal pressures to “produce” – brought them hope and meaning. Though organizing can be plagued by a sense of urgency, slowing down can be a political act of inclusion.
Dungy, Mary L. and Krings, Amy. The Challenges of “Moving at the Speed of Trust”: How Women Navigate New Public Management Dynamics in Power-based Community Organizations. Journal of Community Practice, 31, : 24-43, 2023. Retrieved from Loyola eCommons, Social Work: School of Social Work Faculty Publications and Other Works, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10705422.2023.2175754
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