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Civil Resistance Cover

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Civil Resistance

Comparative Perspectives on Nonviolent Struggle

Kurt Schock

In the past quarter century the world has witnessed dramatic social and political transformations, due in part to an upsurge in civil resistance. There have been significant uprisings around the globe, including the toppling of communist regimes in Eastern Europe, the Color Revolutions, the Arab Spring, protests against war and economic inequality, countless struggles against corruption, and demands for more equitable distribution of land. These actions have attracted substantial scholarly attention, reflected in the growth of literature on social movements and revolution as well as literature on nonviolent resistance. Until now, however, the two bodies of literature have largely developed in parallel—with relatively little acknowledgment of the existence of the other.

In this useful collection, an international and interdisciplinary group of scholars takes stock of the current state of the theoretical and empirical literature on civil resistance. Contributors analyze key processes of nonviolent struggle and identify both frictions and points of synthesis between the narrower literature on civil resistance and the broader literature on social movements and revolution. By doing so, Civil Resistance: Comparative Perspectives on Nonviolent Struggle pushes the boundaries of the study of civil resistance and generates social scientific knowledge that will be helpful for all scholars and activists concerned with democracy, human rights, and social justice.


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Civil Rights Advocacy on Behalf of the Poor

By Catherine M. Paden

Representation of the poor has never been the top priority for civil rights organizations, which exist to eradicate racially prejudiced and discriminatory practices and policy. Scholars have argued that the activities and ideologies of civil rights groups have functioned with a distinct middle-class bias since well before the 1960s civil rights movement. Additionally, all political organizations face disincentives to represent the poor—such advocacy is expensive and politically unpopular, and often involves trade-offs with other issues that are more central to organizations' missions.

In Civil Rights Advocacy on Behalf of the Poor, Catherine M. Paden examines five civil rights organizations and explores why they chose to represent the poor—specifically low-income African Americans—during six legislative periods considering welfare reform. Paden's archival research into groups such as NAACP, the Congress of Racial Equality, and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and her extensive interviews with movement leaders and activists reveal that national organizations advocate on behalf of the poor when they have incentives to do so. Organizational decisions to represent the poor are sometimes strategic, sometimes based on an ideological commitment, and sometimes both. However, Paden points out that decisions are never purely ideological—groups are always aware of strategy and of their positions within their issue niche when they fix their priorities.

Civil Rights Advocacy on Behalf of the Poor also points to the critical role that radical organizations play in increasing representation in the U.S. political system. Paden maintains that radical groups matter not because their representation affects long-term policy change or is particularly effective in representing the interest of marginal groups. Rather, she argues, it is because they compete with more mainstream or conservative organizations for their constituencies.

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Civil Rights in the Gateway to the South

Louisville, Kentucky, 1945-1980

Tracy K'Meyer

Situated on the banks of the Ohio River, Louisville, Kentucky, represents a cultural and geographical intersection of North and South. Throughout its history, Louisville has simultaneously displayed northern and southern characteristics in its race relations. In their struggles against racial injustice in the mid-twentieth century, activists in Louisville crossed racial, economic, and political dividing lines to form a wide array of alliances not seen in other cities of its size. In Civil Rights in the Gateway to the South: Louisville, Kentucky, 1945–1980, noted historian Tracy E. K’Meyer provides the first comprehensive look at the distinctive elements of Louisville’s civil rights movement. K’Meyer frames her groundbreaking analysis by defining a border as a space where historical patterns and social concerns overlap. From this vantage point, she argues that broad coalitions of Louisvillians waged long-term, interconnected battles during the city’s civil rights movement. K’Meyer shows that Louisville’s border city dynamics influenced both its racial tensions and its citizens’ approaches to change. Unlike African Americans in southern cities, Louisville’s black citizens did not face entrenched restrictions against voting and other forms of civic engagement. Louisville schools were integrated relatively peacefully in 1956, long before their counterparts in the Deep South. However, the city bore the marks of Jim Crow segregation in public accommodations until the 1960s. Louisville joined other southern cities that were feeling the heat of racial tensions, primarily during open housing and busing conflicts (more commonly seen in the North) in the late 1960s and 1970s. In response to Louisville’s unique blend of racial problems, activists employed northern models of voter mobilization and lobbying, as well as methods of civil disobedience usually seen in the South. They crossed traditional barriers between the movements for racial and economic justice to unite in common action. Borrowing tactics from their neighbors to the north and south, Louisville citizens merged their concerns and consolidated their efforts to increase justice and fairness in their border city. By examining this unique convergence of activist methods, Civil Rights in the Gateway to the South provides a better understanding of the circumstances that unified the movement across regional boundaries.

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Civil Rights in the Texas Borderlands

Dr. Lawrence A. Nixon and Black Activism

Will Guzmán

In 1907, physician Lawrence A. Nixon fled the racial violence of central Texas to settle in the border town of El Paso. There he became a community and civil rights leader. His victories in two Supreme Court decisions paved the way for dismantling all-white political primaries across the South. Will Guzmán delves into Nixon's lifelong struggle against Jim Crow. Linking Nixon's activism to his independence from the white economy, support from the NAACP, and the man's own indefatigable courage, Guzmán also sheds light on Nixon's presence in symbolic and literal borderlands--as an educated professional in a time when few went to college, as an African American who made waves when most feared violent reprisal, and as someone living on the mythical American frontier as well as an international boundary. A powerful addition to the literature on African Americans in the Southwest, Civil Rights in the Texas Borderlands explores seldom-studied corners of the Black past and the civil rights movement.

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Clan Cleansing in Somalia

The Ruinous Legacy of 1991

By Lidwien Kapteijns

In 1991, certain political and military leaders in Somalia, wishing to gain exclusive control over the state, mobilized their followers to use terror—wounding, raping, and killing—to expel a vast number of Somalis from the capital city of Mogadishu and south-central and southern Somalia. Manipulating clan sentiment, they succeeded in turning ordinary civilians against neighbors, friends, and coworkers. Although this episode of organized communal violence is common knowledge among Somalis, its real nature has not been publicly acknowledged and has been ignored, concealed, or misrepresented in scholarly works and political memoirs—until now. Marshaling a vast amount of source material, including Somali poetry and survivor accounts, Clan Cleansing in Somalia analyzes this campaign of clan cleansing against the historical background of a violent and divisive military dictatorship, in the contemporary context of regime collapse, and in relationship to the rampant militia warfare that followed in its wake.

Clan Cleansing in Somalia also reflects on the relationship between history, truth, and postconflict reconstruction in Somalia. Documenting the organization and intent behind the campaign of clan cleansing, Lidwien Kapteijns traces the emergence of the hate narratives and code words that came to serve as rationales and triggers for the violence. However, it was not clans that killed, she insists, but people who killed in the name of clan. Kapteijns argues that the mutual forgiveness for which politicians often so lightly call is not a feasible proposition as long as the violent acts for which Somalis should forgive each other remain suppressed and undiscussed. Clan Cleansing in Somalia establishes that public acknowledgment of the ruinous turn to communal violence is indispensable to social and moral repair, and can provide a gateway for the critical memory work required from Somalis on all sides of this multifaceted conflict.

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Classifying by Race

Paul E. Peterson

The contemporary debate over racial classification has been dominated by fringe voices in American society. Cries from the right say history should be abrogated and public policy made color-blind, while zealots of the left insist that all customs, language, institutions, and practices are racially tinged and that only aggressive, color-conscious programs can reverse the course of American history. The essays in this volume, however, recognize that racial classification is an issue that cuts too deep and poses too many constitutional questions to be resolved by slogans of either the right or the left.

The contributors to this volume are James Alt, Kenneth Benoit, Henry Brady, John Bruce, Rodolfo O. de la Garza, Andrew Gelman, Lani Guinier, Fredrick C. Harris, Gary King, Robert C. Lieberman, David Ian Lublin, David Metz, Paul E. Peterson, Kay Lehman Schlozman, Kenneth Shepsle, Theda Skocpol, Katherine Tate, Richard Valelly, Sidney Verba, and Margaret Weir.

Originally published in 1995.

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

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Cold War Broadcasting

Impact on the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe

Edited by A. Ross Johnson, R. Eugene Parta

The book examines the role of Western broadcasting to the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe during the Cold War, with a focus on Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty. It includes chapters by radio veterans and by scholars who have conducted research on the subject in once-secret Soviet bloc archives and in Western records. It also contains a selection of translated documents from formerly secret Soviet and East European archives, most of them published here for the first time.

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Cold War Progressives

Women's Interracial Organizing for Peace and Freedom

In recognizing the relation between gender, race, and class oppression, American women of the postwar Progressive Party made the claim that peace required not merely the absence of violence, but also the presence of social and political equality. For progressive women, peace was the essential thread that connected the various aspects of their activist agendas. This study maps the routes taken by postwar popular front women activists into peace and freedom movements of the 1960s and 1970s. Historian Jacqueline Castledine tells the story of their decades-long effort to keep their intertwined social and political causes from unraveling and to maintain the connections among peace, feminism, and racial equality._x000B_

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Collective Dreams

Political Imagination and Community

Keally D. McBride

How do we go about imagining different and better worlds for ourselves? Collective Dreams looks at ideals of community, frequently embraced as the basis for reform across the political spectrum, as the predominant form of political imagination in America today. Examining how these ideals circulate without having much real impact on social change provides an opportunity to explore the difficulties of practicing critical theory in a capitalist society. Different chapters investigate how ideals of community intersect with conceptions of self and identity, family, the public sphere and civil society, and the state, situating community at the core of the most contested political and social arenas of our time. Ideals of community also influence how we evaluate, choose, and build the spaces in which we live, as the author’s investigations of Celebration, Florida, and of West Philadelphia show. Following in the tradition of Walter Benjamin, Keally McBride reveals how consumer culture affects our collective experience of community as well as our ability to imagine alternative political and social orders. Taking ideals of community as a case study, Collective Dreams also explores the structure and function of political imagination to answer the following questions: What do these oppositional ideals reveal about our current political and social experiences? How is the way we imagine alternative communities nonetheless influenced by capitalism, liberalism, and individualism? How can these ideals of community be used more effectively to create social change?

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The Color Revolutions

By Lincoln A. Mitchell

From late 2003 through mid-2005, a series of peaceful street protests toppled corrupt and undemocratic regimes in Georgia, Ukraine, and Kyrgyzstan and ushered in the election of new presidents in all three nations. These movements—collectively known as the Color Revolutions—were greeted in the West as democratic breakthroughs that might thoroughly reshape the political terrain of the former Soviet Union.

But as Lincoln A. Mitchell explains in The Color Revolutions, it has since become clear that these protests were as much reflections of continuity as they were moments of radical change. Not only did these movements do little to spur democratic change in other post-Soviet states, but their impact on Georgia, Ukraine, and Kyrgyzstan themselves was quite different from what was initially expected. In fact, Mitchell suggests, the Color Revolutions are best understood as phases in each nation's long post-Communist transition: significant events, to be sure, but far short of true revolutions.

The Color Revolutions explores the causes and consequences of all three Color Revolutions—the Rose Revolution in Georgia, the Orange Revolution in Ukraine, and the Tulip Revolution in Kyrgyzstan—identifying both common themes and national variations. Mitchell's analysis also addresses the role of American democracy promotion programs, the responses of nondemocratic regimes to the Color Revolutions, the impact of these events on U.S.-Russian relations, and the failed "revolutions" in Azerbaijan and Belarus in 2005 and 2006.

At a time when the Arab Spring has raised hopes for democratic development in the Middle East, Mitchell's account of the Color Revolutions serves as a valuable reminder of the dangers of confusing dramatic moments with lasting democratic breakthroughs.

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