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Brownell has been involved in a seven year campaign which succeeded in protecting half a million acres of Liberia's tropical rainforest from the Southeast Asia-based Golden Veroleum company, which had been granted t the right by the government to clear and use the land to grow palm oil. He took up the cause of the indigenous community in Sinoe County whose forests and cultural sites were being destroyed by the company. The article outlines how the campaign succeeded and Brownell's wider role in creating the Alliance for Rural Democracy throughout Liberia to work for environmental justice. He had been forced by death threats to move with his family to the USA.
Blain traces the vital role women played in shaping Black nationalist politics between the 1920s and 1960s. It is addressed to anyone wanting to better understand the history of race, empire, and imperialism in the twentieth century.
https://iycoalition.org/what-is-african-feminism-an-introduction/; https://thedailyaztec.com/90741/opinion/african-feminism-is-on-the-rise/ and https://www.msafropolitan.com/2017/12/what-is-african-feminism-actually.html
Focus on examples from Nigerian, Sierra Leone and Liberian civil wars over several decades.
Brownell took up the case of indigenous people living in the rainforest against abusive violence and imprisonment for resisting the destruction of their environment and cultural monuments by the Southeast Asian agro-industrial company Golden Veroleum (GVL) planning to grow palm oil. Brownell's seven-year campaign invoked help from global NGOs to support a complaint to the Roundtable on sustainable Palm Oil, which froze GVL's expansion. He succeeded in saving over half a million acres of rainforest, but he had to flee to the US. He has also established a rural network - the Alliance for Rural Democracy - throughout Liberia to work form environmental justice.
Press compares peaceful civil resistance in Kenya, Sierra Leone and Liberia to explore the impact of different levels of repression. In Kenya increasing open confrontation with the regime from the 1980s led to a 'culture of resistance' and the ousting of the ruling party in the election of 2002. In Sierra Leone activists faced both repression and the impact of the civil war. In Liberia, where repression was harshest, there was nevertheless resistance by journalists, women, students, the Catholic Church and others to both Samuel Doe and later Charles Taylor.
See also: ‘Civil Resistance of Ordinary People against Brutal Regimes in Africa: Cases of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Kenya’, International Center on Nonviolent Conflict.
This link offers a 56-minute video and transcript of the webinar led by Robert Press on the same topic.
The authors examine how far peace movements can stop wars, summarizing a number of attempts to do so in the past – for example in the 1905 conflict between Norway and Sweden – as well as more recent better known movements: against the Vietnam War, and against the Iraq wars of both 1991 and 2003. Their case studies include the movement to resist US support for the Contras in Nicaragua in the 1980s, and the Women in White in Liberia 2002-2003.
A Guide to Civil Resistance
The online version of Vol. 1 of the bibliography was made possible due to the generous support of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC). ICNC is an independent, non-profit educational foundation that develops and encourages the study and use of civilian-based, nonmilitary strategies aimed at establishing and defending human rights, democratic self-rule and justice worldwide.
For more information about ICNC, please see their website.
The online version of Vol. 2 of the bibliography was made possible due to the generous support of The Network for Social Change. The Network for Social Change is a group of individuals providing funding for progressive social change, particularly in the areas of justice, peace and the environment.
For more information about The Network for Social Change, please visit their website.