Gene Sharp’s From Dictatorship To Democracy. Appendices

Appendix One

The Methods Of Nonviolent Action

The Methods Of Nonviolent Protest And Persuasion

Formal Statements

1. Public speeches

2. Letters of opposition or support

3. Declarations by organizations and institutions

4. Signed public statements

5. Declarations of indictment and intention

6. Group or mass petitions

Communications With A Wider Audience

7. Slogans, caricatures, and symbols

8. Banners, posters, and displayed communications

9. Leaflets, pamphlets, and books

10. Newspapers and journals

11. Records, radio, and television

12. Skywriting and earthwriting

Group Representations

13. Deputations

14. Mock awards

15. Group lobbying

16. Picketing

17. Mock elections

Symbolic Public Acts

18. Display of flags and symbolic colors

19. Wearing of symbols

20. Prayer and worship

21. Delivering symbolic objects

22. Protest disrobings

23. Destruction of own property

24. Symbolic lights

25. Displays of portraits

26. Paint as protest

27. New signs and names

28. Symbolic sounds

29. Symbolic reclamations

30. Rude gestures

Pressures On Individuals

31. “Haunting” officials

32. Taunting officials

33. Fraternization

34. Vigils

Drama And Music

35. Humorous skits and pranks

36. Performance of plays and music

37. Singing


38. Marches

39. Parades

40. Religious processions

41. Pilgrimages

42. Motorcades

Honoring The Dead

43. Political mourning

44. Mock funerals

45. Demonstrative funerals

46. Homage at burial places

Public Assemblies

47. Assemblies of protest or support

48. Protest meetings

49. Camouflaged meetings of protest

50. Teach-ins

Withdrawal And Renunciation

51. Walk-outs

52. Silence

53. Renouncing honors

54. Turning one’s back

The Methods Of Social Noncooperation

Ostracism Of Persons

55. Social boycott

56. Selective social boycott

57. Lysistratic nonaction

58. Excommunication

59. Interdict

Noncooperation With Social Events, Customs, And Institutions

60. Suspension of social and sports activities

61. Boycott of social affairs

62. Student strike

63. Social disobedience

64. Withdrawal from social institutions

Withdrawal From The Social System

65. Stay-at-home

66. Total personal noncooperation

67. Flight of workers 68. Sanctuary

69. Collective disappearance

70. Protest emigration (hijrat)

The Methods Of Economic Noncooperation:

(1) Economic Boycotts

Action By Consumers

71. Consumers’ boycott

72. Nonconsumption of boycotted goods

73. Policy of austerity

74. Rent withholding

75. Refusal to rent

76. National consumers’ boycott

77. International consumers’ boycott

Action By Workers And Producers

78. Workmen’s boycott

79. Producers’ boycott

Action By Middlemen

80. Suppliers’ and handlers’ boycott

Action By Owners And Management

81. Traders’ boycott

82. Refusal to let or sell property

83. Lockout

84. Refusal of industrial assistance

85. Merchants’ “general strike”

Action By Holders Of Financial Resources

86. Withdrawal of bank deposits

87. Refusal to pay fees, dues, and assessments

88. Refusal to pay debts or interest

89. Severance of funds and credit

90. Revenue refusal

91. Refusal of a government’s money

Action By Governments

92. Domestic embargo

93. Blacklisting of traders

94. International sellers’ embargo

95. International buyers’ embargo

96. International trade embargo

The Methods Of Economic Noncooperation:

(2) The Strike

Symbolic Strikes

97. Protest strike

98. Quickie walkout (lightning strike)

Agricultural Strikes

99. Peasant strike

100. Farm workers’ strike

Strikes By Special Groups

101. Refusal of impressed labor

102. Prisoners’ strike

103. Craft strike

104. Professional strike

Ordinary Industrial Strikes

105. Establishment strike

106. Industry strike

107. Sympathetic strike

Restricted Strikes

108. Detailed strike

109. Bumper strike

110. Slowdown strike

111. Working-to-rule strike

112. Reporting “sick” (sick-in)

113. Strike by resignation

114. Limited strike

115. Selective strike

Multi-industry Strikes

116. Generalized strike

117. General strike

Combinations Of Strikes And Economic Closures

118. Hartal

119. Economic shutdown

The Methods Of Political Noncooperation

Rejection Of Authority

120. Withholding or withdrawal of allegiance

121. Refusal of public support

122. Literature and speeches advocating resistance

Citizens’ Noncooperation With Government

123. Boycott of legislative bodies

124. Boycott of elections

125. Boycott of government employment and positions

126. Boycott of government departments, agencies and other bodies

127. Withdrawal from government educational institutions

128. Boycott of government-supported organizations

129. Refusal of assistance to enforcement agents

130. Removal of own signs and placemarks

131. Refusal to accept appointed officials

132. Refusal to dissolve existing institutions

Citizens’ Alternatives To Obedience

133. Reluctant and slow compliance

134. Nonobedience in absence of direct supervision

135. Popular nonobedience

136. Disguised disobedience

137. Refusal of an assemblage or meeting to disperse

138. Sitdown

139. Noncooperation with conscription and deportation

140. Hiding, escape and false identities

141. Civil disobedience of “illegitimate” laws

Action By Government Personnel

142. Selective refusal of assistance by government aides

143. Blocking of lines of command and information

144. Stalling and obstruction

145. General administrative noncooperation

146. Judicial noncooperation

147. Deliberate inefficiency and selective noncooperation by enforcement agents

148. Mutiny

Domestic Governmental Action

149. Quasi-legal evasions and delays

150. Noncooperation by constituent governmental units

International Governmental Action

151. Changes in diplomatic and other representation

152. Delay and cancellation of diplomatic events

153. Withholding of diplomatic recognition

154. Severance of diplomatic relations

155. Withdrawal from international organizations

156. Refusal of membership in international bodies

157. Expulsion from international organizations

The Methods Of Nonviolent Intervention

Psychological Intervention

158. Self-exposure to the elements

159. The fast (a) Fast of moral pressure (b) Hunger strike (c) Satyagrahic fast

160. Reverse trial

161. Nonviolent harassment

Physical Intervention

162. Sit-in

163. Stand-in

164. Ride-in

165. Wade-in

166. Mill-in

167. Pray-in

168. Nonviolent raids

169. Nonviolent air raids

170. Nonviolent invasion

171. Nonviolent interjection

172. Nonviolent obstruction

173. Nonviolent occupation

Social Intervention

174. Establishing new social patterns

175. Overloading of facilities

176. Stall-in

177. Speak-in

178. Guerrilla theater

179. Alternative social institutions

180. Alternative communication system

Economic Intervention

181. Reverse strike

182. Stay-in strike

183. Nonviolent land seizure

184. Defiance of blockades

185. Politically motivated counterfeiting

186. Preclusive purchasing

187. Seizure of assets

188. Dumping

189. Selective patronage

190. Alternative markets

191. Alternative transportation systems

192. Alternative economic institutions

Political Intervention

193. Overloading of administrative systems

194. Disclosing identities of secret agents

195. Seeking imprisonment

196. Civil disobedience of “neutral” laws

197. Work-on without collaboration

198. Dual sovereignty and parallel government

Appendix Two

Acknowledgements And Notes On The History Of 

From Dictatorship to Democracy

I have incurred several debts of gratitude while writing the original edition of this essay. Bruce Jenkins, my Special Assistant in 1993, made an inestimable contribution by his identification of problems in content and presentation. He also made incisive recommendations for more rigorous and clearer presentations of difficult ideas (especially concerning strategy), structural reorganization, and editorial improvements.

I am also grateful for the editorial assistance of Stephen Coady. Dr. Christopher Kruegler and Robert Helvey offered very important criticisms and advice. Dr. Hazel McFerson and Dr. Patricia Parkman provided information on struggles in Africa and Latin America, respectively. However, the analysis and conclusions contained therein are solely my responsibility.

In recent years special guidelines for translations have been developed, primarily due to Jamila Raqib’s guidance and to the lessons learned from earlier years. This has been necessary in order to ensure accuracy in languages in which there has earlier been no established clear terminology for this field.

“From Dictatorship to Democracy” was written at the request of the late U Tin Maung Win, a prominent exile Burmese democrat who was then editor of Khit Pyaing (The New Era Journal).

The preparation of this text was based over forty years of re- search and writing on nonviolent struggle, dictatorships, totalitarian systems, resistance movements, political theory, sociological analysis, and other fields.

I could not write an analysis that had a focus only on Burma, as I did not know Burma well. Therefore, I had to write a generic analysis.

The essay was originally published in installments in Khit Pyaing in Burmese and English in Bangkok, Thailand in 1993. Afterwards it was issued as a booklet in both languages (1994) and in Burmese again (1996 and 1997). The original booklet editions from Bangkok were issued with the assistance of the Committee for the Restoration of Democracy in Burma.

It was circulated both surreptitiously inside Burma and among exiles and sympathizers elsewhere. This analysis was intended only for use by Burmese democrats and various ethnic groups in Burma that wanted independence from the Burman-dominated central government in Rangoon. (Burmans are the dominant ethnic group in Burma.)

I did not then envisage that the generic focus would make the analysis potentially relevant in any country with an authoritarian or dictatorial government. However, that appears to have been the perception by people who in recent years have sought to translate and distribute it in their languages for their countries. Several persons have reported that it reads as though it was written for their country.

The SLORC military dictatorship in Rangoon wasted no time in denouncing this publication. Heavy attacks were made in 1995 and 1996, and reportedly continued in later years in newspapers, radio, and television. As late as 2005, persons were sentenced to seven-year prison terms merely for being in possession of the banned publication.

Although no efforts were made to promote the publication for use in other countries, translations and distribution of the publication began to spread on their own. A copy of the English language edition was seen on display in the window of a bookstore in Bangkok by a student from Indonesia, was purchased, and taken back home. There, it was translated into Indonesian, and published in 1997 by a major Indonesian publisher with an introduction by Abdurrahman Wahid. He was then head of Nadhlatul Ulama, the largest Muslim organization in the world with thirty-five million members, and later President of Indonesia. During this time, at my office at the Albert Einstein Institution we only had a handful of photocopies from the Bangkok English language booklet. For a few years we had to make copies of it when we had enquiries for which it was relevant. Later, Marek Zelaskiewz, from California, took one of those copies to Belgrade during Milosovic’s time and gave it to the organization Civic Initiatives. They translated it into Serbian and published it. When we visited Serbia after the collapse of the Milosevic regime we were told that the booklet had been quite influential in the opposition movement.

Also important had been the workshop on nonviolent struggle that Robert Helvey, a retired US Army colonel, had given in Budapest, Hungary, for about twenty Serbian young people on the nature and potential of nonviolent struggle. Helvey also gave them copies of the complete The Politics of Nonviolent Action. These were the people who became the Otpor organization that led the nonviolent struggle that brought down Milosevic.

We usually do not know how awareness of this publication has spread from country to country. Its availability on our web site in recent years has been important, but clearly that is not the only factor. Tracing these connections would be a major research project.

“From Dictatorship to Democracy” is a heavy analysis and is not easy reading. Yet it has been deemed to be important enough for at least twenty-eight translations (as of January 2008) to be prepared, although they required major work and expense.

Translations of this publication in print or on a web site include the following languages: Amharic (Ethiopia), Arabic, Azeri (Azerbai- jan), Bahasa Indonesia, Belarusian, Burmese, Chin (Burma), Chinese (simplified and traditional Mandarin), Dhivehi (Maldives), Farsi (Iran), French, Georgian, German, Jing Paw (Burma), Karen (Burma), Khmer (Cambodia), Kurdish, Kyrgyz (Kyrgyzstan), Nepali, Pashto (Afghanistan and Pakistan), Russian, Serbian, Spanish, Tibetan, Tigrinya (Eritrea), Ukrainian, Uzbek (Uzbekistan), and Vietnamese. Several others are in preparation.

Between 1993 and 2002 there were six translations. Between 2003 and 2008 there have been twenty-two.  The great diversity of the societies and languages into which translations have spread support the provisional conclusion that the persons who initially encounter this document have seen its analysis to be relevant to their society.

January 2008

Albert Einstein Institution

Boston, Massachusetts

Gene Sharp

Appendix Three

A Note About Translations And Reprinting Of This Publication

To facilitate dissemination of this publication it has been placed in the public domain. That means that anyone is free to reproduce it or disseminate it.

The author, however, does have several requests that he would like to make, although individuals are under no legal obligation to follow such requests.

• The author requests that no changes be made in the text, either additions or deletions, if it is reproduced.

• The author requests notification from individuals who intend to reproduce this document. Notification can be given to the Albert Einstein Institution (contact information appears in the beginning of this publication immediately before the Table of Contents).

• The author requests that if this document is going to be translated, great care must be taken to preserve the original meaning of the text. Some of the terms in this publication will not translate readily into other languages, as direct equivalents for “nonviolent struggle” and related terms may not be available. Thus, careful consideration must be given to how these terms and concepts are to be translated so as to be understood accurately by new readers.

For individuals and groups that wish to translate this work, the Albert Einstein Institution has developed a standard set of translation procedures that may assist them. They are as follows:

• A selection process takes place to select a translator. Candidates are evaluated on their fluency in both English and the language into which the work will be translated. Candidates are also evaluated on their general knowledge surrounding the subject area and their understanding of the terms and concepts present in the text.

• An evaluator is selected by a similar process. The evaluator’s job is to thoroughly review the translation and to provide feedback and criticism to the translator. It is often better if the translator and evaluator do not know the identities of each other.

• Once the translator and evaluator are selected, the translator submits a sample translation of two or three pages of the text, as well as a list of a number of significant key terms that are present in the text.

• The evaluator evaluates this sample translation and presents feedback to the translator.

• If major problems exist between the translator’s sample translation and the evaluator’s evaluation of that translation, then either the translator or the evaluator may be replaced, depending upon the judgement of the individual or group that is sponsoring the translation. If minor problems exist, the translator proceeds with the full translation of the text, keeping in mind the comments of the evaluator.

• Once the entire text is translated, the evaluator evaluates the entire text and gives feedback to the translator.

• Once the translator has considered this feedback and made any necessary changes, the final version of the text is complete and the translated book is ready to be printed and distributed.

For Further Reading

1. The Anti-Coup by Gene Sharp and Bruce Jenkins. Boston: The Albert Einstein Institution, 2003.

2. Sharp’s Dictionary of Power and Struggle: Language of Civil Resistance in Conflicts by Gene Sharp. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

3. On Strategic Nonviolent Conflict: Thinking About the Funda- mentals by Robert L. Helvey. Boston: The Albert Einstein Institu- tion, 2002.

4. The Politics of Nonviolent Action (3 vols.) by Gene Sharp. Boston: Extending Horizons Books, Porter Sargent Publishers, 1973.

5. Self-Liberation by Gene Sharp with the assistance of Jamila Raqib. Boston: The Albert Einstein Institution, 2010.

6. Social Power and Political Freedom by Gene Sharp. Boston: Extending Horizons Books, Porter Sargent Publishers, 1980.

7. There Are Realistic Alternatives by Gene Sharp. Boston: The Albert Einstein Institution, 2003.

8. Waging Nonviolent Struggle: 20th Century Practice and 21st Century Potential by Gene Sharp. Boston: Extending Horizons Books, Porter Sargent Publishers, 2005.

For order information, please contact:

The Albert Einstein Institution

P.O. Box 455

East Boston, MA 02128,

USA Tel: USA +1 617-247-4882

Fax: USA +1 617-247-4035



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