US social movements face many challenges. One of their most troublesome involves the question of nonviolence. Civil disobedience and symbolic protest have characterized many struggles in the US since the Civil Rights era, but conditions have changed. Corporate media has consolidated, the police have militarized, dissent has been largely co-opted and institutionalized, but the strategic tools radicals employ haven’t necessarily kept pace. Our narratives, borrowed from movements of the past, are falling short.
Anarchist educator and author Shon Meckfessel presents his newest work Nonviolence Ain't What It Used To Be and offers new angles on a seemingly intractable debate, introducing ideas that carve out a larger middle-ground between militancy and
Shon Meckfessel has been active in disruptive social movements for nearly twenty-five years, beginning in his native Sacramento, CA. After blocking highways to stop the first Persian Gulf War, he was never again inclined to petitionary protest. He has since researched and participated in social movements across the US, Western and Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Latin America. Shon is the author of Suffled How It Gush: A North American Anarchist in the Balkans as well as numerous essays and articles. He has appeared as a social movement scholar and advocate in the New York Times and on Democracy Now, Al Jazeera, CNN, NPR, BBC, Radio, and Fox News. Shon is a member of the English Faculty at Highline College.