I am not a big reader of the comments sections of any paper – In the main they are a collection of crass articles with even crasser comments aimed a angrying up my blood as Grandpa Simpson would say.
That said I did see an article in the Guardian’s Comment is Free section that did pique my interest. It was written by Saeed Kamali Dehghan and titled Iran and the power of small acts of resistance
The article takes its cites a recently published book by Steve Crawshaw and John Jackson: Small Acts of Resistance: How a Bit of Courage, Tenacity and Ingenuity Can Change the World which Denhghan describes as “ an admirable collection of well-chosen, and sometimes under-reported tales of resistance from different countries around the world, including my own home country, Iran.”
I feel a purchase coming on. It sounds like an interesting read But can little acts of resistance work? Can you bring down a brutal regime peacefully?
My initial thought is that in themselves small acts, be it crying Allahu Akbar from a rooftop and such, are not going to bring down a brutal regime but they can certainly help galvanise dissent towards the formation of a larger and wider movement. That may well be a trite view of course!
I have ordered copy now. It may give some food for thought for some less drivelsome posts here... Perhaps time to look back at a protest dear to my heart, that of the Rosenstrasse women and others too…
The authors of the book apparently say: "Some people are ... brave or deluded enough to believe that change is achievable, if enough people only believe that it can be achieved. They think change is worth taking risks for – even when there is no certainty of the outcome. Those are the people who have made extraordinary change possible in the past"
It would be nice to think that this could be applied universally... Perhaps it can