Drawing on specific aspects of the readings from this module, offer your own view on this question: Will political nonviolence remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past? Why or why not?

Political nonviolence has been an effective means of achieving social and political change throughout history. However, the question of whether it will remain effective in the future is complex and multifaceted. In this response, I draw on the readings from Nepstad to offer my own perspective.

Firstly, one of the main challenges facing political nonviolence in the future is the changing nature of conflicts. As Nepstad notes, contemporary conflicts are often characterized by a lack of clear lines between state and non-state actors, the use of new technologies, and the globalization of political and economic systems. In this context, it may be difficult for political nonviolent movements to effectively challenge oppressive structures and policies. Moreover, as the complexity of conflicts increases, nonviolent movements may find it challenging to mobilize and sustain the necessary resources and support.

Secondly, the effectiveness of political nonviolence in the future may also depend on the willingness of states and other actors to engage in meaningful dialogue and negotiation with nonviolent movements. As Nepstad highlights, many governments and other actors are often resistant to engaging with nonviolent movements and may instead use repression and violence to suppress them. In the future, as global power dynamics continue to shift, it is possible that authoritarian regimes may become more common, making it even harder for nonviolent movements to achieve their goals.

However, despite these challenges, I believe that political nonviolence will remain effective in the future. One reason for this is that nonviolent movements are often able to mobilize widespread public support, including from groups who may not have previously been politically engaged. This support can help to pressure governments and other actors to engage in dialogue and negotiation that can also make it more difficult for them to use violence to suppress nonviolent movements.

Another reason for the continued effectiveness of political nonviolence is the role of social media and other digital technologies in mobilizing and sustaining nonviolent movements. As Nepstad notes, these technologies have enabled nonviolent movements to overcome barriers of distance, language, and culture, and have also made it easier to coordinate and communicate with supporters. Moreover, these technologies have enabled nonviolent movements to document and share evidence of state violence and repression, which can increase public awareness and pressure on governments to respond.

In conclusion, while the effectiveness of political nonviolence in the future is uncertain, I believe that it will remain an important tool for achieving social and political change. However, as conflicts become more complex and the global political landscape shifts, nonviolent movements will need to be adaptable, innovative, and strategic in order to overcome the challenges they will face.

The success of political nonviolence in the past has been well documented, as evidenced by scholars like Sharon Erickson Nepstad and Erica Chenoweth. Their studies demonstrate that nonviolent movements have achieved remarkable successes compared to violent uprisings. However, assessing whether nonviolence will remain effective as political conflicts progress is essential. In this essay, political nonviolence has achieved remarkable success; however, its long-term viability will depend on its capacity to adapt and address new challenges as they present themselves. Nepstad delves deeply into nonviolent movements in her book Nonviolent Revolutions, outlining the key factors responsible for their relative success. Nepstad (Chapter 1) discusses how nonviolent revolutions typically rely on mass mobilization, unity, loyalty shifts, and strategic planning (Nepstad, Ch.1). Nepstad further elaborates on these factors in Chapter 8, stressing the significance of defections within opposition parties and international support (Nepstad, Ch. 8). Nepstad’s article “Mutiny and Nonviolence in the Arab Spring” delves deep into this period in history by showing how these crucial components contributed to nonviolent revolutions taking place across Tunisia and Egypt.

Chenoweth’s essay “The Future of Nonviolent Resistance” suggests that nonviolent movements will likely face numerous difficulties as they evolve (Chenoweth, p.3). Nonviolent movements are increasingly faced with state repression, fragmentation, and the rise of illiberal democracies. Furthermore, the rapid advancements of technology and the digital age present new obstacles for nonviolent movements as states can now employ sophisticated surveillance, control, and censorship tools (Chenoweth, p.7). Though these challenges may appear daunting, we should always maintain hope and remain optimistic about the potential of political nonviolence in the future. Our hope and optimism about political nonviolence will endure as long as we learn and adapt from our mistakes. First, Nepstad and Chenoweth emphasize the potential of nonviolent movements to adapt and innovate. Second, Nepstad emphasizes tactical innovation within these movements, such as humor to disarm repression (Nepstad, Ch.1). Furthermore, Chenoweth points out that technology can be an ally in these endeavors, with digital platforms facilitating better coordination, communication, and information dissemination for increased nonviolent resistance (Chenoweth, p.7).

In conclusion, political nonviolence’s success depends on its capacity to adapt and address emerging challenges. Nonviolent movements can remain successful despite a shifting political landscape by staying united, encouraging loyalty shifts, engaging in strategic planning, and employing innovative tactics. Nepstad and Chenoweth’s works demonstrate how nonviolent resistance has the potential to bring about significant transformation. With an appropriate strategy, nonviolent movements will remain effective regardless of future environmental changes.

What is nonviolence? It is a method to bring about a change in the political or social realm and doing it in a peaceful manner. It is the rejection of violence using a peaceful tactics. Gandhi and Dr King both were two very influential figures that promoted and believed in nonviolence. As with any fight there will be victories as well as defeats. Some victories include Dr Kings fight for civil rights, Cesar Chavez for better treatment for Mexican workers in California, The Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia in overthrowing a communist government and The East Germany Revolution which took down a communist regime. On the other hand, some defeats were, Tiananman Square Democracy struggle in China, Kenya’s struggle against Daniel arap Moi dictatorship. Nonviolence has a better chance in succeeding in a democratic regime. Authoritarian regimes are more incline to neutralize their opponents at any cost.

I do think political nonviolence will remain effective in the future as it has been in the past. There will always be individuals that believe in the movement. As bad as the world may seem there are plenty of morally upright individuals that do not believe in violence. We have seen a profound increase in nonviolent movement between 2000-2019. More people look to nonviolence as a successful means in accomplishing a change. Most are trying to avoid conflicts because of humanitarian repercussions “in the postwar era, wider segments of society have come to value and expect fairness, the protection of human rights, and the avoidance of needless violence. This normative shift may have heightened popular interest in civil resistance as a way to advocate for human rights”. (Chenoweth, pg. 72)

With the help of the internet more people can understand and studying the movement also witnessing other countries accomplish victory. This may give hope to those who were hopeless, inspiration to fight for their civil rights or a regime change. Even though nonviolence is more successful in democratic regimes, and there is a turn in many nations political environment who are digressing from democracy to Authoritarian leadership, I do believe that there will still be nonviolent movements. 2020 showed a decline in protest because of the virus which enable many to change policies that are oppressive. But the break may be a blessing in disguise as in this break gave activist time to reevaluate the environment and strategically come back more powerful. Activist may have sympathy over issues because of the virus and the trauma people endured. “The ongoing U.S. protests against racism and police violence are tied to the fact that African Americans have perished from coronavirus at much higher rates than whites—among other persistent social, political, and economic inequalities. Because the pandemic has already affected the lives of billions of people worldwide, these messages are likely to resonate with a broader base now than they did before the crisis.” (Chenoweth, pg. 83) Another reason I believe it will still be effective is that it is because of oppression why it started in the first place so once there is oppression there will always be protest.

After reading the analysis of Nepstad and Chenoweth in this weeks readings, I think that if nonviolent political movements are to continue, they need some new unique ideas. Chenoweth lays out in her article things that have changed, both on the movement side and the environments in which these movements are taking place, that have caused the decline of effective political nonviolence since 2010. A few examples of these are the heavy reliance on mass demonstrations, solely relying on digital organizing or publicizing, or governments being more prepared and able to adapt quicker to these movements. (Chenoweth, 78).  Of course, if a group is working to create a nonviolent movement, they can’t do much to change the environment that the government has created –  a grassroots group cannot change the fact that the US has retreated from the international scene, away from its role as global superpower. (Chenoweth, 76). They can however employ new tactics that will surprise their adversaries, such as using alternate methods for showing their frustration that will then be coupled with mass demonstrations, publicizing away from the high levels of surveillance that comes with social media, and staying away from violent fringes of their ideologies that could create a bad name for their nonviolent movement. (Chenoweth, 79). In Nepstads article “Mutiny and Nonviolence in the Arab Spring”, she claims that nonviolence groups are 46 times more likely to succeed if they can convince the military or law enforcement to defect, making it a critical factor in determining failure or success. (Nepstad, 337). She proves this point by citing three cases of the Arab Spring, political revolts in Egypt, Bahrain, and Syria, and explains the differing cases of police loyalty and how that affected the outcome of their movements, as well as why the police chose either side. (Nepstad, 344). If a political movement in the future used this evidence and found a way to sway the loyalty of the military or law enforcement, it would help the movement be more successful. Nepstad also explains two types of nonviolent movements, the Gandhian model and the electoral model. The Gandhian model includes six ways citizens can withdraw support to the regime so that it will eventually collapse and have no choice but to change. The electoral approach is based on voter participation, and election security and honesty.  (Nepstad, chapter 1). I think that the electoral approach will become more influential that the Gandhian model in the future for two reasons; The first reason is because Gandhian is studied and worshipped as one of the most influential – or the most – nonviolent leaders in the world. Many people and governments are aware of tactics he used which faces the problem about of not surprising the government/government adapting to the movements. The second reason is because the electoral approach has already begun to infiltrate strong democracies (the US presidential elections, or the Brexit vote for example). Both loosely followed the steps of an electoral nonviolent movement.

Political nonviolent movements have the potential to remain effective in the future if groups continue to find new methods for dissenting, moving away from recent trends like social media, mass demonstrations, violent fringes, and the Gandhian model. Coupled with the ability to make law enforcement defect from the regime, these movements have high chances of success.

The question of whether political violence will continue to remain effective in the future is hard to determine but from research, it has been shown to have become less effective in producing regime change in the most recent years, although more effective than means of violent uprisings. The main issue with this question is whether we are excluding violent revolutions from the discussion. Violent campaigns have been more unsuccessful than non-violent campaigns, making non-violent campaigns seem more effective overall, but even given the success compared to violent campaigns, non-violent campaigns within themselves are failing to succeed in the ways necessary to bring about successful regime change and democratization. The first main reason for this decline in effectiveness is the pure size of modern campaigns. Chenoweth explains this in her article, stating that, “in the 1980s, the average nonviolent campaign involved about 2 percent of the population in the country where it was underway. In the 1990s, the average campaign included a staggering 2.7 percent of the population. But since 2010, the average peak participation has been only 1.3 percent, continuing a decline that began in the 2000s. This is a crucial change. A mass uprising is more likely to succeed when it includes a larger proportion and a more diverse cross-section of a nation’s population.” (Chenoweth,78) This decrease in campaign participation is a major issue in the declining effectiveness of non-violent revolutions. You must have a dramatic mass movement to bring about regime change. Not only with the decrease in participation, but the type of participation that gained mass movements true progress in the past was also the technique used, which has not been developed or used as much in more modern instances. Mass movements such as general strikes and stay-at-homes, which can disrupt an economy dramatically, are not as prominent today as just general street protests, which last a day or two at most.  Along with the day protests, we have seen a spike in civil-resistance movements becoming violent, reversing the progress the campaign has made. We can see this example here in the US with the January 6th incident. What was supposed to remain non-violent swiftly turned into an anarchic, chaotic, disastrous scene, eradicating any social progress that may have actually occurred, if any. Chenoweth gives a statistic, “From the 1970s until 2010, the share of nonviolent movements with violent flanks remained between 30 and 35 percent. In 2010–19, it climbed to more than half.” (Chenoweth, 79) This increase in non-violent campaigns turning to incite violence has only repressed their progress and demeaned their causes. This decline in effectiveness has everything to do with the newly adopted nature of non-violent campaigns, versus the organization and tactics of historically successful campaigns. COVID-19 putting even more pressure on the nature, administration, participation, organization, and execution platforms available to progress non-violent campaigns.

Given this decline in non-violent campaigns bringing about change in more contemporary times, we can see certain tactics being employed internationally to attempt to de-escalate abuses of power, which still seems ineffective in certain cases. We can see this with the current war in Ukraine. The international sanctions and moral pressures from the international community have only achieved so much if anything. Although, not necessarily a revolution, I feel the war has brought about faults in Russia’s autocratic nature, Putin’s power abuses, and the violent campaigns that have been made against Ukraine. To side with Chenoweth’s finding cited in Nepstad’s Preface, stating that internationally imposed sanctions mostly harm the success of non-violent campaigns but nearly double the winning in violent campaigns. (Nepstad, International Support and Sanctions) This finding may help to explain why violent wars, international war funding, and imposing economic sanctions will be more successful in the future in bringing about regime change and deterring destructive politically abused power. It is only a matter of time before the truth will be told of whether the violence which has incited another territorial war in Ukraine will succeed with pure hard power or if non-violent civil disobedience, sanctions, and international pressures will be the way to bring about regime change and dissolve autocratic regimes across the world.

The revolutionary potential of nonviolence has worked throughout History, so I consider it will be effective in the future as it has been in the past. Although it methodologically originated with Mahatma Gandhi in 1919, he was profoundly influenced by Leon Tolstoy initially through his book “The Reign of God is in You” in 1894 (which also influenced Martin Luther King). King was influenced by Henry David Thoreau and his essay “Civil Disobedience” in 1848. Thus the roots of this doctrine are located long back, which is why I consider it will succeed forward. Several examples of its efficacy include:

The Philippines’ “bloodless” revolution in 1986 against Dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
The fall of the Eastern Germany regime of Erich Honecker in 1989.
The removal of Augusto Pinochet in Chile in 1990.
The main factors for the beginning of the struggle were national grievances against the state, removal of the support of the elites to the government; people angered enough with the regime’s injustice and its incapacity of solving social and economic problems, united opposition in a rebellion ideology, mobilization of involved organizations like religious groups, labor unions, and university clubs in offering support, (finances, communications, and recruitment), coordination and direction (Nepstad, p. 6-7).

This movement tends to succeed in political transformation (Nepstad, p. xiv) through different methods of challenging the authoritarian regime (Nepstad, p. 124-125), such as non-cooperation, protests, demonstrations, mass strikes, boycotts and the subversion of the loyalty of government supporters, which sometimes results in mutinies by the police and military forces. The military and police forces constitute a significant factor in the success or failure of the movement since they perceive the strength or decline of the dictatorship by the support or rejection of the international community, by the degree of their own financial problems or by political benefits. they receive from the regime (Nepstad, p. 337-338). There are other influential factors such as the degree of repression. Authoritarian leaders use methods to maintain control such as state brutality. They also resort to public outrage by criminalizing the opposition. However, many times what can mean a reason to fight can strengthen the dictator. Measures such as international sanctions against a regime can sometimes favor the movement, other times they generate support for the dictator, because it is perceived as a foreign interference in the sovereignty of the country and this ultimately harms the non-violent movement (Nepstad, p. 18).

On the other hand, civil resistance can be manifested by other means, such as mass emigration. In East Germany, mass emigration led to a shortage of factory workers, health care providers, transport operators, and communication specialists. Leaving the country is a means of demonstrating the level of disagreement, however, this is not such an effective measure (Nepstad, p. 126-129).

Even in the near past, as in 2019, several nonviolent movements provoked the fallings from the power of dictators like Omar al-Bashir in Occidental Sudan, Abdelaziz Bouteflika in Algeria, and the governor of Puerto Rico. Similar occurred in Lebanon, Iraq, and Bolivia (Chenoweth, p. 69). In the future, increasing in nonviolent movements is expected due to its widespread perception (thanks to Internet expansion and overpassing government control of the information) as a legitimate and successful method for creating change (Chenoweth, p. 71-72). Society is increasingly concerned and focused on protecting human rights, fairness, and avoidance of needless violence. Despite the influence of the pandemic in the shunt-down of nonviolent groups in several countries (like the United States), these groups are stocktaking, regrouping, and planning for the next phase of protracted struggles for democracy and rights, which arose again with the last mass protests (Chenoweth, p. 80). Thus, the movement will not stop in the near future.

For background, a campaign is said to be effective if it achieves regime change. This definition is adapted to move into empirical discussion and create a consistent standard. According to the figures shown in “The Future of Nonviolent Resistance” trends suggest nonviolence will not be as effective as it was in the past. Though relative to the success rate of violent campaigns, it is still strong as ever. The relative data point is actually more crucial than meets the eye. Any theory as to why the success rate of nonviolence campaigns have fallen also has to explain the fall in the success rate of violent campaigns. Therefore, the theory that nonviolence has already worked where it can work and that governments have adjusted to nonviolent movements face an uphill battle. It is likely attempts at regime change in general have already worked where it can and governments, perhaps through a change in environment, are more equipped to deal with any type of regime change attempt. They can use modern surveillance against both violent and nonviolent campaigns. I am not sure how movements will be able to convince the military to join their side, if the current regime is monitoring all main channels of communication. It can also be from the side of the movement, technology changing our lives may perpetuate a bias toward stability. People can feel they do enough via slacktivism, potential recruits are not as experienced in the physical realm as before, and internet circles can provide the populace with a sort of escapism. Chenoweth’s point about movements’ tendency to over-rely on mass demonstrations while neglecting other techniques—such as general strikes and mass civil disobedience—that can more forcefully disrupt a regime’s stability is pretty spot on. However, it might serve a better purpose as a way to make nonviolent movements more effective rather than explain the fall in the success rate. A case made in the reading was that COVID could impact the success and future of nonviolence as more people take a step back and experiment with new practices surrounding the method. Maybe worker non-cooperation seen during the crisis could bring in vital power to them as stated by the author, or the complete opposite happens and other actors depose them of power because they have been made aware of a mechanism that could bring unpreferable consequences. This is not just restricted to the narrative of the workers vs owners, parents could have come to some conclusions on teacher unions depending on their actions during the crisis. Customers aren’t really happy about not getting their services. Overall, I see nonviolence being less effective in absolute terms but still pretty effective relatively.

In my view, political nonviolence will continue to be effective in the future, but its effectiveness may vary depending on specific contexts and circumstances. This is because its track record of success makes nonviolence likely to remain effective. In her examination of non-violent movements ranging from the year nineteen hundred up until two thousand and six (2006), Erica Chenoweth determined that such endeavours had a higher likelihood for success than those involving violence specifically, double the chance (Nepstad 342). Also, peaceful movements had a better chance of bringing about transitions towards democracy and accomplishing lasting transformations. The implication is that nonviolent resistance inherently offers certain advantages over violent resistance.

Various elements can affect how effective nonviolence is. Sharon Erickson Nepstad argues in her study of the Arab Spring that whether nonviolent movements succeed depends largely upon military defections or loyalty. While military defections were instrumental in ousting Mubarak from power in Egypt, they stayed true to their loyalty towards Assad’s government and aided them by quelling non-violent movements within Syria (Hinnebusch et al., 477). The absence of a complete triumph for Bahrain’s peaceful protest could be linked with internal divisions among its armed forces. How effective nonviolence is may be influenced by key actors attitudes and actions, specifically those in the military.

The amount of repression that a movement faces might affect how successful its nonviolent methods are. Syria was studied by Nepstad, who found that if non-violent movements are brutally oppressed by regimes like Assad’s, then they may end up turning violent instead (Nepstad 340). This shift in tactics can actually harm their goals rather than help them achieve success. Nonviolent resistance’s effectiveness might depend on how much oppression there is and what techniques are used by those in power to stifle disagreement.

The efficacy of political nonviolence may be influenced in the future due to changes in power dynamics and evolving political conflicts. The effectiveness of nonviolent resistance movements could be maintained through strategy and tactic adaptation, according to an article written by Erica Chenoweth regarding their future amidst rising state repression and technology. Social media, along with other innovative methods, can be used to effectively mobilise and sustain nonviolent resistance movements.

In her article about the future of nonviolent resistance, Erica Chenoweth emphasises that it requires adaptability when dealing with changing political conflicts and power dynamics. Technological progress and government oppression pose unique tests as well as chances for nonviolent resistance movements in today’s world. Social media usage, along with digital organising and other innovative methods, are effective strategies to mobilise and sustain nonviolent resistance movements in the future.

Through social media platforms and technological advancements, political nonviolence can be made more effective. The power of social media platforms lies in their ability to facilitate communication as well as coordination and mobilisation efforts. Information dissemination and campaign organisation on a large scale are made possible by these tools, which are used by activists (Groshek et al. 345). The use of social media enables nonviolent resistance movements to quickly disseminate messages and visuals globally in order to generate support. Mobilisation and coordination of protests were significantly aided by social media during the Arab Spring. Additionally, it raised global awareness about these movements.

I believe that as we move towards the future that non-violence can still be a viable form of influencing the government and population at large to bring about change. With the example of the United States and being marked by a rise in gun violence over the last two decades I think the sentiment towards using violence as a means of change is highly frowned upon because of the negative actions that have affected the entire perception of how it can be used. Therefore, we turn back to non-violence, this can be seen as thousands of students in Tennessee gathered at the capitol and others across the country did the same in solidarity.

Furthermore, with the same example in mind, the United States is at a unique position with maintaining the right to bear arms, it makes it very hard to maintain an attitude of non-violence as Nepstad described in chapter 8 but I think could also be overcome with religious support. From my understanding of what Nepstad wrote in chapter 8 regarding what the deciding factors are, the structural implications in effect for the country as well as the loyalty/mutiny of security forces. With structural forces in mind as I said the right to bear arms is a large part of why non-violence must be the answer, without it there would most likely be civil war or at the very least rebellion ending in massacre. The security forces in power such as the police and military have historically been loyal to the state and you’d be hard pressed to find a large group that would be willing to directly disobey and mutinies against state orders.

That being said, it would take careful strategic planning to bring about a strong movement as well as cooperation from cultural and political leaders with the same goals and ideology. The government now is also aware of the situation and any digital attempts to organize are often flagged by the CIA or FBI and out down. But in regards to the causes of revolution outlined in Chapter 1 of Nepstad’s book, it seems that the majority of the factors are there.

The United States is not the only example as we can see across Europe that work strikes are taking place in an attempt to change the system. With the most evident case being in France where largely non-violent demonstrations are taking place. While the president refuses to listen to the people, in my opinion it is still effective as it has gained worldwide recognition and further support. To my knowledge the entire security force has not stepped down but there has been examples of the police stepping down in solidarity.

If the same were to happen in the US I believe we would be able to see a massive turn of events and shift in power. And the possibility of a non-violent revolution still remains the most plausible in terms of being agreed upon by a unified populous.

In “Mutiny and Nonviolence in the Arab Spring,” Nepstad argues that the effectiveness of political nonviolence depends on several contextual factors, including the type of regime, the level of repression, the availability of resources and allies, and the resilience of the movement. These factors make it difficult to predict whether political nonviolence will be as effective in the future as it has been in the past.

One of the factors highlighted by Nepstad is the type of regime faced by the pacifist movements. Nonviolent resistance was most effective against authoritarian regimes that lacked popular support and legitimacy. However, peace movements are struggling to win meaningful victories against entrenched authoritarian regimes with significant popular support, such as China and Russia. Another important factor is the level of repression. Repressive regimes often use violence and other means of intimidation to repress peaceful movements. In such cases, nonviolent resistance can be difficult and risky, making it less effective. Peace movements can be more successful in less repressive regimes, where the state is more willing to negotiate and compromise.

The availability of resources and allies is also an important factor. Peace movements need strong public support, including allies in the media, civil society and the international community. However, the availability of these resources and allies can be unpredictable, and peace movements can struggle to sustain long-term support. Finally, the resilience of the movement is essential for the success of political nonviolence. Peace movements must maintain a high level of internal cohesion and organization, and the ability to adapt to changing circumstances. They must be able to adapt their tactics, including protest methods, to changing circumstances.

In conclusion Nepstad’s article suggests that the future effectiveness of political nonviolence will depend on the ability of peace movements to deal with these contextual factors and adapt to new challenges. Although nonviolence has been successful in the past, there is no guarantee that it will continue to be as effective in the future. However, as Nepstad notes, peace movements can increase their chances of success by building strong networks of allies and maintaining high levels of resilience and adaptability.

This question ultimately comes down to it being situational because different types of structural revolutions may require violence while other Revolutions will require non violent actions as a whole. I’ll use America as an example because in a way this country is in need of a massive revolution in terms of systematic change. While I don’t believe we need a violent revolution at all, I believe this country is in dire need of a peaceful revolution, and this isn’t just from the current POTUS in office. This is from the complete two party system as a whole. So using the US two party as a whole as a need for revolution, I have to say yes that a nonviolent revolution would actually work just like past history, but it will definitely be a lot harder.

When taking current situations into context and making the realization that a nonviolent revolution in today’s day and age would be harder than past situations. With my United States two party system revolution example, you have to look at the facts that everytime an opposition such as a third party gains some momentum, the two main parties end up banding together and destroying ther third parties chances at ever gaining any traction in the political primaries. So where does that leave us in terms of how a nonviolent revolution would succeed in modern day America? Taking a page out of Ghandi’s stratregy and from this weeks reading, It is quoted as saying “Refusing to use their skills to promote and sustain government activities.”. Theoretically if the United States decided to revolt from the two party system as a whole we would have to drain every single main party affiliated leaders out of office, and by doing that we would have to completely tank the economy so the elites that are paying off the leaders in power wouldn’t be able to keep them in power if they are struggling financially. America is such a complex situation politically where one has to argue that this wouldn’t even be possible in the first place because of the Media grab that corporate America has on half of the nation.

Skipping forward to a more technologically advanced society one I don’t believe any form of Revolution will be possible because of the amount control that the elites will have on society by that point where it would be arguably impossible to start any revolution in the first place. How do you start a revolution if your citizens are being monitored by the govrernment with every move? It’s even debatable that it would be impossible to start as revolution in todays day and age because the current government already knows our every move because of our cell phones. So to the question being asked, do i believe that its possible to have a nonviolent revolution in the future? No I don’t with technology advancing the way it is.

Let’s begin by defining what nonviolent action means, according to Chenoweth, “nonviolent resistance is a method of struggle in which unarmed people confront an adversary by using collective action – including protests, demonstrations, strikes, and noncooperation – to build power and achieve political goals” (Chenoweth, 70).

I cannot consciously claim that nonviolent antigovernmental protests do not work as I would consider that to be a false statement. History has demonstrated time and time again that when masses unite as a front, great change can be achieved but, the world in 2020 – when COVID hit – came to halt. The demonstrations masses did to protest certain actions or people in power came to an indefinite halt that to this day, 3 years later, I cannot fully say we’re back to the pre-COVID country we once were. That is not to overlook the mass movements the United States has experienced in the more recent past including movements mobilizing for racial justice, immigration justice, gun control, women’s rights, climate control, LGBTQ+ rights, and former Presidents’ impeachments.

Solely based on statistics, violent demonstrations have significantly declined since the 1970s, contrary to nonviolent demonstrations which have grown much more common. “… from 2010 to 2019 … this period saw not only the most nonviolent resistance recorded since 1900, but the launch of no fewer than 96 nonviolent maximalist campaigns” (Chenoweth, 71) a number much higher than previous revolutionary eruptions in a single decade. This increase in nonviolent action is due to many factors but one I personally consider to be one, if not the most, important one is the societal normative shift in what is and isn’t acceptable in present day. In today’s society, a lot of individuals tend to be a lot more self-conscious about what and how they do and say things, we tend to be a lot more receptive and caring toward others – precisely because of what we’ve seen violence does in the past. Because people already know the reality of war, a lot of us tend to deal with unjust actions in a nonviolent manner to avoid violent outbursts which can escalate very quickly.

Some say that nonviolent resistance is both a failure and a success, I personally lean more toward the fact that it is a success rather than a failure. Let me elaborate why, the successful aspect many consider us of nonviolent resistance is that very few are turning toward armed action, therefore violent behavior automatically declining. The failure aspect is because some claim that many injustices remain – I don’t disagree with the fact that as a collective we still have a lot of injustices, just for an example’s sake, take immigration and the inhumane way many are treated, but, historically, nonviolence has always achieved more than violent outbursts so the ideal that violence would cause for more action in favor of the protestors is illogical to me.

Although it will become more difficult and the people will need to come together to strategize and plan nonviolent revolutionary acts, it will be difficult because our nation and its international relationships continue to exercise their ability to remove, suppress and over through the power of the people. This concern is not only geared toward Americans but other countries and its citizens as well. Specifically, our nation has used forms of political agendas, scenarios to oppress basic freedoms and principals that are in our Constitution.  Respectively, the power and freedom of speech has now evolved to technology and can be heard and can influence others across the world. Moreover, governments from America, China Austria, and many other nation’s people have used the power of technology to voice their ideologies on political issues and have shadow banned and restricted, as they were considered dangerous. In recent news, many social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter have focused on silencing people and groups who are deemed a threat to political agenda and strategies. Ultimately, these acts empower the government and removes the purpose of the government which is to provide a service to the people.  Politically speaking, remove and suppressing the basic right of freedom of speech can be dangerous line to cross because silencing the people removes the Democracy of our nation and instills tyranny.  Tragically, the pandemic, 9/11, ISIS have all played a huge role in slowly invading and suppressing civil rights of Americans. The pandemic alone was able to restrict freedoms such as gathering in religious unions and overall, legitimately banning people from coming together in masses to voice their concerns to the government. Sadly, many individuals lost their lives but many citizens loss their basic civil rights during COVID- 19. I couldn’t agree with Erica Chenoweth enough when she said, “a host of governments across the world have pushed forward divisive policies that range from the suspension of free speech to controversial judicial appointments to bank on immigrant or refugee admissions” (Chenoweth 70).

Ideally, and in the past, leaders like Ghandi and Martin Luther King Jr., have utilized and empowered nonviolence resistance to confront adversaries by using collective action like protests, demonstrations, strikes, and noncooperation for purposes of building power to achieve political goals but in recent scenarios this has not been the case (e.g. Capitol invasion, January 6). However, it seems has though given our current situation, I believe the more freedom is suppressed the more people will rebel against the government because as it is written, all men were created equal with the self – evident truth and given the spirit of freedom. Just as Nepstad’s perception and statement of clarity reveals that in authoritarian governments political leaders often use repression to retain power (Nepstad 1).  This is entirely true, and, unfortunately our American government is and has exercised oppression doe too long. Just in the pandemic alone, the national guard and police authority have carried out their agenda paralyzing the people and their ability to move in nonviolent power of protests.   Lastly, because of the current evolution into technology and a widespread usage of government surveillance and authoritative control, the people will revert and I believe walk into a place to obtain freedom as they evolve, shift and elevate into the next upcoming enlightenment.

Political nonviolence is very effective, and it does have a future, but the main issue is the structure of the movements themselves. Recently we have seen that nonviolent resistance has become very popular in society, but its effectiveness has declined. Nonviolent resistance is a way for people who are armed to protest, strike, achieve political goals, etc. It’s a way of political action against the adversary. Before the main way, movements fought was armed and using violence. 


In recent decades people have turned to nonviolence making it the most common way of resistance. In the post-war era people became very interested in advocating for human rights and nonviolence was the primary way of achieving change. “Wider segments of society have come to value and expect fairness, the protection of human rights, and the avoidance of needless violence” (Chenoweth, 72). This emphasizes the shift dot people made after witnessing the horrors of war and looking for different alternatives that could be effective and not violent.

Another reason why nonviolence will remain effective in the future is that recently we have seen more democratic governments being reverted to authoritarianism. It’s very common to see protest movements happening in authoritarian countries. Civil resistance has increased all around the world where people were trying to confront injustice and the best part is more people are believing that nonviolence can be successful. “Among the 565 campaigns that have both begun and ended over the past 120 years, about 51 percent of the nonviolent campaigns have succeeded outright, while only about 26 percent of the violent ones have” (Chenoweth, 74). This shows that nonviolence has been more effective than violence in the last couple of years.

Furthermore, when it comes to authoritarian countries their political leaders can shift and rely on the police and military to do the repression under their citizens. “Nonviolent revolutionary groups were 46 times more likely to usher in regime change if they convinced the military and police to defect” (Nepstad, 337). This is very important because there have been cases where troops have shifted their support to the opposition which facilitates the collapse of a regime. This idea emphasizes that the capacity that a movement has to build people’s power and regroup it’s very important for the future of nonviolence all around the world in fighting injustice. Movements need to develop new alternatives and strategies for the future effectiveness of political nonviolence.

Throughout history political nonviolence has been a powerful and effective approach in obtaining freedom, from Mahatma Gandhi’s nonviolent resistance against British colonial rule in India to Martin Luther King Jr’s leading nonviolent protests during the civil rights era in the United States. Chapter 8 from Sharon Erickson Nepstad’s book and her article “Mutiny and Nonviolence in the Arab Spring” provide insight into the effectiveness of political nonviolence in the modern world.

In her book, Nepstad examines the factors that lead to successful nonviolent revolutions. She mentions strategic planning, tactical innovation, mass participation, and defections. These factors are critical because they help nonviolent movements to build momentum, attract more support, and ultimately weaken the power of the opponent. On page 136, she states “In terms of the best strategies to pursue, this study suggests that the techniques that have the most influence are those that undermine a regimes sanctioning power (Nepstad, 2011).” According to Nepstad’s findings, nonviolent movements that include those four factors have a substantially higher chance of success.

Similarly, in her article “Mutiny and Nonviolence in the Arab Spring,” Nepstad argues that nonviolence was a crucial factor in the success of the Arab Spring and that defections are an important factor. In her article ‘Mutiny and Nonviolence in Arab Spring’, she claims “this civil resistance literature indicates that security force defection strongly influence the outcome of nonviolent conflicts (Nepstad pg. 347, 2013).” She also notes that nonviolence helped to mobilize large numbers of people and force the regime to make changes. She also points out that nonviolent resistance was more effective than armed resistance because it attracted broader support, including from international actors who were hesitant to support violent groups.

However, Nepstad also acknowledges that there are limits to the effectiveness of political nonviolence. In her book, she says that some opponents may be willing to use extreme violence to suppress nonviolent resistance, as was the case in Syria during the Arab Spring. But despite these limitations, there is reason to believe that political nonviolence will continue to be an effective tool for achieving political change in the future. One reason is that nonviolent movements have become more sophisticated in their strategic planning and tactical innovation, as evidenced by the Arab Spring and other recent movements. Additionally, nonviolent movements are more likely to attract broader support and legitimacy than violent groups.

In conclusion, Sharon Erickson Nepstad’s book and article provide evidence that political nonviolence can be a powerful force for achieving political change. However, there are limits to its effectiveness, and opponents can use tactics to undermine nonviolent movements. With that being said, I believe that political nonviolence will continue to be an effective tool in the future.

Nepstad examines the possibility for nonviolent revolution in her book Mutiny and Nonviolence in the Arab Spring. In it, such examination is done through the application of contextual factors. She argues that for a nonviolent revolution to take place, there must be a certain level of repression and resistance to it, and that the success of the nonviolent revolution is determined by how skillfully this balance is deployed.

She cites hard data which backs up her claim, as nonviolent revolution was “46 times more likely to usher in regime change” (Nepstad, 337). Instead of a violent response to a historic or significant event, or to fight against a persisting injustice, Nepstad shows how nonviolence could solve these issues through convincing and resilience. Additionally, a revolutionary group looking for drastic change that is opting for nonviolent measures could potentially avoid any serious instability that would result from violence. Perhaps it could be said that such instability of an unjust system is indicative of its collapse and its harmful structures, but within that collapse, lives may be lost, and ultimately violence in any form paves the road for more violence to come.

However, the vital factors which precipitate a nonviolent revolution are constantly changing in today’s world, and there can be a level of uncertainty in the effectiveness of nonviolence in certain situations. This is especially concerning the future of nonviolence, where ‘resilience’ can be monitored -technologically- by the repression it is facing, and where comparisons between the past success of nonviolent revolution may be on a higher ground than its future ones. 

On an unrelated note, it is interesting to examine interactions between innately violent revolutionary ideologies like Maoism, whose fundament is the forceful and hostile takeover of an ‘unjust’ government, where such takeover, while being the origin of a leader, has its enactment by the people. Comparing this to nonviolence which believes in regime change through generally pacifist means, it would be worthwhile to analyze the differences between their respective propaganda or messaging to the common man, and the political or social context in which the country is in that can determine the interactions of the messaging. A question from this can be posed; even though on a surface level, violent and nonviolent revolutions both aspire for either regime change or political seizure, could these tactics eventually lead to different outcomes, despite their relatively-the-same object?

Overall, Napstad makes a convincing argument for nonviolent revolution, but many factors that her argument draws to have changed in the current world, and may make the future of nonviolent revolution unpredictable. Even with this level of unpredictability, nonviolent revolution can still -if employed correctly- be effective and serve to lessen the sociodominant factors which can influence its success.

It is difficult to determine whether political non-violent movements will continue to be as effective as they have been in the past. Based on current political events and the constant threatening to democracy, basic civil rights, freedom of speech, women rights, safety issues, national security issues, and others, it is inconceivable the idea of a decrease in public concern, and tensions that often lead to political nonviolent movements. As Erica Chenoweth explains, “so many injustices remain, and so few institutions are equipped to address them, that the demand for civil resistance has increased” (73). However, data seems to show that the efficacy of these civil movements is declining.

Nonviolent movements have historically proven to be more successful than the ones that rely solely on violence, and have been able to produce more drastic, social, and political changes. The author cites a few examples, such as the anti-apartheid movement in Africa that ended the systemic racial discrimination and segregation (Chenoweth 73), and I would add as an example as well, the civil war and abolition of slavery as a result of civil disobedience. According to data, nonviolence resistance still “outperforms violence by a 2 to 1 margin” (Chenoweth 74), and yet less than 34% of nonviolent revolutions in the past 10 years have succeeded (Chenoweth 75).

According to Chenoweth, some of the factors that are affecting nonviolent action have to do with deeply rooted regimes, government adaptability, the retreat from United States as democratic world leader, over-reliance on mass demonstrations and technology (Chenoweth 76-79). Technology offers an advantage in mass communications, but it also facilitates state vigilance and the spread of misinformation (Chenoweth 79). Mass concentrations are important but are not the best way to generate pressure in the long term. The most important factor in my opinion is the combination of deeply rooted regimes (or entrenched as she says), and their adaptability to respond to nonviolent movements. Back in the 80’s mass concentrations were a surprise for governments who did not necessarily know how to suppress them (Chenoweth 76), and with United States as democratic police world and its allies, authoritarian regimes were more inclined to respect certain human rights and withdraw from power. However, now governments know how to react to these types of movements and even manage to infiltrate their supporters to provoke violence, “giving the regime justification to use heavy-handed tactic” (Chenoweth 79) and even more violence. As it is the case of Venezuela, (I am a Venezuelan immigrant), where the regime of Chavez and later Nicolas Maduro, conducted mass arrests to pacific strikers and students, allowed the military to use chemical weapons on protesters, rape, torture and imprisoned the major opposition political leader, which ultimately ended the nonviolent political movement that had started in the early 2000’s .

Under these circumstances it is, as I said earlier, really hard to foresee how efficient nonviolent political movements will be in the future, there are many more movements to come as the world gets more problematic, our democratic leader is gone, and basic rights are threatened, so the movements will arise for sure but how successful they will be remains unknown to me. Under the right guidance, leadership, logistic, organization and planning, hopefully successful.

Sharon Erickson Nepstad’s book, Nonviolent Revolutions, examines the phenomenon of political nonviolence and its effectiveness in achieving social and political change. The book explores various case studies of nonviolent movements, including the civil rights movement in the United States, the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa, and the overthrow of dictatorships in the Philippines, Serbia, and Tunisia. Through these case studies, Nepstad argues that nonviolent resistance can be an effective alternative to violent rebellion and that it has the potential to create lasting social change.

Chapter 1 in specifically provides an overview of the book’s key themes and arguments. Nepstad argues that nonviolent resistance is a powerful tool for social and political change, but it is often overlooked in favor of more traditional forms of rebellion. She notes that nonviolent resistance can be effective in a variety of contexts, from challenging colonial rule to fighting against authoritarian regimes. The chapter also introduces the concept of “the power of the people,” which refers to the idea that nonviolent movements are successful because they draw on the support and participation of ordinary people.

Whether political nonviolence will remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past is a matter of debate and I personally am uncertain in providing a definitive claim as I believe it ultimately can be impacted by a multitude of variables. The effectiveness of political nonviolence in the future will depend on various prominent factors, such as the context and the degree of repression faced by the movement, the level of popular support it generates,  the strategic decisions made by its leaders as well as the general notion of where and why the repression comes about (as the same oppression faced by one state may be managed differently compared to another state facing similar oppression due to cultural/religious/political/ societal factors, etc…)   As Nepstad argues, “nonviolent resistance is not a panacea,” and its effectiveness is not guaranteed. However, there is an inherent potential for political nonviolence to be an effective tool for social and political change, as demonstrated by numerous successful nonviolent movements in the past. As well as non-violence contains a greater appeal to a broader range of people and can mobilize greater participation from ordinary citizens, including those who may not be willing to support violent forms of rebellion. Furthermore, it ultimately will depend on how governments and bodies of power respond to nonviolent revolution as at times nonviolent movements can also be more difficult for governments to repress without damaging their own legitimacy and public support but a call for violence will always be more difficult to ignore and may amplify and accelerate change at a greater rate than nonviolence.

Overall, Nepstads book suggests that political nonviolence has the potential to remain an effective tool for social and political change in the future, but its effectiveness will depend on a variety of contextual factors. As she notes, “the outcome of a nonviolent campaign is never predetermined, and success is never guaranteed” (part one).

I have a very personal experience with political non-violence. As mentioned by Chenoweth, there have been massive protests in Venezuela in 2017 and 2019 against the regime of Nicolás Maduro, but this goes way back to the beginnings of Hugo Chávez’s government. I moved to the US in 2013, but I have participated in non-violent protests with pots and pans from my home and outside in the streets (marches), and, when I could, participated via social media ever since I was a child in the early 2000s to the 2010s and beyond. But I always saw repression from the government: there were political prisoners, the military threw tear gas at people, killing people, and other horrible things. This is my point: I am not sure if non-violence will work for the future, since I have this past bias from first-hand experiences that actually, non-violence does not get too far.

The following will be a list of things from the texts I believe tell us that non-violence will perhaps not be the best way for the future: Nepstad in Chapter 8 tells us that there might be some instances where the troops were less willing to repress when they see resisters remaining non-violent (Nepstad, Chapter 8, 129). But this is not always the case. There are definitely some examples like the nuns in the preface (Nepstad, Preface, 4) and the famous image of a Chinese citizen standing in front of the tank in the 1980s, but the majority of instances, unfortunately, end up in repression and violence from the authorities, which in turn, creates the “political jiu-jitsu” he mentions in chapter 1 (Nepstad, Chapter 1, 15). So, in my opinion, violence creates violence, and non-violence also creates violence. I also love Chenoweth’s article: it does tell us the realities of non-violence post-pandemic and beyond the 2010s, very different from a Cold War era. Social media has a huge impact on how we protest nowadays (page 72 explains this very well). But this tool can also be counterproductive for the protesters: the government can take control of them. With this, I will say that Cuba’s 2021 protests are the best example. Also, Chenoweth on page 76 mentions how the governments of Iran, Russia, Venezuela, Belarus, etc use the support of their allies (powerful allies) and imprison opponents in order to counter-attack the protesters. This is huge, because sometimes I feel like no matter the international sanctions Nepstad mentions on pages 13-14, these international allies make it hard for these sanctions to actually affect the oppressive state. The argument of the defections of Nepstad mentions in his article (page 338) is very interesting as well: these definitely weakened the USSR’s credibility in the Cold War. But bringing this to the future, again, I am not sure if this will change anything: Yes, there are lots of Russians, Ukrainians, Cubans, Venezuelans, Syrians, defecting from their countries because of what is happening there; but, has that changed their nations’ situation? Is defecting then a “qualifying” non-violent form to protest? Because I am getting a bit tired of my own country not changing much 🙁

These are then a few things from the text that support my opinion. Can’t wait to read what everyone has to share!

Political nonviolence has existed for quite a while, so it should not be a shock to many that we are discussing if the efficacy of nonviolence will remain prevalent in the future. It should be known that violence is becoming old-fashioned, otherwise meaning that nonviolence is more practiced and widespread than violence. As Chenoweth states, “the market for violence is drying up. This is most strikingly obvious with regard to outside state support for armed groups, which fell off sharply with the breakup of the Soviet Union.”(Chenoweth 72) In fact, both the USSR and USA during the Cold War funded many different rebel groups of varying ideologies until the fall of the Soviet Union, which saw the end of this competition-by-proxy in 1991 due to the changed global balance of power. While it is covered by Chenoweth that there is a decline in the efficacy of political nonviolence which could be evident by observing various movements not only in the United States but around the world, there is still a much sharper decline in the success and efficacy of violence. Chenoweth backs the previous statement up by mentioning, “While governments have had greater success at beating down challenges to their authority, nonviolent resistance still outperformed violent resistance by a 4-to-1 margin.” (Chenoweth 75).

Chenoweth also argues that there are new threats to political nonviolence like the possibility that governments have become stronger or more aware on how to quell political nonviolence and nonviolence movements, or that technology while being beneficial to nonviolence could also be its greatest enemy because the more advanced technology becomes, the more swiftly a government could take advantage of this technological advancement and instill some sort of Chinese-esque police state. However, it is not just Chenoweth who makes these points, even Nepstad points to various ways nonviolence resistance can be stopped if nonviolent organizers are not cautious enough. Nepstad uses the uprisings in China, Kenya, and Panama as the examples of the failures of political nonviolence, by stating, “Another factor that derailed the uprisings in China, Panama, and Kenya was the inability to keep protestors nonviolent. In all three of these cases, there were moments when demonstrators became aggressive and sometimes rioted”(Nepstad Ch.8). Nepstad also mentions that another issue when practicing nonviolence is the potential rise of a divided leadership and internal movement conflict, using China as an example where leaders fought over strategy and spent more time battling each other, therefore limiting their ability to launch new actions. 

With all of this information in mind, it is foolish to think that political nonviolence will become extinct, or its efficacy will continue to decline, when in reality and as previously mentioned, political nonviolence is still far more effective than political violence. Therefore, I am in agreement with Chenoweth who states that, “the pandemic has served as a much-needed reset for movements around the world—and many of them have used the time wisely.” (Chenoweth 83) Which is indeed true and can be evident by the vast amount of movements that have already been seen around the United States alone, not to mention the movements around the world like in Argentina in relation to abortion rights, or to Colombia and its peace deal with rebel groups movements, or even the Black Lives Matter movement in the United States. I believe the efficacy of political nonviolence was in decline until the COVID-19 pandemic, and now more than ever will it be important to continue to practice nonviolence. 

Nonviolent resistance is a kind of negotiation in which nonviolent individuals disagree with their opponents using a variety of techniques such as protests, strikes, and many others to get their point across. Although it can be extremely unpleasant, this type of dispute helps avoid causing any harm to the other party. At times peaceful protest is very successful. When conflicts turn violent they seem to be not as successful compared to nonviolent actions. Even when additional aspects, such as state vulnerability, levels of democracy, rule of law, and the regime’s resistance to using force against its citizens are taken into consideration nonviolent actions succeed. The reason behind them not being successful is that an increasing amount of society finds nonviolent resistance to be easier and more effective in terms of protest. one of the most effective techniques when it comes to nonviolent action is strikes. are only successful when a large number of people participate. “Although nonviolent resistance campaigns reached a new peak of popularity over the past decade, their effectiveness had begun to decline even before the pandemic hit. The main culprit for this has been change in the structure and capabilities of these movements themselves” (Chenoweth,70). Being violent won’t help any individual in the situation nor will it cause things to get better but even when people are not heard when using nonviolence. The way media outlets portray protests, strikes, etc is what influences how the public perceives them. During many protests when nonviolence is the first method, individuals are pushed due to how the issues are not changing or how they are being treated at the moment. Political nonviolence will not remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past because movements such as black lives matter are not getting justice. Peaceful protest leads to violence in the end because officers feel threatened during a protest and decide to use physical force on people during events or arrests. “But as made clear by the widespread antiracism protests in the United States in response to the killing of Ahmaud Arbery by white vigilantes and the killings of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd at the hands of police, the the era of mass demonstrations is not about to end, in the United States or anywhere else.”(Chenoweth, 80). It is evident people are tired of police brutality and having to go through the same thing over and over with no change being made which will lead to violence in the end. The rallies for Black Lives Matter were fairly nonviolent. Protesters demonstrated a new form of nonviolent restraint, especially for a campaign involving multiple documented cases of police brutality. Police are said to be the ones starting conflict even during a nonviolent protest that probably resulted in additional arrests, participant injuries, and even property damage which was not the result protestors wanted.

Political nonviolence remains effective throughout the decades, and scientific scholars such as authors Sharon Erickson Nepstad and Erica Chenowitz recognize civil resistance to be a far-reaching tool for change. Mass nonviolent struggle that leads to changes for those who rule are recognized as successful tools in revolution. She states,” Therefore I focus only on the factors associated with regime overthrow and demise, not regime Contruction” (Chpt 1 Nepstad), this distinction in success does not come from far-reaching change, but instead factors of active engagement in her definition of civil disobedience.

Nonviolent revolutions offer an analysis on how it can be successful for boycotting and strategically withdrawing cooperation. Nepstad recognizes the long history on political nonviolence by withdrawing the material resources from government like taxes used to put a strain in the economy and make a push for change, but the strategy of non-cooperation is also shared with the electoral model which holds elections. First, the Electoral model exposes sham elections making a government more vulnerable in lacking public support. Nepstad analyzes how regimes promote troop loyalty and the ways foreign or international support delegitimizes their goal. Second, none armed interactions are 46 times more likely to succeed when security force defection occurred, which is essential in successful reaching political goals. Third, although state enforce is effective, she emphasizes it often backfires when directed at non-violent political movements.

Chenowth prognosis on the future of nonviolent resistance stands on that she has believes that the future of nonviolent resistance will be effective and will continue to have ways to adapting to technology and changes. Chenoweth adds that like in the pandemic, public perception of leadership and their styles of governance has shifted. Nonviolent activists have a chance to recalibrate and continue to be successful. For this reason, I believe that yes, political nonviolence will remain effective in the future. The prognosis of the future is that we have seen the value in peaceful protest from our history and will find more ways of peaceful protesting.

Yes, political nonviolence will remain effective in the future. Today, the people are in favor of peaceful protest.  After reading Nepstad, it is mentioned there are six nonviolent revolts. The six nonviolent revolts, I will list a few and they are, economic downturns, example made was Chile and its modest problems reversed (economic problems), second was repression, third was elite defections, and what that means the economy was in rough shape that had many elites to rethink before investing.


“In the 1980s began, few anticipated that nonviolent revolutionary movements would instigate significant political changes throughout the world. Cold War animosities and the escalating arms race created a belly cause global dynamic, which was used to justify our sorts of totalitarian measures. Citizens rose to challenge some of these authoritarians’ regimes. Many did so nonviolently facing down tanks, embarking on hunger strikes, filling the streets with protesters, and refusing to support unjust leaders any longer. Some of these revolts produced spectacular results, ousting long last standing dictatorships in a short time. Others failed to instigate change, sometimes and then tragically.” (Nepstead, ch. 8)

The book also talks about the three successful cases in Germany when a few soldiers deserted and informed commanding officers that they will not carry orders to punish protesters. Then in Chile was used as another example when the top military and law enforcement refused to impose martial law after the plebiscite vote. “In the East Germany case, entire units decided beforehand that they would refuse orders; then they jointly announced their decision to their commanding officers.”  The Philippines had a similar dynamic where troops witnessed some of their fellow soldiers siding with the crowds. Chile’s military also carried similar behavior when soldiers sided with crowds opposing to carry out Pinochet’s plans to annulling vote, instead it was done collectively. Sorry Panama’s soldiers elected to follow the corrupt Noriega, not all soldiers, only the ones immediately standing with Noriega. And they stood by him because he allowed them to accept bribes and corrupt resources.

In conclusion, in order to plan a successful nonviolent revolt is just as difficult as planning a violent one. Leaders need to develop effective tactics that undermine a regime’s ability to function. Another way would be to convince law enforcement and military to side with the people and be the change. I don’t think law enforcement would, however, military seem to have a history of doing so.

Non-violent resistance, also known as civil resistance, achieves social change through civil disobedience, political non-cooperation, and symbolic protests. The main intention of conducting political non-violence is to express dissatisfaction with certain practices in a government. Some arguments support the movements, while others are against these processes. Nevertheless, political non-violence will remain effective as it has been previously. This discussion post will provide evidence suggesting that political non-violence will remain effective in the future as it has been in the past.

Chenoweth (69) argues that political non-violence yielded many results in 2019. The author cites the mass uprisings in Sudan, which led to changes in power and stabilized the country’s economy. Omar- al-Bashir fell from power after mass protests from the citizens. The fall from power indicates that non-violent resistance can impact social change in society. Chenoweth (72) further highlights that the market for violence is drying up where the state no longer supports armed militia or groups to push for a political agenda which means that people or now opting for non-violent civil resistance. In addition, society has shifted to value and expect fairness by protecting human rights and avoiding needless violence. Horrors of violence are now visible, which means that people understand the consequences and would instead look for non-violent means to achieve social and political change, which shows that non-violent resistance will be a way to go in the future.

In Chapter 8, Nepstad focuses on the structural factors influencing non-violent resistance. Leaders continue to have different opinions, and governments have their opposition and are more divided based on the decisions adopted by governments. The future is bound to introduce us to new dynamics that will necessitate the adoption of certain practices that will not favor the opposition, which means that people will either support or go against their leaders. Non-violent resistance will effectively make new choices promoting political, economic, and social change. Political and economic incentives will influence the security forces’ loyalty to the regime, indicating that common interests contribute to forming parties with similar goals (Nepstad, 345). Another thing that will influence the success of non-violent resistance is the international support and sanctions that favor the resistance(Nepstad, chapter 1). This is bound to make it effective because we expect governments to be more connected in the future, which means that it is possible to achieve financial support that will promote resistance in favor of the larger population with common interests.

Political nonviolence and revolutions have been powerful tools for social and political change throughout history, redefining history as time has progressed. Revolutions have been a prominent form of protest throughout human history. These movements tend to arise for similar reasons and “erupt when five conditions are present” (Nepstad, Ch. 1). There are five circumstances that lead to revolutionary movements. First, there must be numerous complaints against the government that cast doubt on its right to rule. Second, when national elites turn away from the state and toward the opposition, revolutionary uprisings are more likely to occur. Third, people must be sufficiently outraged by the injustices of the rule to act. Fourth, opposition groups must unite under a rebellious ideology that places the outrage inside an ideological and social critique. Fifth, groups that can mobilize people must plan the rebellion and organize assistance.

One factor that could impact the effectiveness of political nonviolence is the changing nature of power structures. Power becomes more diffuse and challenging to oppose as societies become more complex and interdependent. Nonviolent movements might find it difficult to enlist the same degree of popular support as they have in the past in such situations. Additionally, nonviolent groups might find it harder to gain traction and succeed as authoritarian regimes become more adept at stifling dissent and restricting access to information.

Another factor that could affect the effectiveness of political nonviolence is the changing nature of the conflict. Nonviolent strategies might be less successful in bringing about long-lasting change if disputes grow more intricate and multifaceted. For instance, in situations when armed groups are involved in bloody combat, nonviolent movements could find it difficult to obtain support or have their voices heard. Additionally, if conflicts become more polarized and contentious, it can be challenging for nonviolent groups to garner the kind of widespread support they need to bring about change.

Finally, technological advancements could also play a role in shaping the effectiveness of political nonviolence. As social media and other forms of digital communication become more prevalent, nonviolent movements may be able to mobilize more quickly and effectively. However, they may also face new challenges, such as the spread of disinformation and the use of online surveillance and censorship by authoritarian regimes.

In conclusion, the question of whether political nonviolence will remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past is difficult to predict. While nonviolent tactics have proven successful in many contexts, the changing nature of power structures, conflict, and technology could present new challenges for nonviolent movements. Nonetheless, political nonviolence will continue to be an important tool for social and political change, and it will remain an important part of activism in the years to come.

Political nonviolence has seen success in the past, specifically following the Cold War era. In countries like the Philippines, Chile, and East Germany, nonviolence was effective in dismantling their current regime at the time and inducing a revolution in the country (Nepstad Ch 1). In the Philippines, they achieved a nonviolent revolution through noncooperation and appealing to the armed forces with religiosity. When the army came with their weapons to disperse the resistance, nuns prayed before them and made a barricade between the protestors and the guards. Their prayers swayed the guards to eventually join their movement and left the current leader with no one on his side, and forced him to flee. This level of nonviolence in today’s desensitized society may not have the same effect.

In the United States, there is a high level of gun ownership and a strong sense of self-preservation and standing your ground. Because of this, it makes it very difficult to get the working class on the same page to revolt in the first place. As Nepstad mentioned, this is the first step in inciting a successful revolution (Chapter 8). Civilians are heavily armed individually, so it is easy for them to access vast weaponry to incite violent protests. For instance, the January 4th insurrection, in which armed Trump supporters stormed the capitol and threatened the lives of congressmen and women, had every intention of violently resisting the political system. Nepstad discusses how protestors becoming violent can derail the movement as it gives reasoning to the state to declare martial law and fight back (Chapter 8). With such a heavily militarized civilian population it is increasingly difficult to convince anyone to use nonviolence. This is already an issue with the everyday shootings the country faces with someone going off the hinges and shooting dozens of people to death every day. It is not hard to assume trying to promote nonviolence to a population that prioritizes gun usage would be unlikely.

Globally we have become extremely desensitized to violence so it becomes difficult to encourage nonviolence when people are so used to it in their everyday lives. Or if not in their everyday lives they see it constantly elsewhere in the world on the news and social media. I think this will make political nonviolence less effective in the future because of the increased accessibility to violent weapons and the desensitization to the impact of violence. If people see violence as less of an issue because of how constantly they are exposed to it they are not going to see the value in practicing nonviolence to achieve their goal.

Over the decades there has been an exponential growth in nonviolent resistance altering the conventional outlook on conducting radical change in the foundation of a government. Based on a controlled study, there has been a trend of “…violent insurgencies [declining] since the 1970s…” (Chenoweth 71). However, it really is difficult to determine if political violence will continue to be effective in the future. While technology has been a significant tool in spreading the news and aiding activists in their struggle for a better future, with further technological advances, it has also made equipped governments with the ability to restrict their opposition through digital surveillance, censorship, social manipulation, internet shutdowns, etc. Nonetheless, it would be shortsighted to believe that people who have been disparaged by their government will not acclimate to times and seek for justice through nonviolent tactics. I believe that political nonviolence will remain effective and continue to challenge oppressive systems. New technologies have made information accessible to millions of people worldwide allowing the notion of nonviolent demonstrations as a functional tool to bring about change highly influential. The rise of social platforms that have the ability to transmit messages from activists fighting against a repressive government globally has the potential of reaching the right international allies that will aid their movement. Plus, it allows for oppressive actors, from government officials to national elites, to be brought into the light and held accountable by international players. Ultimately, giving nonviolent mobilizations a greater chance of success. In addition, technological advancements have created ‘free spaces’ where individuals have the chance to gather, create strategies, revitalize the movement, and so on.

Throughout history, political nonviolence has proved to have the potential and create significant change within countries. As long as people have the vigor for change through nonviolent tactics it can continue to be effective. Unfortunately, violent revolutions are not going anywhere and even though they can bring about change it creates a continuous cycle of disaster and disorder. However, the advancement of tools, such as the Artificial Intelligence, can change the effectiveness of nonviolent movements and raise the probability of success. Despite the future being unpredictable, in my opinion, political nonviolence will continue to transform governments.

Political non-violence basically means being able to make a social or political change without causing any physical violence. Political non violence has been around for centuries in order to create positive impact in peoples lives. Examples of political non violence we’ve learned the past few weeks were Ghadhi and Martin Luther King Jr. and how both were able to create a change in their communities without using violence.  Ghadhi believed in living by the truth. They may come from different backgrounds, but they both wanted to impact their communities. They both used marches and boycotts to bring attention. They both were firm believers in nonviolent approaches and respect for others.  I believe political non-violence is essential when it comes to making positive long lasting changes in communities. According to Nepstad literature reveals that the causes of violent and nonviolent revolutions are generally the same , but armed and unarmed struggles employ different strategies and have distinct dynamics. ( Chapter 1)  However, according to Maria Stephen and Erica Chenoweth, they compared violent with nonviolent movements to discern which variables influence whether a movement won or lost. What they discovered is that violent and nonviolent movement exhibit distinctive dynamics, since the factors that stream one type of struggle did not have the same affect on the other. Nepstad (Chapter 1)
It is difficult to say weather or not non violence will be effective, especially when it comes to different countries. However, when it comes to political nonviolence remaining as effective in the future, I would have to agree with this statement. History tends to always repeat itself just in different ways. Not every non violent movement will workout but it does bring awareness to issues that citizens have. Due to modern times, social media will initially play a huge role on how political non violent movements will play out. With social media we are able to spread awareness within a small time frame with many people. Now a days we are able to start online movements for change, by either participating in videos, comments , sharing, and even signing petitions.
Secondly, I believe ideology has also changed within todays generation and gender. When you compare Baby Boomers and Gen Z you automatically get two different outlooks on how issues should be dealt with. Gen Z is typically more vocal and internet savvy  to spread awareness vs Baby Boomers being more war focused and old fashion. In conclusion, there are many variations too take into consideration weather or not political non violence will have room in the future. But at the same time it is not impossible. Violence will certainly not be going anywhere but non violence will also have a greater impact.

Political nonviolence has been a stabilized sense of action taken by society in numerous parts of the world in the past 3-4 centuries. It involved many tough battles of one’s voice to ensure that rightful values were allowed, and a better life for all is comprehended. As the world embarks on numerous challenges in the present day and the future, political nonviolence comes into question many scholars that maybe it results in an idea and action that won’t be necessary for the future. I certainly believe that political non-violence will remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past, and I’ll go ahead and explain several ideas on why my idea is supported through many different acts.
Political nonviolence has been a form of showing the true perseverance of many people and society, It has demonstrated that ‘’Nonviolent resistance is a method of struggle in which unarmed people confront an adversary by using collective action including protests, demonstrations, strikes, and noncooperation to build power and achieve political goals.’’ (Chenoweth 2020) The world is growing significantly, and everyone understands what they’re capable of when matters are not in their favor because everyone deserves the chance to live happily with the hope to grow as a society, which leads to people will continue to revolt against dangerous regimes in how ‘’a successful revolt requires good strategists who identify a ruler’s weakness and devise effective methods of withdrawing popular support from the state.’’(Nepstad 2011)
In the 21st century, we have witnessed several moments that perhaps lives have changed and the world. But one thing has not changed, which is democracy. Democracy has continued to prevail through the challenges we all face but we become stronger from such situations as covid 19, ‘’There is no doubt that the covid-19 pandemic has been a sharp and sudden blow to the dozens of ongoing civil-resistance movements around the world.’’ (Chenoweth 2020) The pandemic certainly made it much stronger and broader with the full capacity to facilitate nonviolent revolutionary movements and acts to ensure what’s right is done for the future to come. Many people in terms of seeing processes of political opposition in which a ruling may be passer not in their favor may come to a deep of a successful nonviolent bemusement in how it can aim to the power of transformation, ‘’Nonviolent revolutionaries also aim to seize power and usher in political transformation, but they operate with an alternative conception of political power.’’(Nepstad 2011) Such ideas from nonviolence revolutionary counters many factors that correlate significance of how society takes into consideration. I believe that the world is stronger, and will use its will to undermine the thought of contradiction whether it’s a government official or not. This idea will become effective soon due to how its past had worked significantly, and most likely now the world will use it in more of a more significant way due to the level of complexity that has arrived in the world.

Political non-violence will remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past and may even become more effective at creating change in politics than violence and revolutions. The problem with revolutions is that they bring suffering and a new government that has to face its challenges. On the other end of the spectrum, non-violence brings political change without damaging the current government or physically harming any individual. There is also an increased stigma where violence is concerned and as time goes on it becomes more and more frowned upon as Erica Chenoweth states “The market for violence is drying up. This is most strikingly obvious with regard to outside state support for armed groups, which fell off sharply with the breakup of the Soviet Union.” (Chenoworth 72). Nonviolent movements are also much easier to spread in this digital age so the narratives that they create are more accessible than ever and can reach more people and garner higher levels of support. New levels of technology being able to reach a higher percentage of the population than ever allowing for widespread attention will make it a lot easier for these movements to attract supporters. This means that nonviolent movements are perhaps going to be more effective than ever before. Nonviolence was always more effective than its violent counterparts and as time progresses these movements will function more efficiently than ever before.

Sharon Nepstad provides quality empirical data in her writings showing that nonviolent protest is much more effective in causing changes to a regime than violent movements. She states “armed movements, which are not as dependent on widespread participation to achieve their goals” (Nepstad chapter 1). These violent protests are not nearly as effective at creating long-term widespread change because they do not rely on the majority of the population’s support just the armed class of citizens. This is what makes political non-violence so effective for Nepstad it relies heavily on the support of the people resulting in longevity and more effective change. Another piece of evidence that she provides that supports the claim that nonviolent protest is more effective is that foreign sanctions have no impact on the success of these movements. On the other hand, foreign sanctions double the success of violent movements making it seem as though violent movements need outside force help to achieve their goals while nonviolent movements maintain their power without outside influencers.

Political nonviolence has been around for many years, and in my opinion, will still be current. To keep initiatives moving forward, reaching consensus is an essential component. Aggression in an uprising runs the danger of breaking this agreement and might turn off people who would normally be sympathetic to a cause. Although the future is unpredictable, It is impossible to predict if social pacifism will be successful in the future. Furthermore, there are instances where the use of electoral pacifism has been demonstrated to be an effective strategy for ushering in economic and economic change. In particular, protests and strikes have shown to be powerful weapons for putting pressure on governments to change their policies to benefit most of the population.
On the other side, a number of governments have developed a dictatorial stance over time, which has led to increasing limitations on the liberties of open speech, the capacity to assemble, and various other freedoms. “Nonviolent resistance is a method of struggle in which unarmed people confront an adversary by using collective action including protests, demonstrations, strikes, and noncooperation to build power and achieve political goals.”[1] Cultural pacifism may not always be as successful as it can be if authorities are hesitant to grant compromises to those engaging in peaceful protests. Furthermore, certain regimes would respond harshly to social pacifism, which might spark further unrest and bloodshed.
Political pacifism’s effectiveness in the years to come will depend on a variety of factors, such as how severely authorities suppress their citizens, how willing they are to make compromises how readily accessible other forms of demonstration are, and how much support they receive from the broad public. “One way to undermine security force loyalty is to raise the political costs of crackdowns. To do this, civil resisters need to ensure that any repressive action against the movement is televised globally.”[2] The ability of activists to adjust to shifting circumstances and find novel means of achieving their goals will ultimately define the course of political nonviolence. The coming years of electoral pacifism will be largely influenced by this, which is the most significant element.
Consequently, even if social pacifism has been effective in times gone by, it is challenging to forecast how effective it is going to be in the years to come. For the cause to continue to be successful, activists must be able to preserve their sense of inventiveness and adaptability in their approach.

Analyzing political nonviolence today and foreseeing its future relies greatly on the context in which it is occurring. As Nepstad notes, the perception of state power is significant to political movements. However, this perception is significant in terms of more than just assessing why political violence or nonviolence are the chosen strategy. The perception of state power in a society is also important to how effective nonviolence can be. In states where there is a mutual relationship between government and governed, where the state relies upon the people, political nonviolence is more effective. This is because the state relies upon the people and when strategic nonviolence and civil resistance are executed properly, the state cannot survive without great changes. On the other hand, in states where the political structures are not reliant on its people to retain power, political nonviolence is less successful. With this dichotomy, political nonviolence may remain effective, at least to some end, in certain parts of the world while losing ground in others.

As Nepstad argues, the withdrawal of skills to promote or sustain government activities, most notably in the form of strikes, is a greatly impactful way of forcing political change. However, in rentier states and resource rich states, such as oil rich states in the Middle East, the state does not rely upon the people in this way, making strikes and other forms of civil resistance obsolete. These types of states are more often authoritarian, making revolution extremely difficult, especially through nonviolence. Nonviolent political movements likely will not be effective in these types of states.

In democratic states where political structures rely upon the people

Many argue political nonviolence will lose efficacy due to nonparticipation, but there is still some hope for states in which the political structures rely upon the people. Greater motivation from the people to take action will be needed, but with the polarization being seen in many modern countries, there likely will be more people willing to take up a cause. However, the results of political nonviolence in this context will likely result more in reforms and policy changes rather than substantial overall political or regime change. With that in consideration, political nonviolence will likely remain effective in many states, but not to the effect of revolution.

Overall, the outlook for the efficacy of political nonviolence depends partly on the perspective taken. If one views political nonviolence as effective only if it results in revolutionary change, then nonviolence will absolutely be less effective. However, if political nonviolence is seen as effective when resulting in reforms or policy changes, it is very likely to remain effective in more democratic parts of the world. Unfortunately, in less democratic states where the support of the people is not needed, political nonviolence is not likely to be successful.

After thinking about the readings for this module, I have come to the conclusion that political nonviolence will remain at least as effective in the future as it has been in the past if not become even more effective. I believe that in the future political nonviolence will become even more effective as new tactics are being created everyday through the use of technology and nonviolence is being adopted by a wider audience that has seen the effectiveness of it. The strongest argument for this belief can be found in Erica Chenoweth’s The Future of Nonviolent Resistance. She discusses how nonviolent resistances are becoming more commonplace with the last two decades having double the nonviolent campaigns than the last five decades.

The biggest reason for this disparity is seen in Nepstad’s Mutiny and nonviolence in the Arab Spring where he writes about Ukrainian protestors broadcasting live footage of the area where they were protesting knowing that the government would be less likely to use violence if they knew their actions were being recorded. Nepstad wrote “This strategy was effective because if troops cracked down, this could lead to international condemnation, the ending of diplomatic relations, the cessation of aid and trade agreements, and arms embargoes” (Pg. 339). People no longer want to use violence since they know that if they are nonviolent, any use of force by their government will only strengthen their cause and encourage other countries to punish the violent country which would help them even further.

Nonviolent resistances can also sometimes do much more damage than violence can as seen in a chapter in a novel by Nepstad. He writes about civil resisters in East Germany where “mass emigration led to a shortage of factory workers, health care providers, transportation operators, and communication specialists” (Pg. 127). He shows that these resisters were able to damage the country’s economy, public health, and infrastructure all without using violence. This form of resistance also shows the protested government how essentially these protestors are and makes them more likely to give in to their demands. All these factors explain why nonviolent demonstrations are occuring more frequently now than ever before.

Even during the Covid-19 pandemic when going out and protesting could prove deadly, movements in the U.S protesting racism and police brutality as well as movements in Israel and even Taiwan still were carried out. Some of these protests were in person and others utilized video conferencing technology and email/messaging services to contact the people they were protesting against. Chenoweth describes the different types of resistance that were created and used during the pandemic that could continue to be used afterwards like “mutual-aid pods, strikes, stay-at-homes, sick-ins, online teach- ins, and various expressions of solidarity with and collective support for frontline workers” (Pg. 80). She stays hopeful about the future of nonviolent resistance and talks about the strides the practice has made since it was first used all the to today.

I believe that political nonviolence will continue to be an effective strategy in the future, and it might be even better than in the past because civil resistance campaigns attract more absolute numbers of people. Nonviolent revolutions help level the political playing field after transition by creating a political environment more conducive to multiparty competition. These types of movements have a lower barrier to participation than picking up a weapon. According to Nepstad, condition and strategy matter for a revolution of civil resistance or nonviolence. Because it is important to understand when to take advantage when an event is approaching. “Certain events often trigger public outrage and escalate longstanding grievances, making people receptive to unarmed revolutionary movements.” (Preface, Nepstad) Because according to past cases such as Germany and other countries cited by the author, she points out that certain conditions and together with the strategy could facilitate the expansion of a non-violent revolutionary movement. “Social, economic and political conditions can facilitate or impede the emergence and spread of nonviolent uprising” (Preface, Nepstad)
However, not only does it depend on the actions of only one side, but also knowing how to handle the counter-response of the opposition. Since the movement must not only focus on its strengths and opportunities, but must consider very well the strengths, movements and strategies of the opposition. “Ignoring the strategies of the dictators…provides an incomplete picture as some well-planned nonviolent revolts have failed because the rulers outmaneuvered the resisters” (Preface, Nepstad) And the key point that Nepstad considers important is knowing how to confront “cunning counter-strategies”. As mentioned above, I believe that “Nonviolence is a practical and effective form of political struggle”  (Nepstad, Chapter 1) Because civil resistance can be as disruptive as an armed or violent revolution to erupt in public spaces “With the aim of overthrowing established rulers and transforming political institutions. Nonviolent revolts employ different “weapons”, such as non-cooperation, strikes, boycotts, and subversion of the loyalty of regime supporters “(Chapter 1, Nepstad)

In addition, technology has facilitated communication globally, has brought communities closer together and, without a doubt, has created movements that work hard to resist oppressive regimes to such a point that most of the population stops following the governor. The leader will be seen at a disadvantage and with such a risk of being overthrown. The belief that the only way to remove an authoritarian power is violence is increasingly less effective, due to the consequences it entails and because it mainly includes the working or peasant class. However, through the civil resistance, it has the capacity to involve some social classes.  Nonviolent resistance has been shown empirically to be twice as effective as armed struggle in achieving major political goals. it has changed the way people fight for social and political change.  According Chenoweth’s groundbreaking research shows that nonviolent resistance campaigns are 10 times as likely to result in democratic change. So it seems that political nonviolence will remain effective in the future as it has been in the past.

As modernity encroaches upon the contemporary and drapes the goals and challenges of civil movements in reflective colors, it can certainly be argued that in recent decades the action of nonviolent organization has found itself in an uncertain state. Indeed, what was once a unique and collective challenge to oppressive power, supported by genuine followers rallied around moral obligations; ready to act, has in my opinion, become subtly watered down with the consolidation of a techno-centric society. In this argument, I mean to emphasize the significance nonviolence has, in terms of developing a meaningful foundation, on the Homefront of America. When we view past examples of these types of movements, if it is Indian independence, East German unity, or the Philippine revolution what we find are peoples genuinely united behind a large cause that directly affected their individual lives(Nepstad, Ch.8). The masses being collectively under the boot of injustice, or negatively effected by it, in general, such as elites, led them to grow focused on ridding the land of unfairness without, might I add, large numbers of half-hearted or false supporters prancing under the “change” facade. However, in the United States, the growing pace of technology and the rapid-fire normality of present movements had made this collective unity seen in historical examples consistently half-baked. This is largely due to three critical reasons each of which presents an insight into how the decadence of modernity has led to a lazy, lukewarm, and divided youth that only rallies, might I say, to nonviolent action when it’s “in fashion”.


Firstly, the growing domination of social media in the lives of young Americans has what I think resulted in an individual disconnect with the reality of current events, has exacerbated their ignorance surrounding the tactical side of nonviolent revolution, and increased the divide between them and the issues occurring to others near them. We see ads for marches, videos and pictures of injustice, and calls to action by organizers but the reality is for the far-reaching effects the programs have, it can be safely said that out of millions of likes and shares, only a handful will appear at a gathering. This is because what is being advocated does not or more importantly HAS not affected their lives individually. In other words, it’s largely difficult for a person who has never experienced police brutality or Cuban poverty to attend a rally in Miami protesting their presence. Moreover, those that do attend have only been exposed to the snippets and clips of large gatherings which to them translate to change and meaningful action (Chenoweth, Pg. 77-79), by which governments end up remaining unaffected. They misunderstand what nonviolent revolution is and swell movements up with false followers who prevent momentum from increasing due to their inability to comprehend the sacrifices needed in order for one to be called a “revolutionary”. Secondly, the collapse of collective morals among the masses and an increase in individualism which has been further facilitated by the sectionalist tendencies of social media has prevented large numbers of people to sympathize and grasp the pain of their fellow man in order to band in their cause. Being exposed to the web has enabled people to find their own niches and groups of people that they find affectionate towards, resulting in attachment to one’s interests rather than the collective interests of the populace. This can be backtracked as far as the “cultural revolution” of the Vietnam War era that diminished the idea of an “American people” and led to dispersed interest groups; i.e. hippies, war hawks, etc. Thirdly, involvement in large nonviolent demonstrations appears to be mostly light-hearted without any sense of long-term mainstay due to the brief high of collective frustration. However, as seen with mainstream news, the eyes of the nation almost instantly divert their attention to new matters that crop up and steal the limelight. At the same time, taking part in the brief weekends of traffic obstruction, picket signs, and celebrities rousing up crowds to chant for change only swells into enormous numbers because of the peer pressure from others. Any Miamian that has recently witnessed the Cuban protests will see that by the following week, it was as if the movement had never occurred.


I am willing to say that for the most part, not many Americans are the “revolutionaries” they paint themselves to be or align themselves to be. In essence, it is simply a trait to gain the attention of others, but in revelation, not many are willing to make the sacrifice necessary. This is why non-violence has a troubled future in my eyes as if a movement does not grow on the affected individual, its highly difficult for them to voluntarily lose income from a mass strike in order to gamble change; more or less risk their well-being from the truncheon of an officer. The “individual” construct I am focusing on regards that injustice must affect all individual groups not some. The term acts as a homonym. Nonviolence still holds water in the modern world, however, I do think that without a massive injustice or threat to the individuals such as a defensive war, draft, or outright obstruction of all rights, not some, then there can’t be a rallied mass. In other words, the population foundation from which these movements grow is rotting.

There are many forms citizens “fight” back when there is an unjust or don’t agree with certain laws. There are protests, sit-ins, marches, etc. and they all involve being nonviolent. In these cases, they are permitted since they are peaceful. I do think that political nonviolence will remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past. When there have been protests that have been peaceful, no one is harmed and its morally looked up on because of the respect. Doing the opposite in rooted in the thought that it is immoral and unjust. Nonviolence resistance is more effective and more likely to lead to democratisation than violent resistance. There have been many movements that are successful and have been nonviolent resistance. For example, the Freedom Rides. They were nonviolent and were more effective than a violent protest could have been. Sometimes nonviolent resistance can deliver better results because you are acting rational and with thought and not just with anger or violence. In the long run this could even benefit when it comes to legal matters. I believe that when protests or marches or whatever type of resistance becomes violent, the government responds back with even more violence and that never solves anything. Violence can only triumph power but it does nothing to help the situation. For example, when the Black Lives Matter movement was happening, there were peaceful protests going on everywhere in the United States. I remember also seeing videos on social media of protests that were not so nonviolent. There were stores, businesses, shops, restaurants, establishments, etc. being broken into and vandalized. This caused so much chaos. The government and states sent in police officers and in some cases even some military personnel to control the situation. Citizens were injured and this angered everyone even more! This real life example goes to show that violent resistance isn’t the best approach when wanting to protest against the government or anything in general. Kill them with kindness and respect is the best motto to go by because eventually there is negotiations or reevaluation of situations or laws.

I really liked Erica Chenoweth’s paper “The Future of Nonviolent Resistance”. Though we are currently living through these changing dynamics of nonviolence/civil disobedience it’s often to place them in a historical context and analyze the subtle shifts that are occurring while developments are being reported on on the news and the matters have a substantial influence on your present life (and if not then your current morals). Chenoweth’s paper was also a nice juxtaposition to the other papers in terms of nonviolence before 2019 and after. In that regard, I believe political nonviolence will remain as an effective tool for change towards the future.

As was said by Chenoweth “over the past decade, more and more democratic governments have faltered and reverted into authoritarianism” (pg 72). Later on in page 75 she states that of the successful revolutions that have occurred since 2010 nonviolent movements have a wider chance of success. With the new additions of information sharing and higher rates of education on a global level, this kind of notable difference between the success rate of one over the other improves its appeal. Another point in favor of the durability of nonviolence is the way it has adapted within the last couple of years to counter measures carried out by the government “movements have gained civic strength when they have developed alternative institutions to build self-sufficiency and address community problems that governments have neglected or ignored” (pg 81).

Also, we can see in Nepstad’s “Mutiny and Nonviolence in the Arab Spring” and Chapter 8 her book “Nonviolent Revolutions” how effective the messages of nonviolent protest carry and how they have the ability to appeal to the rational thoughts of the armed forces. In Mutiny and nonviolence […] , an example of this can be seen with President Mubarak of Egypt and his troops that decided to turn on him (pg. 342). In Chapter 8 it’s highlighted in the Philippines with how religious sentiment was persuasive in causing troops to defect from President Marcos. Though it may not always be the case, as explained on page 76 of “The Future of […]” on how governments are adapting to the changing rules of access to information and the ease of social mobilization.Even taking this into account, I think it’s clear to see just how much more compelling in a border sense, and the fact that it attracts more people only propels it’s success further.

Any theory of revolutionary success or failure must therefore include an assessment of both structural conditions and revolutionary strategy. Nonviolent revolutionaries also aim to seize power and usher in political transformation, but they operate with an alternative conception of political power. As the 1980s began, few anticipated that nonviolent revolutionary movements would instigate significant political changes throughout the world. ” Structural conditions and changing political circumstances are important because they can generate widespread dissatisfaction with a regime or strengthen the belief that change is now attainable. This, in turn, creates a large pool of potential civil resisters, making it possible to launch a revolt,” (Nepstad, Chapter 8). It is difficult to predict with certainty whether political nonviolence will remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past. However, there are several factors that could influence its effectiveness. “Nonviolent resistance is a method of struggle in which unarmed people confront in an adversary by using collective action —- including protests, demonstrations, strikes, and noncooperation — to build power and achieve political goals,” (Chenoweth, page 70). Contrary to popular belief, it is not the case that nonviolent campaigns emerge or win out mainly when the regimes they confront are politically weak, incompetent, or unwilling to employ mass violence. The most tempting explanations for the decline in effectiveness of civil-resistance campaigns center on the changed environment within which they now operate. “First, movement may be facing more entrenched regimes —- ones that have prevailed against repeated challenges by shoring up support from local allies and key constituencies; imprisoning, prominent oppositionists; provoking opponents into using violence; stuck in fears of foreign or imperial conspiracies; or obtaining diplomatic, cover from powerful international supporters…..second, governments may be learning and adapting to nonviolent challenges from below…… Today, given the ample historical record of successful nonviolent campaigns, state actors are likely are to perceive search movements as genuinely threatening…. One prominent strategy is to infiltrate movements and divide them from within…. third, with the election of Donald Trump in 2016, the United States has accelerated its retreat from its global role as a superpower with a prodemocracy agenda,” (Chenoweth, page 76). Therefore, upon deeper inspection, although it may be that states have begun to better anticipate and suppress nonviolent resistance, the two structural arguments have a little support in the historical record. Instead, the most compelling explanations for the declining effectiveness of nonviolent campaigns lie in the changing nature of the campaigns themselves

If nonagression has been effective thus far, I can’t imagine why political nonviolence wouldn’t continue to succeed in the future. Civil disobedience has safely forwarded progress more than any violent acts of sanctioned terrorism have. As noted in Chenoweth’s essay, “among the 565 campaigns that have both begun and ended over the past 120 years, about 51 percent of the nonviolent campaigns have succeeded outright, while only about 26 percent of the violent ones have” (Chenoweth, 74). The gap between achievements through political nonviolence and defeat under violence are major – civil disobedience has triumphed over war time and time again. By modes of protests, sit-ins, and mass demonstrations, it’s clear that passive resistance has forced change throughout history. Achieving social change can be completed socially as we’ve seen in the past with Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi’s pragmatic principles of truth, equity, peaceful defiance, and justice overall. While some may believe that actions speak louder than words, words elicit the actions needed to implement change.


Prominent from the late 20th century until today, there’s power in numbers and unity holds the power to transform institutions. Like Nepstad said, revolutions occur when five widespread circumstances are present: “grievances against the state, national elites shifting allegiance from the state to the opposition, people growing angered by regime injustices with a will to act, opposition groups’ ideology of rebellion, and the necessity of mobilizing organizations (Nepstad, Chapter 1). All of these conditions can be completed with a pacifist approach. I feel that we could reframe the question of whether or not civil disobedience will remain revolutionary in the future since it depends more on society’s conscious choice to continue choosing solidarity in uprisings.


As seen in Table 8.2 of Nepstad’s book, we can identify the forms of pacifism that prove most effective over 6 different countries. The foolproof techniques are refusal to acknowledge regime authority, refusal to cooperate or comply with laws, and challenging mentalities of obedience (Nepstad, Chapter 8). The common theme of these successful strategies is noncooperation. The less successful approaches are withholding skills, withholding material resources, and undermining states’ sanctioning power (Nepstad, Chapter 8). There’s a pattern of materialistic focus instead of behavioral changes. The choice to disobey authority isn’t something that can be taken away or given away unlike depriving resources. The choice to practice civil disobedience is something that everyone already possesses within themselves. Challenging unwanted norms is an accessible form of defiance since it’s an entirely mental technique. So as long as society continues to make the conscious decision to unite, political nonviolence will always remain successful.

Non-violent resistance is a type of struggle whereby an unnamed group of people confront an adversary using collective action like protests, strikes and noncooperation to realize political aims. Armed struggle was the way in which movements struggled for change against the political system however today, campaigns whereby people rely heavily on non-violent rebellion have done away with armed struggle as the most common way to improved action globally. Chenoweth (2020, 70states that violent uprisings have decreased since the 1970s while nonviolent resistance campaigns have become much more common. Chenoweth (2020, 70states that people have turned to non-violent resistance as they perceive it as a right and successful way for bringing change and although the concept of nonviolent resistance is not yet globally comprehended or accepted, its preference has grown significantly, in recent years. 

As the 1980s started, few people were hopeful that the nonviolent revolutionary movements would bring about major political transformations globally. Cold war animosities and the arms race were used to justify all forms of totalitarian moves yet surprisingly, citizens came out to challenge those authoritarian movements (Nepstad, 1966). Most people challenged thosetotalitarian measures using non-violent measures such as “embarking on hunger strikes, filling the streets with protesters and withdrawing their support of unjust leaders (Nepstad, 2013‘first chapter’). Some of these revolts brought about significant changes removing long-standing dictatorship regimes in a short period while others failed to bring about any change sometimes ending tragically (Nepstad, 2013 ‘first chapter’)

In the past fifty years, non-violent civil resistance has overwhelmed armed struggle as the typical form of mobilization utilized by revolutionary movements. In 2019, the world saw the largest wave of ass, nonviolent antigovernment movements in history (Chenoweth, 2020, 72). Huge protests and demonstrations exploded in many countries. Although 2011 was referred to as the year of protest, 2019 claimed the title more. Since 2017, the United States has had its own period of movements fighting for racial justice, immigration justice, gun control, defunding of police, women’s rights, climate justice, LGBTQ rights (Chenoweth, 2020, 76). However, within a few months all these movements came to a halt due to the global COVID-19 pandemic and the State’s response to the global pandemic which forced people to abandon mass protests(Chenoweth, 2020, 77). During that time, governments across the world took advantage of the unexpected lapse to push laws ranging from suspending free speech, banning immigrant admissions. The interruption caused by COVIID-19 brought with it significant challenges that have crippled mass movements in the past few years. (Chenoweth 2020, 79states that although non-violent resistance campaigns grew in popularity in the past decade, their ability to achieve spectacular results had started to decrease even prior to the pandemic.

From these, I think that nonviolent resistance will remain as effective in the future as it has been in the past because of certain factors. First, technology is making it easier to get information about events that were not reported and because the internet will continue to expand, more people will continue consuming news on online platforms like newspaper websites and social media. For instance, people in Kenya can read about and get inspired and learn from the deeds of people in the United States. In addition, with open access to new communication channels, people get to and will continue to connect with others who they view as likeminded and because elites cannot control information as easily as they once did, information about regular people may be found easily on these online platforms. Lastly, many people in society have come to value fairness, safeguarding of human rights an avoiding unnecessary violence. This shift has increased popular interest in civil resistance as a method to champion for human rights and can only continue to do so making nonviolent resistance to remain as effective in the future as it has in the past.

In my opinion, political nonviolence will continue to maintain its efficacy in the future, although this may vary depending on specific contexts and circumstances. This is due to its proven track record of success. Erica Chenoweth analyzed nonviolent movements between 1900 and 2006 and found that they were more likely to succeed than violent ones, with double the probability (Nepstad 342). Furthermore, nonviolent movements had a greater chance of promoting democratic transitions and achieving lasting transformations. Therefore, nonviolent resistance offers inherent advantages over violent resistance.The effectiveness of nonviolence can be influenced by various factors. According to Sharon Erickson Nepstad’s research on the Arab Spring, the success of nonviolent movements depends largely on the loyalty or defection of the military. For instance, military defections played a crucial role in removing Mubarak from power in Egypt, but in Syria, the military stayed loyal to Assad’s regime and suppressed nonviolent movements (Hinnebusch et al., 477). In Bahrain, the lack of complete success for the peaceful protests could be attributed to internal divisions among the armed forces. Therefore, the attitudes and actions of key actors, specifically those in the military, can significantly impact the effectiveness of nonviolence.

The level of repression that a nonviolent movement encounters could impact its effectiveness. According to Nepstad’s research on Syria, movements that face brutal oppression from regimes such as Assad’s might resort to violence instead of nonviolence, which could hinder their success (Nepstad 340). The success of nonviolent resistance could be influenced by the extent of repression and the methods employed by those in power to suppress dissent.The future effectiveness of political nonviolence could be impacted by shifts in power dynamics and changing political conflicts. However, the success of nonviolent resistance movements can be sustained through adapting strategies and tactics, as discussed by Erica Chenoweth in an article that addresses the challenges of rising state repression and technological advances. For instance, social media and other innovative approaches can be employed to mobilize and maintain nonviolent resistance movements.

Erica Chenoweth stresses in her article on the future of nonviolent resistance that the adaptability of movements is crucial in navigating evolving political conflicts and power dynamics. Given today’s technological advancements and increasing state oppression, nonviolent resistance faces both unique challenges and opportunities. Strategies such as social media mobilization and digital organization are effective means of sustaining nonviolent resistance movements in the future. Political nonviolence can be enhanced with the aid of social media platforms and technological innovations. Social media platforms possess the ability to enable communication, coordination, and mobilization efforts, making them a potent tool. Activists use these tools to disseminate information and organize campaigns on a large scale (Groshek et al. 345). The use of social media enables nonviolent resistance movements to rapidly circulate messages and images to generate global support. The Arab Spring witnessed the efficient use of social media in mobilising and coordinating protests, which also increased global awareness about these movements.


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