Viral Justice: How We Grow the World We Want

From the author of Race After Technology, an inspiring vision of how we can build a more just world—one small change at a time

“A true gift to our movements for justice.”—Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow


Oct 11, 2022
6.13 x 9.25 in.
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Book Trailer

Long before the pandemic, Ruha Benjamin was doing groundbreaking research on race, technology, and justice, focusing on big, structural changes. But the twin plagues of COVID-19 and anti-Black police violence inspired her to rethink the importance of small, individual actions. Part memoir, part manifesto, Viral Justice is a sweeping and deeply personal exploration of how we can transform society through the choices we make every day.

Vividly recounting her personal experiences and those of her family, Benjamin shows how seemingly minor decisions and habits could spread virally and have exponentially positive effects. She recounts her father’s premature death, illuminating the devastating impact of the chronic stress of racism, but she also introduces us to community organizers who are fostering mutual aid and collective healing. Through her brother’s experience with the criminal justice system, we see the trauma caused by policing practices and mass imprisonment, but we also witness family members finding strength as they come together to demand justice for their loved ones. And while her own challenges as a young mother reveal the vast inequities of our healthcare system, Benjamin also describes how the support of doulas and midwives can keep Black mothers and babies alive and well.

Born of a stubborn hopefulness, Viral Justice offers a passionate, inspiring, and practical vision of how small changes can add up to large ones, transforming our relationships and communities and helping us build a more just and joyful world.

Book Club Pick: Viral Justice

What is viral justice? An interview with Ruha Benjamin

Listen in: Viral Justice

Office hours with Ruha Benjamin

Awards and Recognition

  • Winner of the Stowe Prize, Harriet Beecher Stowe Center
  • Longlisted for the Porchlight Business Book Awards, Personal Development & Human Behavior Category
  • A Seminary Co-Op Notable Book of the Year
  • A NationSwell Book of the Year
  • Finalist for the C. Wright Mills Award, Society for the Study of Social Problems
  • Nominated for the getAbstract International Book Award
  • Shortlisted for the getAbstract International Book Award 2023, Business Impact Category