Civil Resistance: What Everyone Needs to Know

Civil Resistance: What Everyone Needs to Know
, Erica Chenoweth
(Oxford University Press, 2021.

Civil resistance is a method of conflict through which unarmed civilians use a variety of coordinated methods (strikes, protests, demonstrations, boycotts, and many other tactics) to prosecute a conflict without directly harming or threatening to harm an opponent. Sometimes called nonviolent resistance, unarmed struggle, or nonviolent action, this form of political action is now a mainstay across the globe. It was a central form of resistance in postwar anti-colonial movements, the 1989 revolutions, and the Arab Awakenings, and people are practicing civil resistance at higher rates than ever before around the world, including in the United States. If we want to understand the manifold protest movements emerging around the globe, we need a thorough understanding of civil resistance and its many dynamics and manifestations.

In Civil Resistance: What Everyone Needs to Know®, Erica Chenoweth–one of the world’s leading scholars on the topic–explains what civil resistance is, how it works, why it sometimes fails, how violence and repression affect it, and the long-term impacts of such resistance. Featuring both historical cases of civil resistance and more contemporary examples such as the Arab Awakenings and various ongoing movements in the United States, this book provides a comprehensive yet pithy overview of this enormously important subject.

Introduces the essentials of how and why civil resistance works in a conversational and accessible style
Concise yet systematic overview that draws from both historical and contemporary cases, including the present-day United States
Demonstrates the important role of civil resistance in the world we live in today

“This book is a remarkable achievement, synthesizing up-to-date research, new case accounts, and significant new insights in a way that is accessible to all. Take its title literally. It is a guide for everyone—whether new or with years of experience—to the dynamics of nonviolent movements fighting for rights, freedom, and justice. I highly recommend it.”
   – Hardy Merriman, President & CEO, International Center on Nonviolent Conflict

“This book is as much advocacy as it is an analysis of nonviolence. Civil Resistance: What Everyone Needs to Know is an unwavering introductory guide and comprehensive toolkit to civil resistance’s methods and potential.”
   – Maiyoraa Jeyabraba, Journal of Peace Research

Read Ian Sinclairs review of this book at Peace News here:  

Publishing details here:  


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