Books: Non-Fiction

101 Changemakers: Rebels and Radicals Who Changed US History

Book — Non-fiction. By Michele Bollinger and Dao Tran. 2012.
A collection of 101 brief and accessible profiles of rebels, radicals, and fighters for social justice.

Time Periods: All US History
Themes: African American, Asian American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Disability, Immigration, Labor, Language Arts, Latinx, LGBTQ, Media, Native American, Organizing, Pacific Islander, Racism & Racial Identity, Social Class, Women's History

The editors of 101 Changemakers hope that their brief profiles of rebels and radicals will “inspire more young changemakers to shape their own history.”

Too often, texts present “great individuals” in a way that leaves readers feeling small by comparison.  “I could never do that,” is the message students can easily take away. 101 Changemakers focuses on extraordinary individuals, but in the context of the broader movements and events that sparked and nurtured their activism.

The editors feature the famous — like John Brown, Mary Beth Tinker, Rosa Parks, and Cesar Chavez — along with the less celebrated — like Harry Hay Jr., Mary and Carrie Dann, and Constance McMillen. Along with 500 word profiles, written by teachers and activists across the country, each selection includes a timeline of the changemaker’s life, provocative questions, and suggestions for further research.

Sample page.

Sample page.

Written for middle school students, but great for high school students, too.


Michele Bollinger lives in Washington, D.C., where she teaches high school social studies.

Dao X. Tran is an editor based in the Bronx, New York. Dao is currently working on the Domestic Worker Oral History Project. When not reading for work and pleasure, she enjoys time with her daughter Quyen, a changemaker of a different sort.

ISBN: 9781608461561 |Haymarket Books