Tag Archives: revolution

global young women’s activism eBook

Brave: Young Women’s Global Revolution Volume 1 Themes

Gayle Kimball, Ph.D.

400 pages $9.99 eBook available now on Amazon and other platforms.

Vol. 2 about regional activism will follow in a few weeks.

Brave explores young women’s issues and activism globally, based on hundreds of interviews—some videotaped, and over 4,000 surveys from 88 countries. What makes Brave unique is its global rather than regional reach and its rare inclusion of many young women’s voices. The book includes popular cultural references and feminists’ critiques of the economic and political system. Volume 1 is about global issues and Volume 2 is about regional activism. Discussion questions and activities end each of the five chapters. Chapter titles are: The Future is Female, Global Desire for Equality, Global Status of Young Women, Consumerism Targets “Girl Power,” Global Media Both Helps and Inhibits Girls.

The New Revolutionary View: Oscar ten Houten

Oscar ten Houten (born 1978) participated and wrote about the 2011 uprisings in Europe; “For one whole year living in a tent on a hundred different squares.”[i] He observed that the old school view of revolution was that it’s a serious matter with accusations of others not being revolutionary enough.[ii] The new view of youthful revolutionaries is that it brings joy, unity and fun because satire is a powerful weapon against authorities. The new revolutionaries go beyond political theories and isms to the deeper issue of sustainability and have a shared belief in equality. He thinks there’s nothing wrong with supporting a political party if it helps reach an objective and that there are always leaders who get things done, but they should step back when their task is completed. Another new characteristic is the revolution will be televised live. He changed his mind about nonviolence while he participated in the Gezi Occupation in Turkey, realizing that police aggression must be challenged to empower the people, as it was in Istanbul with Molotov cocktails, burning buses and burning sofas, guarding barricades, and shining lasers on police drivers. He realized, “Not many authorities will allow a peaceful revolution to happen.”[iii]

[i] Oscar ten Houten, “First Wave: A Year of Revolution,” Kindle Edition, 2012.

[ii] Oscar ten Houten. #Occupy Gezi. @postvirtual, 2013, pp. 102-4.

[iii] Ibid, p. 105.

CANVAS leader on how to start a revolution

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/mar/08/five-ways-start-revolution-srdja-popovic-humour-non-violenceow to start a revolution in five easy steps: humour and hobbits, but no guns

Srdja Popovic shares his guide to changing the world – explaining why jokes are more powerful than guns and revolutions can start anywhere

  1. It can happen anywhere

Innumerable would-be activists have come to me over the years saying “I like what you teach, and I know it worked for Serbia, but revolution will never happen here.” Judging from history, it seems as if violence is what shapes the world. When you are facing state brutality, widespread corruption and an authoritarian system that thrives on fear, it is easy to feel that way. But time and again I have seen many of those very same people go on to spark revolutions in their own countries. Even under the direst conditions, it is still possible to get people to fight for a cause. So the first step in starting a revolution is believing that it can happen, wherever you are.

  1. Activism doesn’t have to be boring

The classic mainstays of non-violence – marches, sit-ins, vigils and strikes – all have their place, but it’s often easier to engage others by using creative tactics such as music, street theatre, bold imagery and jokes. Lots of jokes. Preferably rude ones at the expense of whichever oppressive force you are trying to overthrow. It’s common for people launching nonviolent movements to cite Gandhi, say, or Martin Luther King, as their inspiration, but those guys, for all their many, many virtues, simply weren’t that hilarious. If you’re hoping to get a mass movement going within a very short span of time in the age of the internet, humour is a key strategy. Also, by and large, dictators hate jokes.

  1. Pick your battles

In The Art of War, Sun Tzu emphasises the importance of trying to match your strong points against your enemy’s weak points. The best revolutionary leaders are adept at spotting these and planning their campaigns around them. Your opponent may have superior military might, but perhaps you have greater numbers, or are more nimble, or are simply a lot cooler. In Serbia, my friends and I made Milosevic a laughing stock simply by painting his face on a barrel and encouraging people to beat it with sticks. That was funny enough, but when the police arrived to arrest the barrel things really took off. It’s hard to remember to be scared when you can’t stop laughing. And what is less cool than sending armed men to arrest a joke?

  1. Hobbits can save the world

I’ve always loved JRR Tolkien and even in the darkest moments of the Serbian campaign, when Milosevic and the madness of “ethnic cleansing” controlled everything around us, I would take courage from the bit where Galadriel tells the hobbit Frodo that “even the smallest creature can change the world”. From the Iliad onwards, history seems to have been intent on telling us that our heroes should be elite warriors or genius outliers. But when you look at some of the people who have had an enduring impact on our culture today – Harvey Milk, say, or Malala Yousafzai – many of them aren’t obvious hero material. They started out as ordinary, even unassuming individuals, but went on to achieve exceptional things. In other words, they are hobbits.

  1. Remember that violence doesn’t work

I have dedicated my life to non-violence, but the reality is that you can be opposed to violence in all its forms and yet when you pick up a gun, still feel, in some dark place in your soul, as if there is no challenge you can’t face and no problem you can’t solve. Being armed changes people, and sometimes revolutions that start out peaceful can turn violent. But before you consider a turn to the dark side, consider the fact that research shows that it is often the person with the gun who fails most miserably. In an analysis of every conflict between 1900 and 2006, two US academics discovered that non-violent resistance campaigns were nearly twice as likely to succeed as violent ones. Keep that at the forefront of your mind for the times when your principles are challenged.