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Nonviolent Conflict and Civil Resistance

ISBN: 978-1-78190-345-2, eISBN: 978-1-78190-346-9

Publication date: 19 September 2012


The term “nonviolence” is often misconstrued and misunderstood (Schock, 2003). Some people associate it with passivity, neutrality, or the total avoidance of conflict. Others assume it is a “bourgeois” tactic that entails nothing more than negotiation, compromise, and gentle calls for change. Some believe that nonviolence is only for total pacifists – that is, those who, for religious or moral reasons, refuse to use any form of violence under any circumstances. Another misconception is that nonviolent methods can only be used in democracies, where the state is reluctant to crack down violently on civilian resisters. And many think that nonviolent methods are inherently slow – requiring long periods of time to yield results – and are generally less effective than violence methods.


Erickson Nepstad, S. and Kurtz, L.R. (2012), "Introduction", Erickson Nepstad, S. and Kurtz, L.R. (Ed.) Nonviolent Conflict and Civil Resistance (Research in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change, Vol. 34), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. xi-xxvii.



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