Nonviolence Course 2011/12
“What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.” (*)
Join us in our tenth and last of the year-long series of workshops about using nonivolence effectively to bring about social change. The year-long group is organising the day in a way that will share new skills, present opportunities for learning more, as well as imparting a sense of the whole course. The day will wrap up with cake and a celebration of all we've learned and achieved and they invite you to come and find out more before this course is over ...
The goals of the day are
Booking is required. Workshop fee: any donation that is right for your pocket and we'll put that towards Turning the Tide continuing this work.
When we think about what it is that politicises people, it is not so much books or ideas, but experience. (*)
One of the greatest challenges and joys of our time is joining together with others to work on healing our world and ourselves. Many of us with concerns sometimes can feel powerless to know what to do. This weekend workshop looks at what is personal and group empowerment and what are the conditions that help people take action. We'll also review the year-long group's learning journey and push along the process of deciding how to organising June's workshop. This is a residential weekend for year-long course members only.
May's workshop goals
Pre-worshop reflection questions
Suggested resources: We can do that! Empowerment for social change
Hammer of Justice - 3-page article about activists' protest of export of British Hawk jets to Indonesia
With my Hammer - Music group Seize the Day tells the activists protest story through song, video at the bottom of the page
The Oracles of Pennsylvania Avenue (video in two parts, each about 50 minutes long)
The Women of Tahir Square (video, about 27 minutes)
Shadow Dance: Liberating the power and creativity of your dark side, a book by David Richo
If the world is to be healed through human efforts, I am convinced it will be by ordinary people, people whose love for this life is even greater than their fear. (*)
Whether you call it spirituality, faith, religion, social consciousness, values or nothing at all, 'Inner and outer: spirituality and activism' invites people to reflect upon the importance of inner work and its connection to outer change.
A few words from this month's facilitators...
1. We would like to invite you - if you wish - to bring along something which represents something about your deep inner beliefs or spirituality. We will share these together at the start of the workshop.
2. Below are two short "readings" - if you would like to look at them before the workshop. We won't be directly basing any part of the workshop on these, but they are intended to help get your "juices flowing" - thinking, questioning, agreeing or disagreeing about aspects of spirituality and activism.
3. Two questions you may like to ponder -
- What does “spirituality” (or “deep inner values”) mean to me ?
- How does this affect my approach to action for social change?
Suggested resources: Inner and outer: spirituality and activism
Another world is not only possible, she's on her way. On a quiet day, if I listen very carefully, I can her her breathing. (*)
March's pre-workshop reflection question
Suggested resources: The Living Revolution: building the alternative
Living on Low Carbon (first person account)
A farm for the future (video, about 48 minutes)
Seeding Democracy - Vandana Shiva (video, about 6 minutes)
Christiania, you have a my heart (video, about an hour)
The Age of Stupid (same director as the McLibel film)
Monopoly presents the problem. Co-opoly offers the solution. (with interesting short videos embedded in the article)
ecodharma - radical ecology radical dharma
The Land - an occasional magazine about land rights
Soma -- (article follows brief description) Soma is a series of workshops using body games to build a group dynamic. Created in Brazil as a therapy for activists fighting the military dictatorship, Soma focuses on challenging hierarchical relationships, observing the body as material to talk about collaboration, trust, self-esteem, emotions and feelings.
'I believe that slowness is an act of resistance, not because slowness is good in itself but because of all that it makes room for, the things that don't get measured and can't be bought'. (*)
Groups are very powerful bodies and each of us in the group plays a role in contributing to the group's ability to work together. Groups have their own character, moods, ways of behaving, and self-generated rules that influence the individual members. This session will consider how we work together in groups, we'll look at group-process and group-dynamics. This is a residential weekend for year-long course members only..
February's pre-workshop reflection question
Suggested resources: Is everybody happy? Tools for effective group work
Rhizome guide to Consensus Decision-making
Seeds for Change consensus information
Rhizome guide to Active Listening
Arnold Mindell on Democracy and World Work (audio + still images)
People's History Museum (in Manchester)
February's Summary of the weekend
(*) Quote from author, activist Rebecca Solnit
'Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue.' (*)
Nonviolent direct action (NVDA) targets property, infrastructure or groups or person(s) deemed to be doing harm, or perpetuating a system of injustice. It may mean breaking the law and risking arrest, but as well it may not. Discerning what role in the action is right for you is an important part of the process. In this workshop we talked about these questions as well as
January's pre-workshop reflection questions
Suggested resources: Don't just sit there! Exploring direct action
G8 can you hear us? - BBC4 'documentary' exploring the diferent roles social change activists tak, much like we tried to do with our fishbowl exericise we worked as a group to taken on different personalities involved in making change happen. The BBC4 trailer says: 'A film about three very different protesters who headed to Gleneagles in 2005 to persuade the gathered world leaders to take steps to help save the planet from destruction.'
The World Against Apartheid: have you heard from Johannesburg? (video about 1 hour)
Happy Australia Day 2012 - (video, about 4 minutes), continuing our conversation about the media and activism
Stick it to the man: How the web spurs political change (a bit of a fluffy but interesting article)
Starhawk's Webs of power -- good on diversity of tactics in the protest movement
Philippe Duhamel's blog on New Tactics
War Resisters League, Handbook for Nonviolent Action
CT UP New York’s Manual for Civil Disobedience
Seeds for Change's briefing on affinity grous
hell no, we won't glow: nonviolent occupation of a nuclear power site, Seabrook April 1977 by Sharon Crown
Preparing for Nonviolent Direct Action by Howard Clark, Sheryl Crown, Angela McKee and Hugh MacPherson (1984). A small book written for and by activists in the 1980s British nuclear disarmament movement, placing nonviolent direct action in a wider strategic framework, urging a small group approach to organizing nvda, describing a range of tools and exercises, and offering short success stories. Fanny Tribble’s cartoons provide a humorous commentary on the text.
(*) Quote from Martin Luther King Jr's 1963 Letter from a Birmingham Jail
This session looked at how the strategic and creative use of tactics add up to effective campaigning, and how all our contributions add up to make change.
'I feel enthusiastic about what I've learnt about campaigning tools and am inspired to pick up with a group I've pulled back from.' -- December workshop participant
December's pre-workshop reflection question
Think of campaigns you've been part of, what has been the overall goal of the campaign? What actions have you taken to reach those goals? How do you know your actions are effective? How have you grown and changed through these campaigning experiences?
Suggested resources: Campaigners do it together! How we make change
'Democracy to the right, WTO to the left' banner as Hannah described when she gave the example of the Smart-eme story-telling framework for strategy.
Turning the Tide's page of campaign strategy planning tools. Here you'll find guidance notes for several of the tools mentioned at the workshop such as SWOT/BEEM, Force Field Analysis, Pillars of Power, and many more.Here is further information about NAOMIE .
As mentioned in the additional strategy tools session near the end of the day: article describing the social change framework of the Living Revolution (1. cultural preparation, 2. organisation + movement-building, 3. confrontation, 4. mass economic and political non-cooperation, 5. new/parallel/alternative instituions), the definition of backcasting a campaign vision tool.
Common Cause: The case for working with our cultural values (very long, but valuable report)
Indymedia - If you you haven't ever read 'Indymedia' news, please discover this campaigning tool. Be the media.
Interview with Counterpower Author Tim Gee (video, about 5m)
McLibel (video, about 84min)
Roots to Resistance (website about arts + activism campaign)
Ten Tactics - From the Tactical Technology Collective video, further information, tools and advice from rights campaigns around the world
The Bank of Ideas - (public repossession of bankrupted bank now community space)
The Ruckus Society (website with tools)
The Village Green (video, about 9min)
How does change happen? What role have you played in change? What do you need to help you make change?
In this training, the facilitation team asked people to think about how change happens, and what role do you usually play in making change happen. We looked at successful campaigns to grain inspiration for today's challenges.
Handouts given on the day (and archived below) include: How change happens (part 1 & 2), Noticings, Break the rules: how ground rules can hurt us, The Great Turning, The 100th Monkey; a participant has also archived below is a summary of the day's activities written up by a participant.
A few words about empowered learning
This is a course which aims to take participants on a deep transformational learning journey. We strive to create the conditions and opportunities for you to challenge your self-limiting beliefs and discover your inner power. We aim to build a safe environment which nurtures 'empowered learning' by which we mean awareness of your needs and taking personal responsibility to find ways to meet those needs, while not interfering or creating obstacles for others' learning'. To this end, we offer you a d-i-y guide to help you understand more about your learning intelligences.
The notion of 'learning intelligences' can also be broadly interpreted to mean the way we process and tend to present information to others. The greater our awareness about our preferences and the ways we deal with information, the easier it may be for us to develop other areas and recognise different preferences in others. If you have time for this learning intelligences assessment, it may help you to become more aware about yourself and others, and potentially improve your ability to work effectively in, and with groups.
Defend life: what does a forest mean to local people?(short animation)
What is power? How do you grow it? How do you connect with and unblock your own?
In Playing with power 1: understanding The System we explored our understanding of different types of power and disempowerment. We worked on cultivating and nurturing ourselves and skills and ways of growing the transformative power of nonviolence to emerge.
A few of the questions we asked ourselves were --
October workshop suggested resouces include articles, a couple of websites and hand-outs and documents (below) from the actual day. These are Taster sheet on power, 2 case studies about nonviolent power, patterns of responding to violence, Arnold Mindell's 4 types of rank and learning zones.We also offer a summary of October's workshop written by one of the participants.
Class Matters - a website, a book, and more about working across the class divide
Dear Diary - Over 3 years from 30 June 2001 to 30 June 2004, Alana Jelinek's 'Dear Diary' recorded day to day experiences of racism - as observer or bystander, as a victim of racism and as a racist.
Mork versus the KKK (video, about 7 min)
24 September 2011 Nonviolence, a dangerous idea
Think about everyday acts and practices that you observe and to ask yourself, 'Is that violent or is that nonviolent? What are the characteristics or qualities of violent and nonviolent acts?'
September workshop hand-outs and documents (below) include: September Summary, Active Listening, Transforming us versus them thinking, De-escalating violence, Nonviolence taster, and What is violence, what is nonviolence (Galtung), Myth of redemeptive violence.
We also welcome resource suggestions including inspiring case studies recording and sharing the good news of nonviolence. See our case studies section for more.
To view the documents in the archive you will need a copy of Adobe® Reader®. If you don't have a copy or if you have an old copy which you would like to update, go to the Adobe website where you can download it for free.