Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals is a 1971 book by community activist and writer Saul D. Alinsky about how to successfully run a movement for change. The last book written by Alinsky, it was published shortly before his death in 1972. His goal was to create a guide for future community organizers, to use in uniting low-income communities, or “Have-Nots”, in order for them to gain social, political, legal, and economic power. Within it, Alinsky compiled the lessons he had learned throughout his experiences of community organizing from 1939–1971 and targeted these lessons at the current, new generation of radicals.
Divided into ten chapters, Rules for Radicals provides 10 lessons on how a community organizer can accomplish the goal of successfully uniting people into an active grassroots organization with the power to effect change on a variety of issues. Though targeted at community organization, these chapters also touch on other issues that range from ethics, education, communication, and symbol construction and political philosophy.