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Wed, Jun 25, 2008

Nonviolent Action Manuals from CANVAS

The Center for Applied NonViolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS), established in 2003, has developed two very informative and readable guides to engaging in nonviolent struggle. CANVAS trainers and consultants are world-wide recognized experts from Serbia, Georgia, Ukraine and South Africa, with experience in battling for democracy in their own countries. The guides, downloadable as pdfs, provide practical advice based on experience in the field.
The first item, entitled Nonviolent Struggle - 50 Crucial Points is fully illustrated (contributing to its hefty download size of almost 8 MB) and available in English, Serbian, Spanish, French and Persian languages. As the summary explains, the book is very pragmatic:

“The focus is firmly on practical questions. Crucial points about waging strategic nonviolent struggle appear as ‘how to’ questions:
- How do you plan symbolic public actions successfully with just a few supports?
- How do you recruit, train, and retain pro-reform activists?
- How do you manage scarce assets, such as volunteers and material resources?
- How do you plan your campaign and run it with constant feedback-loop management?
- How do you prepare to overcome the powerful influence of fear?
- How do you minimize the effectiveness of repressive mechanisms, including contaminants, surveillance and police repression?”

The second item, the CANVAS Core Curriculum Students Book, is organized in a workshop format, and each chapter serves as a lesson plan. These lesson plans were created, tested and refined by the authors through their experience leading workshops. The curriculum contains helpful graphics, tips, and important notes to make sure that valuable information is retained. Currently only the student manual is available, but future plans include the trainers manual as well.
Here’s the table of contents from the Core Curriculum:
1. The First Step: The Vision of Tomorrow
2. Power in Society: Models and Sources of Power
3. Pillars of Support
4. Obedience
5. Activating Nonviolent Power: Mechanisms of Change in Nonviolent Action
6. Activating Nonviolent Power: Methods of Nonviolent Action
7. Strategy and Principles of Nonviolent Struggle
8. Planning Methodologies: The Power Graph
9. Impacting Audiences and Communicating Messages
10. Communication Tools and the Types and Categories of Targeted
11. Managing a Movement: Leadership
12. Managing a Movement: Dilemma Actions
13. Fear and Overcoming the Effects of Fear
14. Contaminants to Nonviolent Struggle and Security Culture
15. Plan Format

FYI, Trainers from CANVAS will be hosting a pre-conference training prior to the PJSA conference entitled Building Cultures of Peace that is occurring September 11-14, 2008 at Portland State University, in Portland, Oregon.


Posted by: Bill Warters on 2008 06 25 | Filed under Learning Objects  

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