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About the Course

In this course we will examine a number of historical and contemporary cases, theories, and perspectives on the use of nonviolent civil resistance. We will consider the strengths and weaknesses of this method of social change, particularly in the context of achieved outcomes, as well as its effects on those committed to this method of struggle. The past two decades have witness a number of nonviolent revolutions, some ending in triumph, as demonstrated in Serbia and Czechoslovakia, some petering out as with the global Occupy movement, while still others, such as those in Egypt and Syria, ending in renewed tyranny and bloodshed. People have always tried to make positive changes in their communities and societies, but they have only been organizing into recognizable social movements for about three-hundred years. Most of the time, attention is paid to those actors that prioritized the place of violence as key to their struggles. Nevertheless, there is a long tradition of peace and nonviolent movements that have also worked for change resulting in innovations in both strategies and tactics of nonviolent civil resistance, as well as the development of a significant body of scholarship on social movements and activism.

It is recommended that students have completed PACS 2500 before taking this course.


Previous PACS 3870 Syllabus

Class Attributes

  • This course counts for Arts & Sciences General Education: Distribution-Social Sciences

  • This course counts under Functional Area IV for International Affairs Majors

  • This course counts as an elective for students registered for the PACS Certificate


  • This course is not currently offered.