A guide to civil resistance: review

Carter, April; Howard Clark & Michael Randle (eds.) (2013, 2015) A Guide to Civil Resistance. Vol. 1: A Bibliography of People Power and Nonviolent Protest. Vol. 2: A Bibliography of Social Movements and Nonviolent Action. London: Green Print, 257 pp., 257pp., online at http://civilresistance.info (vol. 1 available, vol. 2 forthcoming). ISBN: 9781854251084, 9781854251138

A review in Journal of Peace Research Book notes, 21 October 2015, https://www.prio.org/JPR/BookNotes/?x=100

reviewed by Brian Martin
University of Wollongong

To make better sense of contemporary nonviolent struggles and the burgeoning body of writing about them, A Guide to Civil Resistance is worthwhile for both newcomers and experienced scholars. The range of topics is broad, covering different methods and campaigns in countries around the world over the past 70 years. As well as treatments of nonviolent action generally, there are sections on anti-colonial struggles, campaigns in post-communist countries, struggles against oppressive governments in Africa, Asia, Latin America and elsewhere, indigenous movements, green campaigns, labour movements, peace activism, feminist campaigning, gay and lesbian activism, and global justice campaigns, among other topics. Major studies, both scholarly and activist-oriented, are cited when available; articles from movement magazines are included as well. Although called a bibliography, the guide has elements of a literature review. Most of the books and articles listed are accompanied by annotations, making this far more useful than typical reference lists. Furthermore, the editors have provided informative introductions to sections and sub-sections; these could even be read separately as overviews of social and political developments from a social movement perspective. Although many additional topics and sources could have been added, and different choices made about which topics to emphasise, the editors have done a tremendous service to the field with this wide-ranging, insightful, informative guide.

Go to

Brian Martin's book reviews

Brian Martin's publications

Brian Martin's website