Activist New York


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Explore the drama of social activism in New York City from the 17th century right up to the present.

In a town renowned for its in-your-face persona, citizens have banded together on issues as diverse as civil rights, wages, sexual orientation, and religious freedom. Using artifacts, photographs, audio and visual presentations, as well as interactive components that seek to tell the story of activism in the five boroughs past and present, Activist New York presents the passions and conflicts that underlie the city's history of agitation.

Photo by Caleb-Michael Files

Activist New York online!

Continue the Activist New York experience online with additional original content and materials for teacherstest your knowledge of activism in New York, and help us tell the story of today’s activists.


Watch Dante's story

Meet Dante, from Million Hoodies organisation.

Watch Marian's story

Marian Thom is a union activist and retired bilingual paraprofessional featured in the exhibition.

Watch Linda's story

Linda Sarsour is the Executive Director of the Arab American Association of New York.


Activist New York and its associated programs are made possible by the Puffin Foundation Ltd.

Activist New York is the inaugural exhibition in The Puffin Foundation Gallery, which is dedicated to the ways in which ordinary New Yorkers have exercised their power to shape the city's and the nation's future.

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