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An empowering guide to understanding the strategies behind successful social movements.
Strategic nonviolent action has reasserted itself as a potent force in shaping public debate and forcing political change. Whether it is an explosive surge of protest calling for racial justice in the United States, a demand for democratic reform in Hong Kong or Mexico, a wave of uprisings against dictatorship in the Middle East, or a tent city on Wall Street that spreads throughout the country, when mass movements erupt onto our television screens, the media portrays them as being as spontaneous and unpredictable. In This is an Uprising, political analysts Mark and Paul Engler uncover the organization and well-planned strategies behind such outbursts of protest, examining core principles that have been used to spark and guide moments of transformative unrest. This is an Uprising traces the evolution of civil resistance, providing new insights into the contributions of early experimenters such as Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., groundbreaking theorists such as Gene Sharp and Frances Fox Piven, and contemporary practitioners who have toppled repressive regimes in countries such as South Africa, Serbia, and Egypt. Drawing from discussions with activists now working to defend human rights, challenge corporate corruption, and combat climate change, the Englers show how people with few resources and little influence in conventional politics can nevertheless engineer momentous upheavals. Although it continues to prove its importance in political life, the strategic use of nonviolent action is poorly understood. Nonviolence is usually studied as a philosophy or moral code, rather than as a method of political conflict, disruption, and escalation. This is an Uprising corrects this oversight. It argues that if we are always taken by surprise by dramatic outbreaks of revolt, and if we decline to incorporate them into our view of how societies progress, then we pass up the chance to fully grasp a critical phenomenon—and to harness its power to create lasting change.
A priceless resource for everyone ready to make a difference, environmental activist Aidan Ricketts offers a step-by-step handbook for citizens eager to start or get involved in grass-roots movements and beyond. Providing all essential practical tools, methods and strategies needed for a successful campaign and extensively discussing legal and ethical issues, this book empowers its readers to effectively promote their cause. Lots of ready-to-use documents and comprehensive information on digital activism and group strategy make this book an essential companion for any campaign. Including case studies from the US, UK, Canada and Australia, this is the ultimate guidebook to participatory democracy.
&"An extensive and powerful literature on religion, society, and politics in Latin America in recent years has begun with the assumption that most of the movements that surged in the struggle against military rule are dead, that most of the activists are scattered and burned out, and that the promise of civil society as a source of new values and a new kind of citizenship and political life was illusory. Many have assumed that the religiously inspired activism of that period left little lasting impact, but hardly anyone has actually looked at the activists themselves to see what remains, how they cope in a different, more open environment, and how they see and act on the present and future. Activist Faith addresses these issues with a wealth of empirical detail from two key cases and with a richly interdisciplinary argument that draws on theorizing about social movements. The authors strive to understand what sustains activism and movements in radically different circumstances from those in which they arose. Their analysis is enriched by systematic attention to the impact of gender and gender-related issues on activism and movements. In the process, they shed much needed light on the fate of the activists and social movements that rose to prominence throughout Latin America during the 1980s. This beautifully written book is a major achievement that gives us analytical tools for studying how movements and activists survive in the doldrums and when a cycle of protest peaks and societies move on.&"&—Daniel H. Levine, University of Michigan
Six months after the Selma to Montgomery marches and just weeks after the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a group from Martin Luther King Jr.'s staff arrived in Chicago, eager to apply his nonviolent approach to social change in a northern city. Once there, King's Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) joined the locally based Coordinating Council of Community Organizations (CCCO) to form the Chicago Freedom Movement. The open housing demonstrations they organized eventually resulted in a controversial agreement with Mayor Richard J. Daley and other city leaders, the fallout of which has historically led some to conclude that the movement was largely ineffective. In this important volume, an eminent team of scholars and activists offer an alternative assessment of the Chicago Freedom Movement's impact on race relations and social justice, both in the city and across the nation. Building upon recent works, the contributors reexamine the movement and illuminate its lasting contributions in order to challenge conventional perceptions that have underestimated its impressive legacy.
Strengthening trust, accountability, and participation in government are essential to serving the needs of citizens. This volume brings together concepts and ideas from around the world on how to achieve more responsive and accountable public administration within the framework of democratic governance. Public officials and administrators are provided with conceptual and policy tools to help them understand today's complex challenges, and to pursue ideas that are most likely to enhance service delivery from the citizen's perspective. The publication is one of the analytical products emerging from the Global Forum on Reinventing Government.
Breast Cancer: Society Shapes an Epidemic provides an innovative look at the social and political contexts of breast cancer and examines how this illness has become a social problem. This is not a book about breast cancer as a biological disease, its diagnosis and treatment, or the latest research to cure it. Rather, it looks at how economics, politics, gender, social class, and race-ethnicity have deeply influenced the science behind breast cancer research, spurred the growth of a breast cancer industry, generated media portrayals of women with the disease, and defined and influenced women’s experiences with breast cancer. The contributors address the social construction of breast cancer as an illness and as an area of scientific controversy, advocacy, and public policy. Chapters on the history of breast cancer, the health care system, the environment, and the marketing of breast cancer, among others, tease apart the complex social forces that have shaped our collective and individual responses to breast cancer.

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