Books for changing the world
Even the River Starts Small
A Collection of Stories from the Movement to Stop Line 3

Even the River Starts Small is a collection of stories from the movement to stop construction of the Line 3 pipeline through northern Minnesota.

The collection features anonymous writing, art, and photos spanning nearly a decade, and includes reflections on many of the diverse experiences that made up this grassroots resistance. There are hundreds of individual pieces of writing and visual art in the collection published in full color.

Line 3 is a tar sands oil pipeline that threatens communities, land, and water along its route, as well as the future of our climate. In 2021, despite fierce resistance, Enbridge completed construction of Line 3. Anishinaabe water protectors led the fight, asserting their sovereignty to oppose construction of this extractive project through their lands. For the better part of a decade thousands of people in Minnesota and around turtle island joined together to try and stop construction with a wide range of tactics.

After construction of the pipeline was complete, a group of young volunteer organizers from the movement set out to gather stories from the resistance to create a book that could be given to the movement as a gift. That team originally published Even the River Starts Small, the result of that project, in a limited distribution and gave away copies for free to people who were involved in resisting construction of Line 3. The book is now available for all through Haymarket Books.   

  • “This collection sets the bar high for what collaborative frontline literature can be.”
    —Mark Tilsen, Oglala Lakota Poet Educator and author of It Ain't Over Until We're Smoking Cigars On The Drill Pad

    "A stunning assemblage of voices and visions, 
    Even the River Starts Small perfectly mirrors the sacred beauty of this self-organized struggle against resource extraction: it takes an ecosystem to defend life. This volume, overflowing with the art of remembrance and resistance, makes crystal clear—tenderly, lovingly, as a gift—that it takes innumerable “molecules” to make up the waters of other possible worlds."
    —Cindy Barukh Milstein, author of Try Anarchism for Life

    “If Earth could write a book, this would be its Magnum Opus.”
    —Debra Magpie Earling

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