You Say You Want A Revolution: Blueprint for Revolution, by Srdja Popovic

10/01/2017

With a title like Blueprint for Revolution – How to Use Rice Pudding, Lego Men, and Other Nonviolent Techniques to Galvanize Communities, Overthrow Dictators, or Simply Change the World, the bar has been set very high.

 

Serbian political activist Srdja Popovic was a leader of Otpor!, the student movement crucial to the overthrow of Serbian dictator Slobodan Milosevic. He is currently an executive director of the Centre for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS), and travels the world to work with activists and speak on the subject of nonviolent resistance.

 

Popovic’s book makes a strong case for nonviolent resistance, based on a clear understanding of historical cases, government behaviour, and military strategies. Although the title may seem irreverent, this in itself is part of the author’s point: techniques and strategies that may seem laughable can be powerful. Historically speaking, this unexpected approach is often the most potent.

 

This book is an astounding balancing act. The reader never forgets the seriousness of the motivation behind revolutionary acts, but is encouraged to embrace humour and levity as a key strategy. Popovic requires his readers to be practical, to clearly understand what can and cannot be achieved; that practicality then sets the boundaries within which creativity flourishes. Although grounded in a world of terrible crimes and consequences, Blueprint For Revolution repeatedly calls for optimism – which is perhaps the most difficult thing to accomplish.

 

Whether you are actively working for change, interested in a perspective on nonviolent uprising from someone at the heart of a revolution, looking to stimulate some classroom discussion, or desperately in need of a fresh dose of political optimism and inspiration, Blueprint For Revolution is an essential and absorbing read for teens and adults alike.

 

Image: Blueprint for Revolution

Blueprint for Revolution

How to Use Rice Pudding, Lego Men, and Other Nonviolent Techniques to Galvanize Communities, Overthrow Dictators, or Simply Change the World
By Popović, Srđa