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A. 7. Important Reference Works and Websites

Volume One -> A. Introduction to Nonviolent Action -> A. 7. Important Reference Works and Websites
Bartkowski, Maciej J. ; Merriman, Hardy, Civil Resistance, In in Patrick James (ed.) Oxford Bibliographies in International Relations, New York, Oxford University Press, pp. 34-33

Annotated bibliography, with an emphasis on recently published books and articles, compiled by two researchers in the field of nonviolent resistance, organised under useful analytical subheads.  These include: 'Power and People: The Consent-Based View of Political Power', 'Structure, Agency and Civil Resistance Movements',  'Repression, Backfire and Defections', 'External Actors, Civil Resistance and International Law' 'Civil Resistance against Extreme Violence and Violent Nonstate Actors' and Civilian-Based Defense against Foreign Invasion and Coups' d 'Etat'. Ends with a list of multimedia resources.

Available online at

Goodwin, Jeff ; Jasper, James M., The Social Movements Reader: Cases and Concepts, [2003], 2nd edition, Wiley-Blackwell, 2009, pp. 472

McAdam, Doug ; Snow, David A., Readings on Social Movements: Origins, Dynamics and Outcomes, [1997], 2nd edn, New York and Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2010, pp. 821

McCarthy, Ronald M. ; Sharp, Gene, Nonviolent Action: A Research Guide, New York, Garland, 1997, pp. 720

An exhaustive, annotated, bibliography, very strong on earlier history of nonviolent action, but also including many recent nonviolent campaigns up to the mid-1990s. Part I covers cases of nonviolent action. Part II the methods and dynamics of nonviolent action and theories of conflict, power and violence. NB the index is seriously flawed (a correct version should be available on the Albert Einstein Institution website), but it is possible to trace campaigns through the list of contents.

Ness, Immanuel, International Encyclopaedia of Revolution and Protest: 1500 to the present, Wiley-Blackwell, 2009, , 7 volumespp. 4280

Powers, Roger S. ; Vogele, William B. ; Kruegler, Christopher ; McCarthy, Ronald M., Protest, Power and Change. An Encyclopaedia of Nonviolent Action from ACT-UP to Women’s Suffrage, New York, Garland, 1997, pp. 610

Valuable guide to both the theory and practice of nonviolence, summarizing 104 nonviolent campaigns and actions, listing methods of protest, and examining relevant organisations and personalities.

Randle, Michael ; Sharp, Gene, Annotated Bibliography on Training for Nonviolent Action and Civilian-Based Defence, In UNESCO Yearbook on Peace and Conflict Studies, Westport CT and Paris, Greenwood Press and UNESCO, pp. 63-180

Introductory essay by Randle on training and another by Sharp on civilian-based defence.

Snow, David A. ; Soule, Sarah A. ; Kriesi, Hanspieter, The Blackwell Companion to Social Movements, Wiley-Blackwell, 2007, pp. 776

Young, Nigel J., The Oxford International Encyclopedia of Peace, New York, Oxford University Press, 2010, , 4 volumespp. 2848

Although wide ranging in its theoretical approach to peace and in content, the Encyclopedia includes a strong focus on nonviolence, nonviolent action and groups and movements employing nonviolent methods.

Zunes, Stephen ; Merriman, Hardy ; Stephan, Maria, Nonviolent Struggle, In in Denemark, Robert A., The International Studies Encyclopedia, Robert A. Blackwell Publishing, pp. 31-31

Analytical article with extensive references to literature on nonviolent struggle, examining definitions and strategy of nonviolent action, and covering a wide range of relevant topics. These include the Gandhian legacy, comparison of violent and nonviolent struggles, theories of power and dependency relationships, backfire and  security force defections, nonviolent third party intervention, democratization, transnational networks, and collections of case studies and data bases. 

Republished by Oxford Research Encyclopedia of International Studies, International Studies Association and Oxford University Press.

See also: Steinweg, Reiner with Saskia Thorbecke,  Gewaltfreie Aktion, Ziviler Ungehorsam, Sociale Vertedigung  (Nonviolent Action, Civil Disobedience, Social Defence), 2011, online.  It is primarily a bibliography of German writings, but includes some titles in English and other languages.  For more detail on contents and online link see: Vol.2. Addendum 2. German Titles.

Websites recommended

Albert Einstein Institution - ,

This organization was created by Gene Sharp to disseminate knowledge of the basic theory, strategy and tactics of nonviolent resistance (elaborated in his books) and has been a key internet resource for accessing his writings, especially the shorter pamphlets designed to help activists round the world. Gene Sharp died in February 2018 (an obituary is on the website). However, the organization is still promoting his ideas and publications.

Global Nonviolent Action Database - ,

A project of Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania, and includes summaries of nonviolent action campaigns from around the world with additions every week.

International Center on Nonviolent Conflict - ,

The International Center on Nonviolent Conflict provides numerous free sources of information, both about the theory and strategy of civil resistance and about campaigns using various forms of non violent protest around the world. These resources include webinars, videos, translations, monographs and ICNC blogs. The Resources Library has materials in over 70 languages and dialects, and ICNC's Academic Online Curriculum offers resources on over 40 topics. In 2020-21 ICNC collaborated with the American Society of International Law to discuss the possible role of international law in relation to civil resistance. ICNC is proposing a legal doctrine of a 'Right to Assist' democratic and human rights movements, drawing on research by Maria Stephan and Erica Chenoweth on how far external support aids movements.

New Tactics in Human Rights - ,

Includes database of new tactics, tactical notebooks describing particular campaigns, a list of training tools, and monthly ‘online dialogues’.

Peace Insight - ,

Peace Insight, lunched in 2007 by Peace Direct, links local groups engaged in peacebuilding in conflicts around the world - about 2,000 in 2021- with each other and with international bodies.  It also provides expert analysis and commentary on conflicts.

Peace News - ,

Monthly Peace News plus additional material.

Peace News reports on major peace, environmental, anti-racist, social justice and other protests to assert rights or resist oppression.  It also carries critiques of movement, radical political analysis, theoretical debates and book reviews.

Resistance Studies Network - ,

The Resistance Studies Network is a forum for scholars engaging with practices of resistance. The Journal of Resistance Studies (main editors Stellan Vinthagen and Jorgen Johansen) is published by Irene Publishing, University of Gothenburg. It is an international academic journal with a primary, but critical, focus on nonviolent resistance. It includes many articles and debates of theoretical interest, but also carries articles and book reviews relating to specific movements round the world. In 2020 the editors reached an agreement to offer two free e-issues of the journal during the year to members of the International Peace Research Association, the European Peace Research Association and the Peace and Justice Studies Association. The journal also cooperates with the Waging Nonviolence website (see below) and asks authors also to provide shorter and more accessible versions of their JRS contributions, suitable for the activist-oriented users of that website. Visit

Waging Nonviolence - ,

The Waging Nonviolence website provides extensive information about past as well as present movements and protests, and also about key figures in the practice and theory of nonviolent action. It includes discussion of strategy and tactics in campaigning. Between its foundation in 2009 and 2020 the website carried reports from contributors in over 80 countries, giving special emphasis to often under-reported movements in the Global South and to issues not covered in mainstream media.