Autumn 2017 Institute

The 2017James Lawson Institute in Los Angeles

October 26-29 Provisional Program

Major Program Themes Arising from film “Nashville” 

 Day 1 Thursday, October 26

Registration 3:00 p.m.

3:30 p.m. Introductions of presenters and facilitators

4:00 p.m. Welcoming group exercise

“Snowballing” the problems and predicaments we bring with us (Philippe Duhamel, Paulina Gonzalez, Daniel Wayne Lee)

10-minute break

5:00 p.m. Establishing community agreements for the institute

(Paulina Gonzalez)

6:00 p.m. Early Dinner

  • Fundamentals of Nonviolent Power

“Social power is the totality of all influences and pressures which can be used by and applied to groups of people, either to attempt to control the behavior of others directly or indirectly, or to accomplish a group objective by group action.”

6:30 p.m. View Steve York film “Nashville”

7:00 p.m. Small-group breakout discussions of film assisted by Facilitators,

with report back to plenary

8:00 p.m. Introduction of the Reverend Dr James M Lawson Jr

8:20 p.m. Remarks by Dr Lawson

Questions and Answers

Day 2 Friday, October 27

8:00-8:50 a.m. Gather for continental breakfast

Power in collective nonviolent action comes from people working together in cooperation

9:00 a.m. Case: Struggling for American Indian nations’ rights and treaties (Tom Hastings) 

10:15 a.m. Refreshments

  • Building Campaigns and Movements

The importance of planning, preparation, and doing power research

10:30 a.m. Case: Building movement in terror-ridden Mississippi (Mary King)

12:00 p.m.   Lunch

1:00 p.m. Doing power research(Molly Gott, Public Accountability Initiative/ LittleSis.org, and Saqib Bhatti, Action Center on Race and the Economy)

2:00 p.m. 10-minute break

2:00 p.m. Practice session on doing power research, with invited local community organization(s). Facilitator: Daniel Wayne Lee 

3:00 p.m. 10-minute break

  • Fundamental Strategy, Tactics, and Methods

Civil resistance and violent struggle are not opposites — the power of a supreme leader comes from the people’s obedience and consent, which can be withdrawn

3:30 p.m. Strategy, tactics, and nonviolent methods (Jamila Raqib)

Systematic sequencing to exert forms of power and apply pressures

 The link between means and ends is realized with nonviolent discipline

 4:30 p.m. Refreshments

5:00 p.m. Small-group breakout exercises assisted by Facilitators

6:30 p.m. Dinner

Evening Program to be Organized by Participants,

and/or Optional 30-minute film and discussion

Day 3 Saturday, October 28th

8:00-8:50 a.m. Gather for continental breakfast

  • Community Resilience and Enabling Success

Asset-based community development, diverse power centers,

networks, and alliances: working for unity

9:00 a.m. Intersectionality and unity in the context of a movement (Cynthia Boaz, Ange-Marie Hancock, and Cristina Jiménez)

10:15 10-minute break

10:30 a.m. Building sustainable alliances (Philippe Duhamel, Austin Belali, and Jeff Ordower)

National, regional, and local alliances often break down, whatever their purposes

Small-group breakout exercises assisted by Facilitators

  12:00 Lunch

1:00 p.m. Agents provocateurs and so-called respect for diversity of tactics (Philippe Duhamel, Austin Belali, and James Hayes)

Small-group breakout exercises assisted by Facilitators

2:30 p.m. 10-minute break
Facing repression, countering militarization

3:00 p.m. Paradox of repression, political jiu-jitsu, and backfire (Lester Kurtz)

4:00 p.m. Case: The Clamshell Alliance and why it matters today (Stephen Zunes)

5:00 p.m. Small-group breakout exercises assisted by Facilitators

Evening Program to be Organized by Participants, and/or Optional 30-minute film and discussion

 Day 4, Sunday October 29th

8:00-8:50 a.m. Gather for continental breakfast

  • Definitions, terminology, language, communications

 By emphasizing the war of independence as the origin of the United States of America, we have disregarded the foundations of nonviolent struggle in the thirteen original colonies, distorting fundamental perceptions of our country’s history and the role of people power in shaping our nation

9:00-10:00 a.m. Recovering United States history and identity

Case: Reconsidering the struggle for independence, 1765–1775 (Hardy Merriman)

10-minute break

Using language in working toward the newly emerging society

10:15 a.m. Language of the new emerging society (The Reverend Dr James Lawson)

11:15 Small breakout groups

12:30 Lunch

Building a movement of movements

1:00 p.m. Lessons Learned (Paulina Gonzalez)

2:00 p.m. Next steps: Building a movement of movements

Panel discussion followed by plenary

Refreshments combined with plenary

3:00 Conclusion (The Reverend Dr James Lawson)

4:00 p.m. Adjournment