He argued that conscience can be a higher authority than government. But it wasn’t until King came along that the essay became truly important in the U. Vietnam War protestors also came to use its ideas, and others. The writer’s jailer recalled that he had just reached home for the evening when a messenger told him that a woman had appeared. Thoreau’s tax." He remembered that she was wearing a veil.
“Thoreau was the first American to define and use civil disobedience as a means of protest.” That's according to Brent Powell. Leo Tolstoy was important to spreading those ideas in continental Europe. Thoreau was “ignored in his own lifetime.” This was despite his global influence later. It’s not even known exactly who paid his taxes for him. This story was told during an interview 50 years after the incident.
Political dissent has a long and vibrant history in America — a history practically as old as the United States themselves.
So old, in fact, that peaceful protest is a right protected by the Constitution itself (so don’t let anyone tell you differently!
By now, you’ve heard the chants: “ain’t no power like the power of the people, ‘cause the power of the people don’t stop,” and “el pueblo unido jamás será vencido” (“the people united will never be defeated,”) and still others.
And while the streets of cities large and small, all over the United States and the world, have been a tad more filled than usual lately, the fact is that protesting is nothing new.
Because although it might feel like it sometimes, we’re definitely not alone at this moment in history.
Here are 12 titles to add to your civil disobedience reading list.
In the 1970s Davis was prosecuted for conspiracy involving the armed take-over of a California courtroom, though she was later acquitted in a federal trial — and her essay collection, uses this event as a jumping off point for discussing the experience of the political prisoner, and how incarceration has historically been used as a tool of the state to marginalize and silence political dissenters., connects the theories and philosophies of social justice with actual activist practices in order to demonstrate how change is possible in the real world.
Published this past December and pulling on first-hand examples from the global experiences of Oxfam, one of the world's largest social justice NGOs, this book acts like a practical guide for how to change the world.