Category Archives: uprisings

Brave: Young Women’s Global Revolution Book Review

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International Journal for Intersectional Feminist Studies, Volume 4, Issue 1 & 2, September 2018, ISSN
2463-2945
Gayle Kimball. Brave: Young Women’s Global Revolution (in two volumes, Vol. 1: Global Themes & Vol. 2: Regional Activism). [Equality Press], 2017. With introduction, b/w photographs and notes. x, 373 pp & xiv, 643 pp.
Morgan Brynnan
Finally, we hear the authentic voices of girls and young women from around the globe, from the traditional to the radical. Encompassing interviews and fieldwork from 88 countries, sociologist Gayle Kimball brings together over a decade of original research on female youth. Such research is sorely lacking, as most other works of this kind are regional and/or discuss youth without including their voices. Kimball goes beyond standardized internet surveys of middle-class youth, with in-depth video interviews available on the companion blog, https://globalyouthbook.wordpress.com, of young women from the favelas of Brazil to the upper-class in Saudi Arabia. Some of the interviews and contacts went on for over a decade as the young women moved into adulthood, and Kimball traveled for much of the research.
A monumental piece of research and analysis from Feminist Standpoint Theory, Kimball includes and compares other notable surveys of youth and women’s issues in the two volumes. Don’t expect to hear only feminist voices—traditional young women speak clearly in these pages as well. A good history of feminism and what it means today to young women is part of the essential reading in Brave. Both volumes discuss the impact of neo-liberal policies, war, non-violent resistance, and upheavals.
Consumerism and media are addressed in depth, as well as organizing in the Internet Age. Discussion questions are included following each chapter and the endnotes are a rich source of further information.
While there is heavy coverage of the Arab Spring uprisings, the two works go far beyond the Middle East to report on women making change in other countries (Volume 2, Regional Activism, covers The West, Latin America, Africa, MENA, Russia, China, and India).
This work includes many references to important figures in various movements, related source materials, and films. It could be improved with the addition of an index, bibliography, and filmography for easier access and further research. A link to the core survey questions and most frequent answers is included.
23
International Journal for Intersectional Feminist Studies, Volume 4, Issue 1 & 2, September 2018, ISSN
2463-2945
Great reading for anyone interested in what girls and young women really think politically. Especially useful for courses in Women’s Studies, Youth Studies, Girl Studies, Political Science, and Global Studies, this is a record of the otherwise unnamed young women who have changed our century.
NOTE: This work is part of a series of books based on the longitudinal international survey work of Dr. Kimball. Other books in the series include Ageism in Youth Studies: Generation Maligned (Cambridge Scholars, 2017); How Global Youth Values Will Transform Our Future (Cambridge Scholars, 2018); Resist! Goals and Tactics for Changemakers (forthcoming, 2018); and Democracy Uprisings Led by Global Youth (forthcoming).
Dr. Kimball welcomes you to critique upcoming drafts. Contact the author at GKimball@csuchico.edu
Morgan Brynnan is a mother, librarian, and unabashed feminist living in the United States. With activist roots going back to the Women’s Encampment for a Future of Peace and Justice at The Seneca Army Depot and ACT-UP, she writes from a life lived fully. Currently, she reads and writes on women and youth issues while raising her eleven year old daughter in a small Northern California farming town. She holds degrees in Librarianship, Spanish, and in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. You can reach her via email at mbrynnan@gmail.com.
Morgan Brynnan, 2018
2018, by Morgan Brynnan. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0

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How to be a Successful Progressive Changemaker: Resist! is available as a $10 ebook, 800 pages

 
Resist! Goals and Tactics for Changemakers offers an encyclopedic guide for how you can be a changemaker. Critics fault recent democracy uprisings for not having a positive plan for change, so this comprehensive guide includes international models of democratic local and national examples. The extensive book outlines major economic, environmental and political problems with examples of tactics currently used to solve them. It includes theories about power and social movements, communication techniques, and the story of the changemakers. The author traveled around the world to talk with changemakers, as well as doing extensive research, and is a feminist activist.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Part 1: Issues and Goals

Chapter 1: Globalization Issues

Globalization and Neoliberalism, Hybrid Cultures, Global Media, Global Discrimination, Global Power Shifts, War and Peace, Global Organizing

 

Chapter 2: Democracy vs. Autocracy

Desire for Real Democracy; Rise of Authoritarianism and Corruption; The Construction of Democracy; National Horizontal Models; Alternatives to Traditional Political Parties; Municipalist City Models—Past, Present and Future; Education Needs Democratic Reform

 

Chapter 3: Equal Opportunity vs. Poverty

Anti-Neoliberal Capitalism, Protests Against Inequality, Educated Middle-Class Changemakers, Solutions to Poverty and Inequality

 

Chapter 4: Change Work

Revolutionary Technological Changes, Young Adults Change the Work Culture, Worker Control, Gender Equity in the Workplace, Urban Economy Models, Solving Unemployment Locally, the New Economics

 

Chapter 5: The Bottom Line: Environmentalism

Climate Change Disasters; Case Study: Environmental Change is Difficult; Environmental Degradation; Powerful Climate Change Deniers; Tactics and Strategies; Replace Capitalism with Socialism; Change Government; Use the Courts; Attack Finance: Divestment and Boycotts; Develop Renewable Energy and Recycle, and Use Organic Agriculture; Lobby UN Climate Conferences; Our Future: Youth

 

Chapter 6: Who are the Changemakers?

Women Rising; No More Passive Princesses: Why Are Girls so Brave? Activists of Color: Black Activists, Latinx Dreamers, First Nation Youth Protest Pipelines

 

Part 2: Tactics and Theories

Chapter 7: Activist Tactics                                                                 A Case Study: Generation Z Tactics in the Never Again Movement; Individual Tactics; Alternatives to Traditional Political Parties; Movement of Movements to Replace Parties and Silos; New Tactics: Tend to Emotions in Long Occupations; Nonviolent Tactics; The Tyranny of Structurelessness; New Emphasis on the Grassroots; Successful Strategies for Organizing Groups

Chapter 8: How to Make a Revolution

Revolution Defined, What Triggers a Revolution? How to Lead a Revolution, Revolutionary History, Why the Global Uprisings Moved like Dominoes, Why were Tunisians the First Domino in the Revolutionary Wave? Cracks in the Economic System, Stages of Revolution, Did the Recent Uprisings Succeed?

 

Chapter 9: Theories about Social Movements and Power 

Theories about Power; Social Movement Theories; The Legacy of Global Justice Movement

Tactics; semi-colon Marxism, Anarchism, Feminism

 

Chapter 10: Communication Techniques to Gain Support

Media Power; Branding, Humor, and Theater; Electronic Networking; Debate About Too Much Emphasis on Social Media; Misuse of the Internet; Mobile Phones for All; TV, Radio and Films; Art and Music

Resist! Goals and Tactics for Changemakers

Q: It seems like such an uphill battle to fight the billionaire 1% like the Koch brothers who pull so many political strings in the era of Trump. What makes for effective strategies for change?

A: I explore this in my new ebook Resist! Goals and Tactics for Changemakers. Here’s some of what I learned.

Approach your goal as if fighting a non-violent battle. This means not being nice, not waiting for someone else to act, building alliances rather than acting alone, analyzing the enemy’s weak points, and having a long-term strategy

Approach your goal like a well-organized general or CEO. Social movements are based on groups rather than individuals and an organization is needed to provide continuity and success over time.

Approach your goal as if you were selling a product by branding it with slogans, logos, colors, and use of social media.

Approach your goal as if you were a patient realist. Environmentalist Bill McKibben advised activists to keep up the pressure, be a pain in the neck, and to never give up just as 350.org did with their campaign against oil pipelines.

Approach your goal as if you were a therapist. Pay attention to relationships, power dynamics, emotion, and effective communication skills.

Approach your goal as if you were a teacher who aims to make learning enjoyable.

Approach your goal as if you were a religious leader, discussing shared values and morality. “Values” is a current buzzword for progressives. Post your observations and experiences on https://greenlocalsolutions.wordpress.comR

Recent Global Feminist Actions

What would you add to recent examples of women’s activism?

  • Millions of Polish women go to the streets to protest attempts to roll back reproductive choice,
  • French women who oppose sexual harassment,
  • Chilean women students protesting campus sexism,
  • Palestinian women fight the occupation[i]
  • Armenian women demonstrated for their rights as well as changing prime ministers.
  • Saudi women launched a campaign in 2016 for an end to the guardianship laws, which are explained in a report and short videos titled “Boxed In: Women and Saudi Arabia’s Male Guardianship System.”[ii] *Egyptian women protest online, as the President el-Sisi government punishes feminist heads of NGOs.
  • A Swedish student named Elin Ersson blocked a plane from taking off from Gothenburg until an Afghan refugee was taken off the plane to prevent his deportation to what she felt was certain death.
  • Journalist Ksenia Sobchak, 35, ran for president of Russia against Putin, drawing from her five million Twitter followers.
  • Japanese girls tired of being assaulted while traveling on crowded trains to school wear metal pins/buttons stating, “I’m not going to take it! Groping is a crime!” A Japanese friend’s tactic is to pinch the harasser as hard as she can.
  • Women in Mexico City are fighting street harassment with apps and posting stickers showing a girl walking confidently.[iii] The #niunamemos (not one woman less lost to gender violence) campaign spread throughout Latin America.

*Kenyan women protest the lack of female cabinet members that violates their constitution, which states that women should be one-third of legislators and appointed political positions.

*Women riding bicycle campaigns occur in Muslim countries like Pakistan, Turkey, Iran, and Egypt.

 

Iranian women take off their veils and post their videos on websites like My Stealthy Freedom organized by Masih Alinejad. She also organized a #whitewednesdays campaign to wear white to protest compulsory hijab. Alinejad posted, “Civil disobedience is the first step to gain our victory.” In exile in the US, she described her activism in her book The Wind in My Hair: My Fight for Freedom in Modern Iran (2018). #Walking Unveiled was organized in 2018 after a viral video showed three Iranian police officers hitting a woman who they judged not to be properly covered. Alinejad also led a campaign of women posting photos riding bikes in defiance of a 2016 fatwa by Supreme Leader Khameini against cycling because it threatens their chastity.[iv]

In the US, women are rising up in response to President Donald Trump’s sexism, women are prominent leaders in Black Lives Matter, the Dreamers fight for immigrant rights, Fight for $15 (to raise the minimum wage), the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment and assault, and teacher wildcat strikes that began in West Virginia and spread to Oklahoma, Kentucky, North Carolina, Colorado, Arizona and other right-to-work states that don’t favor unions.

[i] Fadi Abu Shammalah and Jen Marlowe, “Palestinian Feminists are Fighting on Two Fronts,” TruthDig, June 17, 2018.

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/why-palestines-feminists-are-fighting-on-two-fronts/

[ii] Zuhour Mahmoud, “Hundreds of Thousands Join Saudi Women-Led Campaign to End Male Guardianship in the Kingdom,” Global Voices, September 4, 2016.

https://globalvoices.org/2016/09/04/hundreds-of-thousands-join-saudi-women-led-campaign-to-end-male-guardianship-in-the-kingdom/

[iii] https://www.girlsglobe.org/2018/05/08/women-are-claiming-back-the-streets-of-mexico/

[iv] “Women in Iran Post Photos and Videos,” Women in the World, September 21, 2016.

https://womenintheworld.com/2016/09/21/women-in-iran-post-photos-and-videos-defying-new-fatwa-against-cycling/

Did the Youth-Led Arab Spring Succeed or Fail? Juan Cole’s answer.

Historian Juan Cole maintains that the young activists did lead successful revolutions, defining revolution as a rapid change in social and political institutions and attitudes caused by a social movement.[i] Various social movements acting together create a revolution. Specifically, the radical youth stopped the practice of presidents for life turning power over to their sons as Mubarak was planning to do in Egypt. They disrupted the financial control of the ousted presidents and their allies in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya. Also, they opened up discussion of political issues and youth unemployment and creation of new political parties. What youth most wanted was karama (dignity), individual rights and freedom similar to social democracy in Nordic countries. Cole said they made “new social and media spaces in which their demands could be voiced.” However, they were naïve to think that deposing an autocrat would change the oppressive system. After the revolutions, they turned their focus from government to organizing thousands of new NGOs, where they continue to use their horizontal and pragmatic organizational skills. He predicts, “They have kicked off what is likely to be a long intergenerational argument.” Because the key problem of youth unemployment hasn’t been solved, they will continue to “agitate for change” having had practice in how to mobilize and network.[ii]

[i] Juan Cole. The New Arabs: How the Millennial Generation is Changing the Middle East. Simon & Schuster, 2014, pp. x-xiv.

[ii] Ibid., p. 270.

#NeverAgain gun control activists explain their tactics

David Hogg and Lauren Hogg. #Never Again. Random House, 2018.
What tactics did these Parkland, Florida, savvy and outspoken teenagers use to make so much happen so fast in the gun control movement? David Hogg explained in his #NeverAgain book that they were very disorganized and as teenagers, no one liked being told what to do. If someone had a good idea, they did it, without asking for approval. Individuals focused on what they did well, such as tweeting, giving interviews, or organizing. He said they didn’t have a plan or hire consultants and focus groups, but communicated the way they were used to online. They started by “going to war with the NRA” with tweets suggesting companies end their special deals with the NRA, which gave the students a “bigger stage” of national attention. Gonzales quickly gained more Twitter followers than the NRA. They picked a few clear goals and picked their battles, ignoring trolls but challenging well-known people like Laura Ingraham who criticized his question, “What if our politicians weren’t the bitch of the NRA?” They weren’t respectful of people in authority like Senator Marco Rubio. What Hogg said made them succeed is they “obsessively” stuck to the task of changing the national discussion about gun control, often spending the night at Cameron’s house and waking up with another idea. After the March for Our Lives in Washington, DC, they organized into committees. Hogg said Gonzales is the only “non-type A” person in the group, the “peaceful radiance at the center of all the spinning wheels.” He advises activists to stay loving and “never, ever stop pointing at the naked emperor.”

Video interviews with activists, including youth, by Gayle Kimball

United States

 

*California feminist activist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6JFyXFKycjE

 

*Feminist health activists: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PmpuIc4W6tY

 

*A Mexican teenage feminist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLuXZ4u_cxM

 

*GLBT activists: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7p8lTq1byLU

 

*Feminist Visions of the Future: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sJszKFyJ08

 

*Social justice research by first year students: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3oWh0nRgeo8

 

*Men’s Changing Roles: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OdYjjkN11dA

 

*Envionmental activists in Louisiana and Lanai: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cB1xolBsT80

 

*Climate change activist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqgmlRUkPu8

 

*First graders advocate saving the Rain Forests: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fg88Twxi-HA

 

*Dealing with racism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i897g0yaqLw

 

*Native American activist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3tSsqer0Oio

 

*Asian American activists: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBx5wB83AKE

 

*An undocumenter Dreamer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=if1C9RUEjC0

 

*Counselors and a student explain how to develop resilience in the face of adversity: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1tsirxrKqCg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYH1B22tXlc

 

*Occupy activist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AFNT3fzRXHY

 

*The political views of Generation Z students in the US, India and Turkey:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYO1C5lOwbI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SznisYhNf5U

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DkTz3JFdm0I

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ykTa_ub3oI

 

Global

*Pakistani feminists: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWEOKO-d7xY

 

*The Gezi Park Uprising in Istanbul as explained by a Turkish partipant: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=We4NXaVlJJ4

 

*The Greek Sintagma Square demonstrations in Athens: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3RVA7EkZLg

 

*Nosostros social center in Athens: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJ7yXZuaSXs

 

*Jerome Roos, a Dutch activist and editor of ROAR Magazine discusses how to change the neoliberal system: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LhsKZrlgc6s

 

*French activism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emjKw24cciY

 

*Egyptian activists: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3HrqR-i9_Q

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uB5BrUnQ6QA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3HrqR-i9_Q

 

*Impressions of Finland by a Chinese student: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_39eeL31uo8

 

*A Swedish college student: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Unzzh4Jh8KM

 

*South African teen activist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6vE9Yr9UtU

 

*An Ethiopian medical student: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BTwT8tgoG38

 

*A Chinese student discusses lack of freedom: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vh0MN6fuuRQ

 

*South Koreans criticize the education system: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0hq5KoEoY-w