Nonviolent conflict is a way for people to fight for rights, freedom, justice, self-determination, and accountable government, through the use of civil resistance - including tactics such as strikes, boycotts, protests, and civil disobedience. Learn more...
Matt Mulberry, openDemocracy, October 13, 2014
Civil resistance has been one means by which many Maldivians have waged a struggle to defend basic political, civic and human rights. In 2008 a mass movement culminating in free and fair elections successfully ended the authoritarian presidency of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, who had been South Asia’s longest standing dictator. But this new period of democratic leadership was short-lived. In 2012 democratically elected president Mohamed Nasheed was ousted in a coup so swift and bloodless that the international community could scarcely figure out what had happened. Now with journalists under threat, blogs and even poetry being censored, and Islamist groups successfully recruiting young people to fight abroad, the international community faces the question of whether to ignore another democracy at risk.
Kaja Baum, Foreign Policy in Focus, October 13, 2014
Beijing’s initial willingness to allow negotiations came in contrast to the hard line propagated in state media outlets, painting Occupy Central as a hostile movement. For China, the outcome of the protests will have consequences that reverberate beyond the borders of Hong Kong. As Vox’s Max Fisher observes, the Chinese government views Occupy Central as “a potentially existential threat to the entire Chinese system, which is perceived as so weak and embattled that leaders believe even peaceful protests like this could bring everything crashing down.” Contrary to its reputation in much of the world as a rising power and economic powerhouse, China is facing numerous internal challenges that have greatly diminished its own self confidence.
Tessa Love, IPS News, October 14, 2014
A year after the Gezi Park uprising – a protest that began as an act to save trees – exploded into anti-government protests around the country, the face of environmental activism in Turkey has changed. The demonstrations were ignited by concerns of rampant urban development, and later became an issue of human rights and democratisation. Within 20 minutes of the arrival of bulldozers in Gezi Park in May 2013, throngs of people filled the park to block the construction, and they stayed for 20 days before being forced out by police. One year later, the movement is still alive and grass roots organisations have joined forces to make changes where they can.
Ellen Barry, NY Times, October 10, 2014
Mr. Kailash Satyarthi is not an international celebrity like 17-year-old Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan, with whom he is sharing the Nobel Peace Prize. Instead, he has labored for three decades to shave away at child slavery in India, using undercover operatives and camera crews to find the airless workrooms and mine shafts where children were being kept. Mr. Satyarthi’s organization, called Save the Children Mission, is credited with freeing some 70,000 children. He was so deeply impressed with Gandhi’s teachings that, as a teenager, he invited a group of high-caste local bigwigs to a meal prepared by low-caste “untouchables”; the invited guests boycotted the event and then shunned his family. Deeply upset, the boy dropped his Brahmin family name in favor of Satyarthi, which means “seeker of truth.”.
Michael Caster, openDemocracy, October 10, 2014
By claiming that inequality does not exist, delegitimizing Uyghur claims, and circumscribing available nonviolent channels for Uyghurs to express grievances, Communist Party policy in Xinjiang continues to engender unrest. The unrest is labeled as the influence of foreign forces because the government refuses to acknowledge the existence of legitimate domestic grievances. Virtually all Uyghur participation in nonviolent resistance may be labeled as inciting separatism and treated with severe repression. The increase in violent resistance, the ongoing and perhaps escalating crackdown on Uyghur rights advocates, and zero-tolerance for all Uyghur dissent prompts us to wonder why we haven’t seen more nonviolent resistance.
WEBINAR: Explaining the “Umbrella Revolution” for Political Rights in Hong Kong
While Hong Kong has only a partial democracy, people are free to protest. While the police sometimes make arbitrary arrests, the independent judiciary inherited from the colonial era routinely releases activists. This constitutional structure presents a very open political space unseen in the rest of China and yet makes it difficult for activists to mobilize the largely contented population. Against this backdrop, the unprecedented use of riot police and the firing of tear gas seemed to have galvanized popular support for the protesters campaigning for genuine democracy, and it has increased sympathy for their nonviolent actions. In this webinar, professors Michael Davis and Victoria Hui discuss the unfolding “Umbrella Revolution” occurring in Hong Kong.
ICNC/Rutgers-Newark Online Course on Civil Resistance
Graduate credits available upon request
October 14 - November 18, 2014
ICNC and the Rutgers University Graduate School-Newark are accepting applications for the online course, "Civil Resistance and the Dynamics of Nonviolent Conflict." This online course is designed to provide an in-depth and multi-disciplinary perspective on civilian-based movements and campaigns that defend and obtain basic rights and justice around the world with the use of nonviolent tactics and strategies. We will look at issues of political power, effectiveness of nonviolent resistance, misconceptions about nonviolent conflict, role of skills in civil resistance, strategies and tactics and tactical sequencing, phenomenon of backfire, and dilemma actions.
“Pressing Your Case: Nonviolent Movements and the Media”
From Kiev to Cairo, from Selma to Soweto, the media affect the outcome of any civilian -based struggle. This ICNC-supported educational video series explores how nonviolent campaigns and movements can generate interest by the mainstream media. Through interviews with Nobel Peace Prize laureates Aung San Suu Kyi and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, as well as other resistance leaders and scholars from around the world, “Pressing Your Case” offers original and useful expertise for organizers and activists.
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