Minds of the Movement

An ICNC blog on the people and power of civil resistance

Ideas & Trends

Articles

What Soldiers and Police Should Do at a Protest (Series Part II)

What you do when on duty at a protest can influence others around you. By being calm and nonthreatening, you can ease tension. If you talk with protesters and laugh at their humorous stunts, you can set an example for other troops. Simply making light-hearted comments to your colleagues like, “Wait a second, I think I see my dentist in the crowd, don’t shoot” can make them think twice about engaging in potentially brutal behavior against peaceful protesters. […]

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Ideas & Trends

What Soldiers and Police Need to Know About Protests (Series Part I)

You’re a soldier or police officer who’s been asked to control and possibly shut down a public protest. You’ve been told the protesters are threatening public safety and national security. However, when you encounter them, things are not so clear. There are hundreds or thousands of people and they are not being violent. They say they are standing up for your country’s values. […]

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Ideas & Trends

What Can We Learn from Agent Provocateurs?

Over the past ten years, a large amount of social movement research has shown that peoples’ movements are more likely to succeed when they have unity among supporters, widespread participation, strategic planning, and nonviolent discipline. It is not surprising, therefore, that agent provocateurs both instigate and encourage real activists to behave in ways that undermine these four keys to movement success. Our challenge is to learn not to take the bait. Why would any of us want to act like agent provocateurs who are trying to harm our movements? […]

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Ideas & Trends

The Impact of Civil Resistance is Declining. What to Do?

The new data are depressing, with mass nonviolent resistance success rates dropping from 52 percent to 34 percent. At the same time however, violent resistance success rates dropped to their lowest point in the past century, at 8 percent. In her Journal of Democracy article a year ago, Chenoweth asks why, and what next? I want to ask, additionally, what to do? To answer this question, I propose to first take a step back and put the evolution of asymmetrical political conflict into perspective, considering developments in both ideology and in practice. This will help us as activists better harness our collective power in the new global context—the focus of my follow-up post. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Nigeria: How Agents Provocateurs Triggered Government Repression during the #EndSARS Movement

On October 3, 2020, a young man was said to have been shot in front of a hotel in Ughelli, Delta State, Nigeria by a police officer working with the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a division of the Nigerian Police Force. The incident served as a watershed event for popularizing the Twitter campaign #EndSARS, which had begun in 2017. […]

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Ideas & Trends

ความเสียหายต่อทรัพย์สิน ความรุนแรง ปฏิบัติการไร้ความรุนแรง และยุทธศาสตร์

ปัจจุบันเราอยู่ในช่วงเวลาของการเคลื่อนไหวที่มีพลังอย่างมาก และกำลังสร้างแรงกดดันต่อพวกเราทุกคน ไม่ว่าจะเป็นกลุ่มที่เรียกร้องความยุติธรรมและขอให้ตำรวจหยุดเข่นฆ่าคนผิวสีที่ไร้อาวุธต่อสู้ กลุ่มที่เดือดร้อนอย่างมหาศาลจากการแพร่ระบาดของโควิด 19  กลุ่มธุรกิจขนาดเล็กที่ถูกทำลายและปล้นสดมภ์ และกลุ่มที่เพียงหวาดกลัวแม้แต่จะออกไปไหนมาไหนในช่วงเวลานี้

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Ideas & Trends

Unraveling and Reporting Nonviolent Struggles for Rights, Freedom and Justice

Beyond raising public awareness of long-lived racial injustices, the 2020 Black Lives Matter demonstrations had another salutary effect: They created an opportunity for journalists to dive deeper into social justice issues and grassroots movements. The story was simply too big to ignore and would not go away, requiring journalists to look for new angles and details to keep their reporting fresh and relevant. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Dilemma Actions to Amplify the Power of Nonviolent Campaigns

In the spring of 2013, Turkish police made a public announcement at a metro station in Ankara warning passengers to “act in accordance with moral rules” after having spotted a couple engaging in a public display of affection. The admonishment backfired, and the next day, dozens of couples staged a “kissing protest” at the metro station. The incident went viral on social media, and a flood of photos and videos of couples kissing further flustered city police. […]

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Ideas & Trends

Los Movimientos Latinoamericanos Comprometidos con la Disciplina Noviolenta, Desplazándose a Canales Institucionales

La pandemia de este año no ha impedido a la gente en América Latina agruparse y empujar por sus agendas de derechos, justicia y democracia. En algunos casos, el mal manejo o la inacción con relación al COVID-19 incluso provocó demostraciones masivas, como fue el caso de Brasil. Pero esta no es la única tendencia en términos de resistencia civil que se puede identificar en la región este año. Aunque la violencia permanece como el instrument a elegir por muchos grupos no estatales, por amplio margen, el estereotipo del guerrillero con un fusil como símbolo del luchador por la libertad, el cual ha plagado la conciencia colectiva de Latinoamérica por décadas,[…]

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Ideas & Trends

Movement Magic? How Movements Mobilize Material Resources

While movements initially have few resources, and nearly no cash, many thrive and often succeed in achieving their goals. How do they mobilize resources to achieve their objectives? What sort of strategies do they use to generate material resources needed in their campaigns? To answer these questions, we studied three movements from northwest Mexico. In all three cases, we found that the key to mobilizing material resources was that movement leaders focused on communicating powerful messages and building public trust, which encouraged volunteers to join them. […]

 

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