Revolutionary Nonviolence An Anti-imperialist Approach to Liberation Struggles
September 25, 2018
3:30 pm-5:30 pm
Integrated Sciences Building
UMass Amherst Campus
Resistance Studies Initiative Fall Speaker Series:
Distinguished researchers and activists share critical reflections on resistance issues.
Refreshments will be served
Open to all
Matt Meyer, Senior Research Scholar at the Resistance Studies Initiative, is an internationally recognized author, academic, organizer, and educator who currently serves as National Co-chair of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the oldest interfaith peace and justice group in US history. As former National Chair of the War Resisters League, he is second only to A.J. Muste— “dean of the US peace movement” —in having been elected to the top position of both historic organizations. Based in New York City, Matt is the United Nations representative for the International Peace Research Association, and the Africa Support Network Coordinator for the War Resisters International.
Abstract: The fundamental and existential questions – Resisting What? Resisting How? – come into focus in this overview of the field which serves as the formal launch of Matt Meyer’s tenure as RSI Senior Research Scholar. While in the contemporary USA, emerging movements seem clear in part on who needs to be resisted, Professor Meyer will discuss the need to understand the US more as an empire than a nation-state, one built and maintained on settler-colonial principles. These precepts underscore issues of class and identity in the development of civil society struggles and constructive work, often toxic if not properly understood. Reflecting on lessons of liberation collected over the past half-century—with special emphasis on Mozambique and Western Sahara, on Cuba and Venezuela, on India and Palestine, and on Puerto Rico, Mexico and the process of “internal colonialism”—Meyer will raise questions of the efficacy of “methodology debates” concerning revolution, nonviolence, coalition-building, and the “how-to” dialectics we currently must confront.