Counterpower: Making Change Happen
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This timely book argues that no major movement has ever been successful without counterpower, or the power that the "have-nots" can use to remove the power of the "haves."
Investigating the history and tactics of major movements of the past and today's global justice and human rights movements, Tim Gee demonstrates what works and what doesn't work. In showing how counterpower can be strategically applied, Gee has created an inspiration for activists and an invaluable resource for teachers and students of social change.
Tim Gee is a writer and communications specialist working with campaigning organizations in the United Kingdom and worldwide.
circumstances of the people make it 43 Counterpower more necessary for us to seek the aid of regular establishments to direct the internal affairs of the country, and our security requires that we should have a body of head men of villages interested in supporting our dominion.’3 But where economic power was not sufficient, the East India Company had no qualms in using physical force to get its way. The Company commanded a large army, which it used to wrest power from local rulers who did not
Economic Counterpower too. He resolved to walk 240 miles (384 kilometers) to the sea, before leading a countrywide move to make and sell salt. The journey began on 12 March, at 6.30am, in Gandhi’s home town. At every village along the way Gandhi was met by supportive people making noise. With each speech, Gandhi implored village officers to resign, and promoted social boycotts against those who refused – leading almost a third of officials in the Surat region to resign during that time. He also
her most hated enemy. In 1984, when coal stocks were at their highest and the winter was over, the government-owned National Coal Board announced that 20,000 mineworkers would be made redundant. By 5 March miners in Yorkshire had successfully balloted to strike, followed by other areas, one by one. Within a day, half of the miners in the country were on strike. Within a fortnight this rose to 80 per cent. Pickets became a regular occurrence outside collieries. In addition – remembering the
South African Coloured People’s Organization, the National Union of South African Students, the South African Students’ Organization, the Congress of South African Students, the South African Youth Congress, the Progressive Party, the Reform Party, the Azanian People’s Organization, the South African Communist Party, the Inkatha Freedom Party, the Black Consciousness Movement, the National Forum and the United Democratic Front – and that is to name only some. Within these organizations were many
co-ordinating. And when you win, the movement does what it can to consolidate gains to prevent their slipping away again. Briefly put: Consciousness is the stage of realizing that there is a problem and creating the conditions for Counterpower. Co-ordination is the stage of building Counterpower through a movement to challenge the problem. Confrontation is the stage when Counterpower is used most intensely, as the movement challenges the target’s power outright. Consolidation is about maintaining