Resources

This reading list is a historical introduction to the idea and practice of non-violence as a viable method of civil disobedience, political resistance, and protest. To study the evolution of the politics of non-violence in the 20th century requires comparison between the different strategies of non-violent political protests emerging in political regimes in the regions of South Asia, South Africa and the USA through the inspired political leadership of transformative leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela.


India

Recommended Texts:

  1. Singh, Upinder. Political Violence in Ancient India. Harvard University Press, 2017. “Introduction”
  2. Losurdo, Domenico. Non-Violence: a History beyond the Myth. Lexington Books, 2015. “From Pacifist Abolitionism to Gandhi and Tolstoy.”
  3. Leo Tolstoy, The Kingdom of God is within you. Read chapters I, II, XI, XII and the section “On Non-Resistance.”
  4. Gandhi, et al. Hind Swaraj and Other Writings. Centenary ed., Cambridge University Press, 2009. Chapter X and Letters to Tolstoy.
  5. Brown, Judith M., and Parel, Anthony. The Cambridge Companion to Gandhi. Cambridge University Press, 2011. Chapters 5, 6, 11, 12.
  6. B.R. Ambedkar. “What Path to Freedom?”
  7. Yengde, Suraj, and Anand Teltumbde. The Radical in Ambedkar: Critical Reflections. Gurgaon, Haryana, India: Allen Lane, an Imprint of Penguin Random House, 2018.

Films to watch:

  1.   “The Making of the Mahatma”, dir. Shyam Benegal, 1996.
  2.  “Gandhi”, dir. Richard Attenborough, 1981.

Martin Luther King and Gandhi

Recommended Texts:

  1. My Trip to the Land of Gandhi“, Martin Luther King.
  2. India Trip, February 3, 1959 to March 18, 1959.”
  3. Account by Lawrence Dunbar Reddick of Press Conference in New Delhi on 10 February 1959.”
  4. Non-Violence.”
  5. Shelby, Tommie, and Brandon M. Terry. To Shape a New World: Essays on the Political Philosophy of Martin Luther King, Jr. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2018. “Showdown for Non-Violence.”
  6. Martin Luther King: Unfulfilled Dreams.
  7. Martin Luther King, Jr. “Letter from Birmingham Jail.”
  8. Martin Luther King, Jr. “Nonviolence and Social Change.”
  9. James Baldwin. “Nobody knows my name: a letter from the South” (Nobody knows my name). “Down at The Cross — Letter from a Region of My Mind” and “Letter to my nephew on one hundred years of the Emancipation.” (The fire next time)
  10. Morrison, Toni. The Source of Self-Regard

Films to Watch:

  1. Selma,” dir.by Ava DuVernay, 2014.
  2.  “King in the Wilderness,” dir. Peter Kunhardt, 2018.
  3. I am not your Negro,” dir. Raoul Peck, 2017.

Mandela and South Africa

Recommended Texts:

  1. Boehmer, Elleke. Nelson Mandela: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford University Press, 2008. Chapter 4 and 8.
  2. Roberts, et al. Civil Resistance and Power Politics: The Experience of Non-Violent Action from Gandhi to the Present. Oxford University Press, 2009. Chapter 13, Tom Lodge, “The Interplay of Non-violent and Violent Action in the Movement against Apartheid in South Africa, 1983-1994.”
  3. Krog, Antjie. Country of My Skull: Guilt, Sorrow, and the Limits of Forgiveness in the New South Africa. 1st ed., Times Books, 1999. Chapters 3, 4, 20, 21.
  4. Tutu, Desmond. No Future without Forgiveness. 1st ed., Doubleday, 1999. Chapters 2 and 11.

Films to watch:

  1. The Death of Apartheid,” dir. Stephen Clarke, Mick Gold, Stewart Lansley, 1995.
  2. Amandla,” dir. Lee Hirsch, 2002.
  3. The Long Walk of Nelson Mandela,” dir. Justin Chadwick, 2013.

Nonviolence and Environmentalism In India

Recommended Texts:

  1. Rangarajan, Mahesh., and K. Sivaramakrishnan. India’s Environmental History. Ranikhet: Bangalore: Permanent Black; Distributed by Orient Blackswan, 2012.
  2. Cederlöf, Gunnel, and Mahesh Rangarajan. At Nature’s Edge: The Global Present and Long-term History. First ed. Oxford Scholarship Online. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2019.
  3. Guha, Ramachandra. How Much Should a Person Consume?: Environmentalism in India and the United States. Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press, 2006.
  4. Guha, Ramachandra. The Unquiet Woods: Ecological Change and Peasant Resistance in the Himalaya. Expanded ed. Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press, 2000.
  5. Patkar, Medha. “Reflections on Satyagraha in Today’s India.” Social Change (New Delhi) 51, no. 1 (2021): 70-79.

Films to watch:

  1. Armstrong, Franny., Nina. Wadia, Arundhati Roy, Spanner Films Ltd, and Cinema Libre Studio. Drowned out. Los Angeles, California: Cinema Libre Studio, 2006.
  2. Shrivastava, Ruchi, Sumit Khanna, Public Service Broadcasting Trust, and Prasar Bharti Corporation. The Man Who Dwarfed the Mountains. The Open Frame. New Delhi, [India]: Public Service Broadcasting Trust, 2015.
  3. ON THE FENCE: Chipko Movement Re-visited,” dir. Pramod Mathur, 1997.
  4. A Narmada Diary, dir. Simantini Dhuru, 1995.

Nonviolence (subject)

Recommended Texts:

  1. Roberts, et al. Civil Resistance and Power Politics: the Experience of Non-Violent Action from Gandhi to the Present. Oxford University Press, 2009.
  2. Kurlansky, Mark. Nonviolence: Twenty-Five Lessons from the History of a Dangerous Idea. Modern Library, 2006.
  3. Nepstad, Sharon Erickson. Nonviolent Struggle: Theories, Strategies, and Dynamics. Oxford University Press USA – OSO, 2015.
  4. Holmes, Robert L., and Predrag Cicovacki. Ethics of Nonviolence: Essays by Robert L. Holmes. Bloomsbury Academic & Professional, 2014.
  5. Schell, Jonathan. The Unconquerable World: Power, Nonviolence, and the Will of the People. 1st ed., Metropolitan Books, 2003.
  6. Chenoweth, Erica. Civil Resistance : What Everyone Needs to Know. Oxford University Press, 2021.

Peace Walk and Reconcilliation in Cambodia

Recommended Texts:

  1. Ghosananda, Maha. (1992). Step by Step: Meditations on Wisdom and Compassion. Berkeley, CA: Parallax Press.
  2. Kittisenee, Napakadol. (2021). Of Dhammacārinī and Rematriation in Post-Genocidal Cambodia. Religions 12: 1089.
  3. Moser-Puangsuwan, Yeshua. (2000). “The Buddha in the Battlefield: Maha Ghosananda Bhikkhu and the Dhammayietra Army of Peace,” edited by G. Simon Harak. Nonviolence for the Third Millennium : Its Legacy and Future. Macon, Ga.: Mercer University Press.
  4. Moser-Puangsuwan, Yeshua. (1998). “One Million Kilometres for Peace: Five Years of Peace Action Walks in Cambodia.” Peace Research 30, no. 2: 48-60.
  5. Ngarm, Soth Plai. (2017). Cambodia Reconciliation: A Reflection on Justice and Reconciliation Issues and Challenges for the Past 25 Years Post War – Peace and Reconciliation. Siem Reap: Center for Peace and Conflict Studies.
  6. Poethig, Kathryn. (2004). “Locating the Transnational in Cambodia’s Dhammayātrā.” In History, Buddhism, and New Religious Movements in Cambodia, edited by John Marston and Elizabeth Guthrie, University of Hawai’i Press: 197–212.
  7. Poethig, Kathryn. (2002). “Movable Peace: Engaging the Transnational in Cambodia’s Dhammayietra.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 41, no. 1: 19–28.
  8. Santidhammo, Bhikkhu. (2007). Maha Ghosananda: The Buddha of the Battlefield. Woodinville, Washington: Atammayatarama Buddhist Monastery.
  9. Skidmore, Monique. (1996). “In the Shade of Bodhi Tree: Dhammayietra and the Re-Awakening of Community in Cambodia.” Crossroads: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 10, no. 1: 1–32.
  10. Walking for Peace in Cambodia: An Interview with Bob Maat. (1995). AMERICA, January 28.

Films to watch:

  1. An Army of Peace, 1996.
  2. Cambodia: Land of Silence, dir. Jakob Gottschau, 2004.
  3. My Cambodia, 2014.
  4. The Serene Life, dir. Alan Channer, 1996.

Prison reform

Recommended Texts:

  1. Brown, Ian. 2007. “South East Asia: Reform and the Colonial Prison” In Cultures of Confinement: A History of the Prison in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Dikötter, F. and Brown, I. (eds.). New York: Cornell University Press, 221-268.
  2. Dikötter, Frank. 2003. “Cultures of confinement: The history of the prison in global context”, IIAS Newsletter, November, 19.
  3.  Pasanno, Ajahn. 2003. The Last Breath. CA: Abhayagiri Buddhist Monastery.

Films to watch:

  1. Inside the Brazilian Prison Run by the Inmates, 2018.
  2. The Dhamma Brothers, dir. Jenny Phillips, 2007.

Vietnam

Recommended Texts:

  1. Chan Khong, Sister. 1993. Learning True Love: How I Learned and Practiced Social Change in Vietnam. Berkeley, California: Parallax Press.
  2. Chapman, John. 2007. “The 2005 Pilgrimage and Return to Vietnam of Exiled Zen Master Thích Nhất Hạnh” In Modernity and Re-enchantment: Religion in Post-revolutionary Vietnam edited by Philip Taylor. Singapore: ISEAS Publishing, 297-341.
  3. Luther King Jr., Martin, “Letter from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. nominating Thich Nhat Hanh for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1967.”
  4. Nhất Hạnh, Thích, “In Search of the Enemy of Man.”
  5. Nhất Hạnh, Thích. 1972. The Path of Return Continues the Journey. New York: Hoa Binh Press.
  6. Nhất Hạnh, Thích. 1967. Vietnam: Lotus in a Sea of Fire. New York: Hill and Wang.
  7. Tworkov, Helen. 1992. Agent of Change: An Interview with bell hooks.

Films to watch:

  1. A Cloud Never Dies,” narrated by Peter Coyote, 2022.
  2. Exclusive interview with Oprah Winfrey, 2010.

Other: