On-Line Database of Historical Nonviolent Actions

Students of George Lakey’s peace and conflict studies program at Swarthmore College have assembled an on-line database of historical nonviolent actions, analyzed and categorized according to the scheme developed by Gene Sharp.

You can search this database by country, era, campaign “wave” (e.g. “Arab Awakening” or “U.S. Civil Rights Movement”), methods (e.g. “revenue refusal”), or by hunting for search terms in the action descriptions.

George Lakey describes the usefulness of the project:

Both strategists and scholars will be interested in the abundance of patterns among the cases, to be noted and explored. One reason these cases are presented in a database rather than in book form is to make it easier to explore connections: patterns are more visible and easily accessible. As the database grows, connections will become even more noticeable.

Some bits and pieces from here and there:

  • A Ron Paul Republican going by the name Simon Rierdon has decided to shrug, saying “the past two tax seasons when I’ve had to fork over thousands of dollars to a government that I don’t think is legitimate, and even more, murderous, has made me rethink my priorities.”
  • A liberal group going by the name War Costs is swimming upstream against the tide of military contractor lobbyists and trying to put America’s cancerous military spending on the agenda of the Congressional deficit committee.
  • Speaking of putting military spending on the agenda, you might consider dropping this article in the inbox of your climate activist friends. It talks about the impact of America’s military adventures on climate-changing atmospheric emissions. “The Pentagon has a blanket exemption in all international climate agreements” and uses an enormous amount of fossil fuel. According to the article, the war in Iraq itself was a bigger contributor to annual CO2 emissions than 139 of the world’s nations.