By Stellan Vinthagen

ISBN-10: 178032054X

ISBN-13: 9781780320540

The U.S. civil rights circulate, anti-apartheid protestors in South Africa, and Gandhi’s fight for Indian freedom are all robust illustrations of nonviolent motion that successfully led to swap. In A conception of Nonviolent motion, Stellan Vinthagen attracts on those examples in addition to a wealthy choice of different old social occasions that symbolize nonviolence activities that mixed resistance and optimistic change.

With this groundbreaking booklet, Vinthagen offers the 1st significant systematic try and boost a concept of nonviolent motion in many years, making this crucial examining for an individual fascinated by the examine of nonviolence events.

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Extra resources for A Theory of Nonviolent Action

Example text

And yet, without having a clear idea of what is and is not unjust, it would be nearly impossible to understand many conflicts. The concept of distributive justice yields one clear definition. Although this concept is quite old, its importance was recently reemphasized by Walton and McKersie (1965). But for us, the clearest and most complete exposition is again by George Homans (1974). 2 For example, factory workers will compare the wages they are paid and the enjoyment they derive from their work (their rewards) with the hours they have to work, their level of responsibility, and the tension it generates (their contributions), and with their seniority, amount of education, and membership in prestigious groups (their investment).

Marx developed a complex theory of social systems, one that was augmented and changed over the years. Yet there is a continuing theme in his writing that ties social conflict to private ownership: social conflicts exist because there are those who own the means of production and those who work for the owners (Marx and Engels [1846] 1947). The goals and interests of these two groups are incompatible, and they are therefore inevitably in conflict with each other. What constitutes the “means of production” depends on the mode of production.

For example, had Kennedy not considered a blockade as a feasible alternative, he might have opted for invading Cuba; had Krushchev foreseen correctly how Kennedy would react, he might have chosen not to install the missiles; had Krushchev not considered the inferior power of the Soviet Union unacceptable, he might have chosen not to act the way he did. Despite these complications, one can draw a clear (abstract) distinction between rational and nonrational action. An action is (objectively) rational if it is reached by an actor who not only followed the steps outlined here but did it with an almost supernatural skill: he or she considered a set of all relevant alternatives, assessed their outcomes correctly, evaluated them in accordance with his or her values (or the values of the group he or she represents), and then chose the action that was the best.

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A Theory of Nonviolent Action by Stellan Vinthagen


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