The essays that make up Broken and Shared were originally published bi-monthly over a forty year period in the newspaper of the Los Angeles Catholic Worker, The Catholic Agitator. Collected together for the first time in this book, these essays constitute Jeff Dietrich’s witness to poverty on Los Angeles’ Skid Row.
The vast scope of Jeff Dietrich’s essays introduces the reader to a world like no other. These essays combine the stories of poor women and men with a record of the author’s civil disobedience, with a chronicle of the city’s attitude of depraved indifference when it comes to the treatment of its poor, with a day-to-day history of the rapidly changing landscape that is downtown Los Angeles. The arguments and analyses in this book are predicated on singular and radical readings of the Biblical texts in counterpoint with a varied and rich array of philosophical, literary, and critical ideas.
Through the lens of Jeff Dietrich’s perspective and rooted in his life of self-imposed poverty, this book is both a prescription for change and an inspiration for how we might find ways to live more meaningful lives because we know the importance of caring for those who have nothing to offer but themselves
ISBN: 978-0-9839616-2-8; Format: 6” x 9”, paperback, 62 Illustrations, 450 pages; Price: $29.95
Praise for Broken and Shared:
“What you are doing is something beautiful for God.”
—Mother Teresa, Nobel Laureate and Humanitarian
“The world looks brighter for rarities like Jeff Dietrich.”
—Wole Soyinka, Nobel Laureate and President’s Marymount Professor in Residence, Loyola Marymount University
“Jeff’s life-giving text held me enchanted, page after page, hours on end. I was at the mercy of magister… a verbal magician, who is also, gift beyond price, a friend.”
—Daniel Berrigan, S.J., Activist and Poet
“Jeff writes with self-deprecating humor and extraordinary insight, confronting his fears, and confirming his faith.”
—Martin Sheen, Activist and Actor
“This is a one of a kind primer on the life of this courageous man, his community and the newspaper he forged.”
—Joanne Kennedy, Managing Editor, The Catholic Worker
“Each issue of the Agitator contains a new surprise of ways in which anger, ennobled by grace can be sweet.”
—Ivan Illich, Philosopher and Social Critic
“You and the LA Catholic Worker bring light in this dark time for justice and peace.”
—Rabbi Leonard L. Beerman, Founder of Leo Baeck Temple
“Jeff Dietrich’s work is both authentic and important.”
—Jacques Ellul, Philosopher and Theologian
About the Author: Jeff Dietrich was born in Newport News, Virginia. When he was nine years old his parents moved to Southern California where he was raised and educated. After college and in order to avoid the draft, he spent six months traveling in Europe and North Africa. For the last forty years, he has lived in community at the Los Angeles Catholic Worker in solidarity with the poor. Jeff Dietrich is an activist, whose numerous actions of civil disobedience have landed him in jail more than forty times; he is a cook and a kitchen worker, whose efforts have helped provide more than three million meals to the homeless on Los Angeles’ Skid Row; and he is a writer, whose eye-witness accounts of the suffering and deprivation of the poor are imbedded in his relentless and vehement exposure of the political and social system that helps to maintain their poverty.
Tsehai Publishers was established with the sincere desire to make a difference in the world through the written word. We hope to make a substantial difference by bringing current issues and missing historical links to the forefront of modern thought around the globe.