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Civil Disobedience

  • The defiance of established authority, religious and secular, social and political, as a world-wide phenomenon may well one day be accounted the outstanding event of the last decade.

    • Hannah Arendt,
    • "Civil Disobedience," Crises of the Republic ()
  • ... the average nonviolent campaign is something like four times larger than the average violent campaign, and, in general, we can see in our data that the nonviolent campaigns are far superior at eliciting active participation.

    • Erica Chenoweth,
    • on studies by her and Maria J. Stephan, in Street Spirit ()
  • When civil resistance campaigns prevail, they tend to enshrine norms of consent. Whereas, with an armed struggle, the norms that are being generated during the campaign generally tend to be more martial values. So when armed campaigns win, usually if they win by the sword they rule by the sword. ... how you fight determines in large part how you're going to rule when you win.

    • Erica Chenoweth,
    • on studies by her and Maria J. Stephan, in Street Spirit ()
  • Over and over again, people had to disobey lawful authority to follow the voice of their conscience. This obedience to God and disobedience to the State has, over and over again, happened throughout history. It is time again to cry out against our 'leaders,' to question (since it is not for us to say that they are evil) whether or not they are sane.

  • We have taken this action, because as women ... we realize that the condition of our sex is so deplorable that it is our duty even to break the law in order to call attention to the reasons why we do so.

  • ... a defiant deed has greater value than unnumerable thousands of words ...

  • ... I always slept in my clothes, for I never knew what might happen. Not even my incarceration in a damp underground dungeon will make me give up the fight in which I am engaged for liberty and for the rights of the working people. To be shut from the sunlight is not pleasant but ... I shall stand firm. To be in prison is no disgrace.

    • Mother Jones,
    • in Linda Atkinson, Mother Jones: The Most Dangerous Woman in America ()
  • When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty.