Laughtivism: Fighting Authoritarian Regimes with the Power of Humor

Date: 

Monday, March 6, 2017, 4:30pm to 6:00pm

Location: 

Carr Center Conference room R-219

 

How do you start, build, and complete a peaceful revolution?  How do we fight oppression and violence? Why were the Serbian and Arab Spring revolutionaries able to topple deep-seated autocrats while the American Occupy movement failed to achieve its stated goals? What are the application of rules for 'people power' movements in different environments - from autocracies to democracies?

Join us on Monday, March 6th, as Srdja Popovic looks at how past youth movements have successfully toppled dictatorships, pointing to the importance of unity, planning, humor and discipline, and explaining the difference between "complete" and "incomplete" revolutions.

Some starting points?

  • Use the internet, but use it wisely.
  • Rely on humor and slogans, and pick the battles you know you can win.
  • And most important: stick to the vision that can unite, rather than divide the constituency you try to mobilize.

About Srdja Popovic:

srdjapSrdja Popovic was one of the founders of the Serbian nonviolent resistance group Otpor! Otpor!’s campaign against Serbian president Slobodan Milosovic was successful in October 2000 when thousands of protestors took over the Serbian Parliament. After the revolution, Popovic served a term as a member of the Serbian National Assembly.

In 2003, Popovic and other ex-Otpor! activists started the non-profit the Centre for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS). CANVAS has worked with activists from 46 different countries, including Zimbabwe, Burma, Iran, and Venezuela, spreading knowledge of the nonviolent strategies and tactics used by Otpor!. Recently, CANVAS worked with the April 6 Movement, a key group in the 2011 Egyptian uprising.

In November 2011, Foreign Policy Magazine listed Srdja Popovic as one of the "Top 100 Global Thinkers" of 2011 for inspiring the Arab Spring protesters.  In 2012 he was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. In 2014 he was listed as a “Young Global Leader” by the World Economic Forum in Davos.

Read More: Meet Srdja Popovic, the secret architect of global revolution