From the good folks at Internationalist Books and Community Center, some encouraging recognition for those who resist on the inside, including the inmates of the Durham County jail whose voices are amplified on this site:
“This year, we choose to honor the bravery and resilience of people engaged in struggle against some of the most crushing odds in our society – the violence and captivity of the state. This year, we honor the many bold organizers inside the prisons of North Carolina.”
Bob Sheldon founded Internationalist Books in 1981, and ran the shop for ten years, until his death in 1991. More than 20 years after his death, Bob’s memory endures through the friends, family and community that knew him, the work he did, and the project he began that has continued for decades to inspire political action in North Carolina and bring people together.
In a culture that degrades us and pushes us to see ourselves as isolated, our desires for revolutionary change as futile and limited by our own smallness, Bob’s example shows us that living a life of conviction creates something that can outlast our own times. Remembering Bob inspires us to understand how our acts of bravery and defiance and the spaces – like Internationalist Books – that we make and defend have a power that is bigger than each of us individually, a power to unmake the world we endure and to create the world we want. Bob said, in 1983, that “the world situation demands sweeping changes and we must do our part to meet that challenge. We support the unity and liberation of oppressed peoples worldwide, and are working toward the day when all oppression and inequality will be removed from the face of the earth.” We award the Bob Sheldon Award each year to recognize and celebrate individuals and groups whose work is done in this spirit.
This year, we choose to honor the bravery and resilience of people engaged in struggle against some of the most crushing odds in our society – the violence and captivity of the state. This year, we honor the many bold organizers inside the prisons of North Carolina.