The Legacy and Current Growth of Black Cooperatives: An Interview with Jessica Gordon Nembhard

Photo of Mandela Foods Cooperative, courtesy of Jessica Gordon Nembhard.

For National Co-op Month, we present a three-part series from an interview with Jessica Gordon Nembhard. Read the first piece, Black Cooperative Economics During Enslavement, here and the second piece, on how the cooperatives were critical partners to struggles throughout African-American history, here.

When I first became interested in cooperative economics, everybody, Black and white, told me that Black people  just don’t engage in cooperative economics. But that didn’t seem right to me. So I started studying it, talking to people about it, and participating in the US co-op movement. I found there were hardly any Blacks involved, except when they were in agricultural cooperatives in the South. None of the mainstream co-op literature talked about Black co-ops, and yet I was sure that African-Americans must have been involved.

 

Continue reading

East Bay Premiere of Resistencia: The Fight for the Aguan Valley

Other Worlds, Friends of the Earth and Food First are co-sponsoring a film screening of Resistencia: The Fight for the Aguan Valley. Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz will introduce the program and Filmmaker Jesse Freeston will lead the post-film discussion.

Continue reading

The Black Co-Op Movement: The Silent Partner in Critical Moments of African-American History: An Interview with Jessica Gordon Nembhard

For National Co-op Month, we present a three-part series from an interview with Jessica Gordon Nembhard who is Professor of Community Justice & Social Economic Development at John Jay College, CUNY; and an Affiliate Scholar at the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives at the University of Saskatchewan in Canada. She serves on the following boards: Grassroots Economic Organizing, the Association of Cooperative Educators, and the US Solidarity Economy Network; and is a founding member of the Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy, and the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives. Gordon Nembhard’s acclaimed new book is Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice. This is the first of a three-part interview to run during October, which is Co-op Month. See the first piece, Black Cooperative Economics During Enslavement, here.

Continue reading

The Black Co-Op Movement: The Silent Partner in Critical Moments of African-American History: An Interview with Jessica Gordon Nembhard

 

For National Co-op Month, we present a three-part series from an interview with Jessica Gordon Nembhard who is Professor of Community Justice & Social Economic Development at John Jay College, CUNY; and an Affiliate Scholar at the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives at the University of Saskatchewan in Canada. She serves on the following boards: Grassroots Economic Organizing, the Association of Cooperative Educators, and the US Solidarity Economy Network; and is a founding member of the Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy, and the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives. Gordon Nembhard’s acclaimed new book is Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice. This is the first of a three-part interview to run during October, which is Co-op Month. See the first piece, Black Cooperative Economics During Enslavement, here.

Continue reading