The Best Books on Winning Socialism in Our Lifetime

danny katch
5 min readMar 4, 2022

Shepherd Books asked me to recommend 5 books about socialism today. With apologies to many amazing authors I could have listed, here they are.

Who am I?

I’ve been a socialist for my entire adult life and a wise-ass for even longer. As a writer I’ve found a way to combine these two passions, using humor to introduce complex economic and political ideas to a new audience, as well as poke fun at politicians, CEOs, and even myself and my fellow activists. Not all of the books on this list use humor the way I do, but they have all helped me keep my sunny disposition by giving me inspiration that the socialist cause is more dynamic and multifaceted than ever.

I wrote…

Socialism….Seriously: A Brief Guide to Human Liberation

What is my book about?

Socialism…Seriously brings together the two great Marxist traditions of Karl and Groucho to provide an entertaining and insightful introduction to what the socialist tradition has to say about democracy, economics, and the potential of human beings to be something more than being bomb-dropping, planet-destroying racist fools.

Danny Katch uses humor and imagination to take an unflinching look at the rising threats posed by climate change, billionaire oligarchs, and the far right — and makes a compelling case that a socialist world is both necessary and possible. This book is for people who want to take a deeper look at what socialism is… but maybe not that deep.

The Books I Picked & Why

We Do This ’Til We Free Us: Abolitionist Organizing and Transforming Justice

By Mariame Kaba

Why this book

The Black Lives Matter protests of 2020 introduced many people to the idea of abolishing police and prisons. Mariame Kaba might be the most thoughtful abolitionist organizer. This book of essays is both daring and humble, forward-thinking, and rooted in the everyday lives of young Black and Brown people.

Using simple language to convey profound ideas, Kaba asks if the massive expenditures of money and violence in our criminal justice system actually bring satisfaction and healing to those who are victims of crime. She insists that abolition is…