In this timely, highly original, and controversial narrative, New York Times bestselling author Mark Kurlansky discusses nonviolence as a distinct entity, a course of action, rather than a mere state of mind. Nonviolence can and should be a technique for overcoming social injustice and ending wars, he asserts, which is why it is the preferred method of those who speak truth to power. Nonviolence is a sweeping yet concise history that moves from ancient Hindu times to present-day conflicts raging in the Middle East and elsewhere. Kurlansky also brings into focus just why nonviolence is a “dangerous” idea, and asks such provocative questions as: Is there such a thing as a “just war”? Could nonviolence have worked against even the most evil regimes in history? Kurlansky draws from history twenty-five provocative lessons on the subject that we can use to effect change today. He shows how, time and again, violence is used to suppress nonviolence and its practitioners–Gandhi and Martin Luther King, for example; that the stated deterrence value of standing national armies and huge weapons arsenals is, at best, negligible; and, encouragingly, that much of the hard work necessary to begin a movement to end war is already complete. It simply needs to be embraced and accelerated. Engaging, scholarly, and brilliantly reasoned, Nonviolence is a work that compels readers to look at history in an entirely new way. This is not just a manifesto for our times but a trailblazing book whose time has come. From the Hardcover edition.
Published by Modern Library on 01/21/2009
Book details: 224 pages.
An essential compendium for understanding Gandhi's profound legacy. "One has to speak out and stand up for one's convictions. Inaction at a time of conflagration is inexcusable."—Mahatma Gandhi The basic principles of Gandhi's philosophy of non-violence (Ahimsa) and non-violent action (Satyagraha) were chosen by Thomas Merton for this volume in 1965. In his challenging Introduction, "Gandhi and the One-Eyed Giant," Merton emphasizes the importance of action rather than mere pacifism as a central component of non-violence, and illustrates how the foundations of Gandhi's universal truths are linked to traditional Hindu Dharma, the Greek philosophers, and the teachings of Christ and Thomas Aquinas. Educated as a Westerner in South Africa, it was Gandhi's desire to set aside the caste system as well as his political struggles in India which led him to discover the dynamic power of non-cooperation. But, non-violence for Gandhi "was not simply a political tactic," as Merton observes: "the spirit of non-violence sprang from an inner realization of spiritual unity in himself." Gandhi's politics of spiritual integrity have influenced generations of people around the world, as well as civil rights leaders from Martin Luther King, Jr. and Steve Biko to Václav Havel and Aung San Suu Kyi. Mark Kurlansky has written an insightful preface for this edition that touches upon the history of non-violence and reflects the core of Gandhi's spiritual and ethical doctrine in the context of current global conflicts.
Published by New Directions Publishing on 11/17/2007
Book details: 144 pages.
Why do some national movements use violent protest and others nonviolent protest? Wendy Pearlman shows that much of the answer lies inside movements themselves. Nonviolent protest requires coordination and restraint, which only a cohesive movement can provide. When, by contrast, a movement is fragmented, factional competition generates new incentives for violence and authority structures are too weak to constrain escalation. Pearlman reveals these patterns across one hundred years in the Palestinian national movement, with comparisons to South Africa and Northern Ireland. To those who ask why there is no Palestinian Gandhi, Pearlman demonstrates that nonviolence is not simply a matter of leadership. Nor is violence attributable only to religion, emotions or stark instrumentality. Instead, a movement's organizational structure mediates the strategies that it employs. By taking readers on a journey from civil disobedience to suicide bombings, this book offers fresh insight into the dynamics of conflict and mobilization.
Published by Cambridge University Press on 10/24/2011
Book details: 144 pages.
The issues of South Africa and the nuclear bomb and theologies of liberation have for some time spotlighted the question of violence and non-violence. The strength or weakness of Gandhian non-violence often comes up in discussions on the subject. This manuscript analyzes Gandhian non-violence. The analysis is able, thorough andthis is what I most respond tomarked both by rigorous Western-style scrutiny and a familiarity with Gandhis philosophical and religious roots. He provides a strong theoretical basis for the instinctive reactions of many of Gandhis non-violence, for the widespread and commonsense belief that in general non-violence is sound and beneficial but that non-violent extremism may not be. His treatment of Gandhian non-violence in the context of Indian philosophy and metaphysics is of high calibre. His approach is both fresh and successful. Rajmohan Gandhi Borman shows in great detail where Gandhis thought arises from the Upanisads, The Bhagavad Gita, and a few other ancient documents. He also shows clearly where Gandhi deviates from his sources. As to argument, Borman uses a close-grained approach characteristic of analytic philosophy. Borman claims that Gandhis principles are extreme and unsupportable, and eventually lead to contradiction. It is not an intellectual biography, and it does not deal with the development of Gandhis thought. Rather it analyzes the logic of his position, and shows how he came to defend it from new angles in different circumstances. The text is well related to historical events, but does not pretend to history. Robert C. Neville The manuscript is not, and does not pretend to be, a historical analysis of Mahatma Gandhis experience. Its notable strength lies in its unique and commendable examination of Gandhis philosophy of non-violence, and in this particular respect it is the best study of the subject that I have read among the hundreds of books that deal with aspects of Gandhis contribution to our understanding of non-violence. Dennis Dalton It is refreshing to read an author who has a basis for understanding Gandhi since so many writers fail to understand or appreciate the spiritual essentials that form the core of Gandhis life and message. This book rings with clear, accurate, insightful understandings of Gandhi. It explores fully Gandhis philosophy of action and brings in scriptural sources for concepts that Gandhi practiced in his everyday affairs. I think the Western reader will gain a much needed clarification of Gandhian philosophy, methods, and actions, and especially of the source of his inspiration and intentions. Jean B. Mann
Published by SUNY Press on 09/30/1986
Book details: 287 pages.
More than ever, Walter Wink believes, the Christian tradition of nonviolence is needed as an alternative to the dominant and death-dealing "powers" of our consumerist culture and fractured world. In this small book Wink offers a precis of his whole thinking about this issue, including the relation of Jesus and his message to politics and nonviolence, the history of nonviolent efforts, and how nonviolence can win the day when others don't hesitate to resort to violence or terror to achieve their aims.
Published by Fortress Press on 07/16/2019
Book details: 128 pages.
DIVFine explanation of civil disobedience shows how great pacifist used non-violent philosophy to lead India to independence. Self-discipline, fasting, social boycotts, strikes, other techniques. /div
Published by Courier Corporation on 03/07/2012
Book details: 432 pages.
* Includes an Introduction from Rosemary Radford Ruether * Shows on-the-ground realities of interreligious relations
Published by Fortress Press
Book details: 144 pages.
Through an original and close reading of the key literature regarding both revolutionary violence and nonviolence, this book collapses the widely-assumed concepts of violence and nonviolence as mutually exclusive. By revealing that violence and nonviolence are braided concepts arising from human action, Peyman Vahabzadeh submits that in many cases the actions deemed to be either violent or nonviolent might actually produce outcomes that are not essentially different. Vahabzadeh offers a conceptual phenomenology of the key thinkers and theorists of both revolutionary violence and various approaches to nonviolence. Arguing that violence is inseparable from civilizations, Violence and Nonviolence concludes by making a number of original conceptualizations regarding the relationship between violence and nonviolence, exploring the possibility of a nonviolent future and proposing to understand the relationship between the two concepts as concentric, not opposites.
Published by University of Toronto Press on 01/22/2019
Book details: 360 pages.
Tunisian and Egyptian protestors famously made use of social media to rally supporters and disseminate information as the "Arab Spring" began to unfold in 2010. Less well known, but with just as much potential to bring about social change, are ongoing local efforts to use social media and other forms of technology to prevent deadly outbreaks of violence. In The Technology of Nonviolence, Joseph Bock describes and documents technology-enhanced efforts to stop violence before it happens in Africa, Asia, and the United States. Once peacekeeping was the purview of international observers, but today local citizens take violence prevention into their own hands. These local approaches often involve technology--including the use of digital mapping, crowdsourcing, and mathematical pattern recognition to identify likely locations of violence--but, as Bock shows, technological advances are of little value unless they are used by a trained cadre of community organizers. After covering general concepts in violence prevention and describing technological approaches to tracking conflict and cooperation, Bock offers five case studies that range from "low-tech" interventions to prevent ethnic and religious violence in Ahmedebad, India, to an anti-gang initiative in Chicago that uses Second Life to train its "violence interrupters." There is solid evidence of success, Bock concludes, but there is much to be discovered, developed, and, most important, implemented.
Published by MIT Press on 07/13/2012
Book details: 312 pages.
This book embraces two centuries of the history of non-violence, reconstructing the great historical crises that this movement has faced. In this book the historical reconstruction is intertwined with the philosophical and psychological analysis of the moral dilemmas that great historical crises inevitably imply.
Published by Lexington Books on 04/09/2015
Book details: 246 pages.