Frances Moore Lappé

Frances Moore Lappé

Frances Moore Lappé is the author of nineteen books, beginning with the acclaimed Diet for a Small Planet. Most recently she is the co-author, with Adam Eichen, of the new book, Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want. Among her numerous previous books are EcoMind: Changing the Way We Think to Create the World We Want (Nation Books).  She is co-founder of the Cambridge-based Small Planet Institute. Follow her on Twitter: @fmlappe

 

Articles by this author

A crowd gathers in Leipzig, Germany to commemorate the 70,000 people who courageously joined together in 1989 to peacefully demand freedom and democracy, a catalyst for the fall of the Berlin Wall. (Image: LTM/PUNCTUM) Views
Tuesday, December 11, 2018
Courage Is Contagious
No matter how many times we hear of one person’s act of conscience igniting sparks that light up the sky, too many of us hold tight to the notion that our own acts don’t mean much. Aren’t we the proverbial drops in the bucket, nice but never spectacular? Or, as it dawned on my daughter Anna and me...
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Lady Liberty getting arrested. "Being 'good'—kind and honest with those we touch directly—is admirable and desirable, but we need more," writes the author. "It's time to elevate another virtue: courage." (Democracy Spring - April 2016) Views
Monday, December 03, 2018
The Opposite of Evil Is No Longer Goodness
My headline is provocative, so let me quickly explain, starting with a huge claim about what’s unique about our world in this moment. Then I ask, What, right now, is most required of our species? Our era has been dubbed the Anthropocene because for the first time we humans are making our mark on...
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Fear can be a seedling for change.  Green Belt Movement tree nursery in Tumutumu Hills, Kenya. (Photograph by Ariel Poster) Views
Monday, November 19, 2018
What Is Courage?
Tough, brave, fearless. Don’t these words capture what courage means? Maybe not. For me, courage is simply doing what I thought I could not do. It’s acting for what I care about most, not because I’m fearless but despite my fear…fear that my action isn’t enough, that I’ll be alone, or that it’s all...
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Monday, October 22, 2018
Are Humans Actually Capable of Democracy?
Elsewhere I’ve made the case that democracy isn’t a choice. It’s our only pathway forward, but my claim can provoke some pretty charged challenges. I can hear the fears of the discouraged asking, “Is democracy even possible? Do we humans actually come equipped for it?” With democratic norms of...
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Thursday, October 18, 2018
What Is Democracy, Anyway? Let’s Talk
With our democracy in free fall, many are terrified, but I’m convinced that there is one thing with the power to turn the tide. And what is that? At the risk of sounding corny, or even ridiculous, I believe the one force with the power we need now is “falling in love with democracy.” I know love...
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Frances Moore Lappé marching in Democracy Spring from Philadelphia to the Capital steps. April 2016. Views
Thursday, October 11, 2018
Why We Can’t Give Up on Democracy
Trust in democracy is tumbling. In 1995, one in fifteen Americans said they’d approve of military rule. By 2014, the share had swollen to one in six. Note this frightening crash of confidence preceded the compromised 2016 election and a president who seems particularly fond of autocrats. Whoa. It...
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Volunteers delivering more than 85,000 signatures on a 2015 ballot initiative to strengthen Clean Elections in Maine. State House, Augusta ME. Views
Thursday, September 27, 2018
Hope’s 3 Essentials, and All Are Present
In earlier reflections on hope, I’ve declared that hope isn’t an assessment, it’s a stance toward life. Now I want to convince you that in this stance I’m on really solid ground. I start with an observation about our species. We humans have been around long enough to know one thing for sure about...
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Let us drop any thought that hope is a weakling. (Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images) Views
Monday, September 17, 2018
Amid Our Nation’s Mounting Democracy Crisis, Hope Is Power
Yeah, I know. “Hope” gets shoved into a corner called “nice” where weaklings huddle who can’t face hard realities. In fact, hope and power don’t often show up in the same sentence. Truth is, though, hope is a tap root of power. First, note that the word power derives from the Latin, posse, “to be...
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 I don’t have to be an optimist, and surely I’m not a pessimist. Rather, I’m a possibilist. (Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images) Views
Monday, September 10, 2018
What is Hope?
I’ve been called a hope fiend, and I cop to it. More than ever, hope isn’t just a “nice” feeling we’re lucky to experience from time to time. No, hope has become a requirement, as despair is our worst enemy. So, let me share a few things this fiend has learned about hope. First, it’s work. Yes, I...
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"Democracy can’t be sliced up into parts because human beings cannot be—that is, we cannot trust that we have a real voice at the polls while feeling voiceless in our economic lives."(Photo by Sam Morris/Getty Images) Views
Thursday, July 12, 2018
What’s the Biggest Threat to American Democracy?
We sure hear a lot today about external threats to our democracy, whether it’s Russia’s election “meddling” or North Korea’s nuclear expansion. But a home-bred threat might run deeper still. More than a third of Americans polled by the finance company LendEdu say they’d forfeit the right to vote in...
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