The ability to evolve is necessary to the work of any social movement, and this ability rests both in paying attention in the present and in knowing our history.
Each generation has a chance to make things different, better, more just. But this has never happened without struggle. When engaged in struggle or conflict we face two choices – fight or flight. If we decide to fight, we once again face two choices – we can fight violently or we can choose nonviolence.
This section of the website serves as a sort of archive of the movements that I have been a part of. You will find action agreements, direct action manuals, pictures, articles, reflections, and more; some organized by topic, some by mobilization, and in some in multiple places where it makes sense.
Violence & Nonviolence
Questions about violence and nonviolence are HISTORICAL and will always create a debate in direct action movements because there are a variety of perspectives and experiences. Some will just never agree; what one may consider violent another may not. What might be violent in one situation may not be considered violent in another situations. Much of the problem that I see is when one group tries to impose their belief, will, and strategy on another. Instead of arguing, I have been focusing on learning how to develop trust and respectful relationships through building agreements and accountability when all the groups participating in an action are not in alignment on strategy and tactics. Below are some examples of action agreements that have been used over the years at various mobilizations to allow groups with diverse opinions to work together.
- Solidarity in Practice, Sample Action Agreements, developed in 2001 between labor, black bloc and religious activists.
- Nonviolence Agreements, from the True Security Cluster at the RNC in NY, 2004
- Proposal for Action Agreements
Direct Action Manuals
- Direct Action Handbook, from Luxembourg 2006 (in English)
- Direct Action Campaign Organizing Manual, from the RANT Collective
- Handbook for Nonviolent Campaigns, War Resistors League International, excellent online manual
- Nonviolent Action Handbook by Sanderson Beck
- Ruckus Action Planning Manual,known for their action camps and visibility action, here are some good how to’s
- SOAW Handbook for Nonviolent Action organized and comprehensive, lots of good stuff
Manuals from Past Mobilizations and Movements
- 1999 WTO Seattle Mass Nonviolent Direct Action Handbook
- ACT UP Civil Disobedience Index
- Direct Action Handbook from the 2004 RNC in NY, produced by the RANT Collective
- Shut Down the CIA from the 1987 Mobilization for Justice in Central America and Southern Africa
- Pledge of Resistance 1986 Handbook
- Pledge of Resistance Manual from Chicago from the 1980’s movement against US War in Central America (this is a large file, allow ample time to download
- Direct Action Handbook – Edited by Luke Hauser, 2003
- Diablo Canyon 1981 Handbook
- Livermore 1982 Handbook
- International Day 1983 Handbook
Also in this section…
- Abbie Hoffman Presente! Stories and artifacts from my work with Abbie Hoffman
- The Global Justice Movement, reflections, debriefs, pictures, and more from a variety of large global justice mobilizations
- Common Ground Relief, post-Hurricane mutual-aid in New Orleans
- Labor Organizing: Fighting for Justice!
- Camp Casey and the Bring Them Home Now Tour
- Analysis & Articles
- Photos, Slideshows, and Videos