Rules for Radicals

  • by Saul D. Alinsky
  • Narrated by Scott Lange
  • 7 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

First published in 1971, Rules for Radicals is Saul Alinsky's impassioned counsel to young radicals on how to effect constructive social change and know "the difference between being a realistic radical and being a rhetorical one." Written in the midst of radical political developments whose direction Alinsky was one of the first to question, this volume exhibits his style at its best. Like Thomas Paine before him, Alinsky was able to combine, both in his person and his writing, the intensity of political engagement with an absolute insistence on rational political discourse and adherence to the American democratic tradition.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Finding The New Within The Old...

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Being an Tea Party, independent conservative libertarian that has listened to conservative talk radio for 30 years, I have always heard about this book being satanic to be handled with a chem suit and tossed into a landfill, and first to go when needing to burn something for heat, however Alinsky was brilliant and truly ahead of his time. I have read just about every management, strategy and leadership book there is, and this one was the best. I saw a lot of his videos thinking the guy was complete garbage but after reading the book you can see it was an act and he was playing his part. I don't agree with everything he said about the poor and have not's because life is about breaking through the noise and becoming someone and making something of yourself, life is a challenge, its not supposed to be easy to win, however his message was well defined and acute to the times he lived and regardless of anything, he did find his purpose in life and executed it flawlessly.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Rules for Radicals?

I found the book completely enjoyable, but what I did find interesting was that he wrote this book as the counter for The Prince by, Niccolò Machiavelli. Saying that the Prince was made for those that have to keep what they have and his book Rules for Radicals was written to the have not's to take from those that had. I also liked how he stated as long as your friends don't turn their brutal tactics on you they are considered angelic and heavenly, however the moment they turn those same tactics on you they are considered vile, evil and nukeable. I also liked the fact he was viciously hard on himself.

Which character – as performed by Scott Lange – was your favorite?

Scott Lange was an excellent reader, the first thing I did was look for other books he had narrated. I hope he does many more books.

If you could give Rules for Radicals a new subtitle, what would it be?

Radicals is an aged name and it doesn't mean what it used to. But the title should be, "Mastering Mass Persuasion, The Non-Government Propaganda Way."

Any additional comments?

This book is a classic and should be treated as such. This book is not evil, its up there with Drucker, Deming and Durant! What a strategist, tactician, philosopher and executioner!

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- Adeo


I've read many books from the right and the from the left end of the political spectrum. Many authors who take aim at American capitalism fall short with an entrenched bias that weakens their critiques and inevitable solutions. No so with Mr. Alinksky. This is one of the first books that I have read that bore a chilling grasp of reality and an unapologetic commitment to attack thy neighbor. This man is not actually a documented socialist or communist...he's a pure strain of Anti-American capitalism that stands alone in its 'action' ideology. I found myself fearing his thinking as much as I did appreciating the cold logic he brought to bear on these pages. He doesn't seem to really want a peaceful society, but envisions a society that is constantly at war with itself from within. Make no mistake, the ideas of this book are dangerous because they are realistically cunning. He outlines his dismissal of ethics in social warfare and makes the age-old case for the ends justifying the means, step 1 for any evil enterprise. The most horrifying conclusion is who Saul Alinsky identifies as Public Enemy #1 in America. The Middle Class. Me, you, and 87% of Americans. Saul's call to arms is aimed solely at the Middle undermine that belief ridicule that way of mock and agitate the people of the Middle Class...and ultimately to convert a segment of the Middle Class into an ally against the rest of the Middle Class. Saul evens opens the book with a salute to the 'very first radical' whom he admired...Lucifer. Jeesh.
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- Doug

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-08-2015
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio