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Why do protests fail? A Talk by Micah White '04
Start Date: 3/30/2017Start Time: 7:00 PM
End Date: 3/30/2017End Time: 8:30 PM

Event Description:
Protest is undeniably cool again. And yet, if we evaluate recent protests by their outcome, not their rhetoric, it is increasingly clear that contemporary forms of activism are resulting in diminishing effectiveness. Despite their size, their sophistication and their speed, the last decade of social protests have largely failed to achieve their desired social change objectives. If protest as we know it is broken, how do we fix it?
In this lecture by Micah White, the co-creator of Occupy Wall Street and author of THE END OF PROTEST, we will evaluate various theories for why contemporary protests are failing. Is it a lack of demands? Police repression? Absence of leadership? Or something deeper? Our goal will be to develop a general theory of protest failure grounded in the concrete experience of contemporary activism. Guiding our collective inquiry will be the hope that understanding protest failure will better equip today’s democracy activists for creating positive social change in their lifetimes.
MICAH WHITE '04 is the lifelong activist who co-created Occupy Wall Street, a global social movement, while an editor of Adbusters magazine. While at Swarthmore, he co-founded one of the nation's first student anti-war organizations. Widely recognized as a pioneer of social movement creation, Micah White has been profiled by The New Yorker, The Guardian and Esquire has named him one of the most influential young thinkers alive today. Micah is the author of The End of Protest: A New Playbook for Revolution. Learn more at
Location Information:
*Swarthmore College - Science Center
Room: Science Center 101 - Chang Hou Hall
Contact Information:
Name: Adina Spertus-Melhus
Phone: 224-688-7272
Micah White '04
Open To
The Public

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