Get Involved

Joining DSA means making a commitment to cooperation and solidarity. Not only do you help further democratic socialist ideas in the United States, you also become part of a community that shares your values.

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DSA Members participate in a variety of ways, depending on time, financial resources, and interests. All are important:

1) Participate in a community chapter.

Find a chapter near you!

DSA and Young Democratic Socialists chapters are critical to spreading the word about democratic socialism.

New to activism? That's okay! We hold regular webinars to help members learn organizing skills.

2) Participate in identity/issue-based teams.

DSA's national teams are autonomous groups organized around issues of identity or particular political interests. The commissions help link DSA to critical social movements and provide an important mechanism through which DSA members can mobilize around particular issues within the organization. Current caucuses and working groups are:

3) Participate in national work committees.

Members who are not near a DSA chapter can contribute professional skills such as graphic design, social media organizing, editing, writing, etc.

We always need help contacting members to welcome them and explain the various ways they can get involved, and this can be done with just a phone or computer.

Let us know if you are interested in contributing any specific skill(s)!

4) Attend online or national and regional events.

DSA has a biannual national convention, in a different region of the country each time. Our student section, Young Democratic Socialists, holds an outreach conference in the winter and a leadership retreat in the summer. The national office organizes occasional joint events at the regional or local level, and we hold regular seminars via webinar.

Learn about upcoming events on our calendar.

5) Recruit new members!

Many people share our values, but don't know there is a name for the ideas. Others already consider themselves democratic socialists or anti-capitalist, but haven't heard of DSA. You can play a critical role by visibly representing DSA and talking to friends, family, neighbors, coalition partners and others. If you share a flyer, blog post, copy of Democratic Left or other DSA literature, they may thank you for letting them know about DSA. Downloadable flyers and web versions can be found in our resources section and articles from our three blogs on the DSA homepage. You can even get a personalized link to get "credit" for recruiting your friends to connect with DSA!

You can also forward DSA emails, which you can sign up for on our homepage. Of course, you can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter, and help spread the word by liking, sharing, commenting on, retweeting, and favoriting posts!

6) Pay Dues and/or make additional financial contributions.

DSA is entirely member funded. This means we are accountable to members, but that sometimes we must raise additional funds for special projects. In our highly capitalistic country, we appreciate every dollar from memberships, special fundraising, or bequests. We especially appreciate members who build a solid foundation for DSA by making a regular monthly contribution.

Film Discussion: The Price We Pay

January 30, 2017
· 46 rsvps
The Price We Pay blows the lid off the dirty world of corporate malfeasance — the dark history and dire present-day reality of big-business tax avoidance, tax havens - and what we need to do to stop this.  DSA member Bill Barclay, who has a cameo role in the film, will facilitate the discussion. Watch the film prior to the discussion.

Full film available on Vimeo.

How to Plug in New Members

February 01, 2017
· 15 rsvps

Is your DSA chapter growing quickly and you're trying desperately to find ways to plug new members into your chapter's work? Never fear! On this conference call an experienced DSA organizer will go over the basics of new member outreach and developing a plan for plugging new members into your chapter's work. Most of the call will be devoted to troubleshooting specific issues you're facing, so please brainstorm some issues beforehand that you want to bring up on the call.  8 PM ET; 7 PM CT; 7 PM MT; 7 PM PT.

Film Discussion: Salt of the Earth

February 05, 2017
· 10 rsvps

Join DSA members Shelby Murphy and Deborah Rosenfelt in discussing Salt of the Earth, a captivating film made in 1954 by blacklisted writers and actors about a strike at a New Mexico zinc mine. Well before the resurgence of feminism in the 1960s, these filmmakers were exploring gender inequality and solidarity. Available on Netflix.

Shelby Murphy is a Latina from Texas and former Young Democratic Socialists co-chair. Professor Emerita of Women’s Studies at the University of Maryland, Deborah Rosenfelt researched the making of the film and its aftermath for the reissued screenplay. Here is her blogpost about the film.

 

Film Discussion: Documentaries of People's History in Texas

April 02, 2017
· 4 rsvps

Join DSA members Glenn Scott and Richard Croxdale to discuss videos produced by People’s History in Texas (PHIT), a project that brings to life the stories of ordinary people in significant socio-political movements in Texas. They will discuss The Rag, their newest documentary, which tells the story of an influential underground paper based in Austin, Texas, from 1966-77. Click here to view Part I (the early years as an all-volunteer paper covering the student, anti-Vietnam and Civil Rights movements), Part II (the impact of Women’s Liberation on the paper) and Part III (building community: covering local politics, nukes, co-ops, feminist institutions). But also check out the video on the Stand-Ins about a group of university students who led a movement to desegregate Austin’s movie theaters in 1961.

Film Discussion: Rosa [Luxemburg]

May 31, 2017
· 9 rsvps

Join DSA member Jason Schulman to discuss the film Rosa, directed by feminist filmmaker Margarethe von Trotta. View it here at no cost before the discussion. Marxist theorist and economist Rosa Luxemburg (1871-1919) played a key role in German socialist politics. Jason edited Rosa Luxemburg: Her Life and Legacy and has a chapter in Rosa Remix.

Film Discussion: The Free State of Jones

June 11, 2017
· 4 rsvps

Join Victoria Bynum, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History, Texas State University, San Marcos, to discuss The Free State of Jones. STX Entertainment bought the film rights to Bynum's book of the same title. She also served as a consultant and appears in a cameo scene. What was the Free State of Jones? During the Civil War, an armed band of deserters led by Newt Knight, a non-slaveholding white farmer, took to the swamps of southeastern Mississippi and battled against the Confederacy in an uprising popularly known as “The Free State of Jones.” Joining Newt in this rebellion was Rachel, a slave. From their relationship, there developed a controversial mixed-race community that endured long after the Civil War had ended. View the film here for $6 before the discussion.