Category: Essentials

Nonviolence: The Only Road to Freedom

By. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The year 1966 brought with it the first public challenge to the philosophy and strategy of nonviolence from within the ranks of the civil rights movement. Resolutions of self-defense and Black Power sounded forth from our friends and brothers. At the same time riots erupted in several major…
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September 5, 2017 0

“Give Us the Ballot, We Will Transform the South”

By: Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In this speech, King makes a significant point: “avoid the temptation of being victimized with a psychology of victors.” Gandhi, too, was concerned to avoid triumphalism. . . .  Mr. Chairman, distinguished platform associates, fellow Americans. Three years ago the Supreme Court of this nation rendered in simple,…
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September 5, 2017 0

Beyond Vietnam

By: Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Mr. Chairman, ladies and gentlemen, I need not pause to say how very delighted I am to be here tonight, and how very delighted I am to see you expressing your concern about the issues that will be discussed tonight by turning out in such large numbers. I…
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August 30, 2017 0

My Pilgrimage to Nonviolence

By: Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. On 10 July 1959, Christian Century editor Harold Fey asked King to write an article for “How My Mind Has Changed,” a series of “statements by significant thinkers” reflecting their intellectual and spiritual development over the previous ten years. In this essay, King stresses the academic influences that have led…
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August 30, 2017 0

Letter from Birmingham Jail

By: Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 16 April 1963 My Dear Fellow Clergymen: While confined here in the Birmingham city jail, I came across your recent statement calling my present activities “unwise and untimely.” Seldom do I pause to answer criticism of my work and ideas. If I sought to answer all the criticisms…
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August 30, 2017 0

Anticipating Fear

By: Mary Elizabeth King Ku Klux Klan rally on the Louisiana State Capitol steps in Baton Rouge in the 1960s. State Library of Louisiana Historic Photograph Collection. Black History Month has many meanings. For me, it is a time to remember the tremendous contribution African Americans have made to the building of the United States—as…
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August 30, 2017 0

A Manual For A New Era of Direct Action

By: George Lakey originally published on Waging Nonviolence. Movement manuals can be useful. Marty Oppenheimer and I found that out in 1964 when civil rights leaders were too busy to write a manual but wanted one. We wrote “A Manual for Direct Action” just in time for Mississippi Freedom Summer. Bayard Rustin wrote the forward. Some…
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August 15, 2017 0

Weapons of Mass Democracy

By: Stephen Zunes Aminatou Haidar, center, is a Sahrawi human-rights defender, activist, and former political prisoner (1978-91). This photo was taken in 2006, when Haidar and other political prisoners were released by Moroccan authorities after pressure by human rights organizations. Sahrawi is a term for a group of Hassaniya speaking Arab-Berber Bedouin tribes traditionally located…
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July 31, 2017 0

Agents of Change and Nonviolent Action

By: Hardy Merriman Nonviolent action is a way for ordinary people to fight for their rights, freedom, and justice. It is frequently associated with moral or ethical nonviolence, but I will address it here as a distinct phenomenon, separate from any moral or ethical underpinnings, to expand on how it works as a pragmatic way…
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June 9, 2017 0

Strategic Nonviolent Struggle: A Training Manual, in Nonviolent Transformation of Conflict–Africa

By: Christopher A. Miller Goals and Themes: Pragmatism or Principles Thus far, nonviolent struggle has been discussed strictly in political and pragmatic terms. Nonviolent action is commonly confused with or incorrectly substituted for nonviolence. Although the two terms are not mutually exclusive, the fundamental differences between them should be noted. Nonviolence is a belief in…
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June 8, 2017 0