ESSENTIAL READING AND HOMEWORK

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 is a book written by Srdja Popovic, the founder of the Centre for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS). The book is described on its back cover as “a handbook for anyone who wants to effectively (and peacefully) improve your neighborhood, make a difference in your community, or change the world.”

The first part of the book discusses modern nonviolent revolutions, and the second explains how nonviolent techniques can be put to good use. The book contains eleven chapters, each with a lesson about nonviolent techniques for revolution, including case studies. Popovic writes in the first-person voice, describing his experiences in taking part in and training activists for several revolutions, including the Otpor! movement and the Arab Spring. He references movements that attempted to make changes (successfully and unsuccessfully), such as Occupy Wall Street and Gay Rights Movements. In referencing these movements, Popovic explains the tactics they allude to that make revolutions successful—such as laughtivism and unity—and why they are a better alternative to violence.

BE MORE PIRATE

Be More Pirate was written by entrepreneur and Livity Africa co-founder Sam Conniff. It was originally published in 2018 by Penguin Random House in the United Kingdom and in 2019 by Simon & Schuster in the United States. When the book was launched, Conniff flyposted the office of his UK publisher to advertise the book. The advertisement was not authorised by the publisher, but was said to be similar to the “good trouble” philosophy he talks about in the book. Conniff also projected messages  on the side of the Parliament building addressed to Donald Trump and Theresa May in July 2018, coinciding with the book being picked up by his U.S. publisher.

Conniff writes about how current young generations are challenging and reshaping systems. He draws a comparison between people who are considered do-it-yourselfers, side hustlers, and the Golden Age Pirates. The book offers advice for people who want to rewrite the outdated rules of the 21st Century, using strategies created by pirates like Sir Henry Morgan and Anne Bonney, and shows how they parallel modern entrepreneurs such as Elon Musk and Malala. The book shows how these strategies can be applied to modern life.

FLATPACK DEMOCRACY

The book that sarted it…

Flatpack Democracy, published 2014, describes how a group of local residents in Frome, took control of their town council and set about making politics relevant, effective and fun.

FLATPACK DEMOCRACY 2.0

The book that continued it…

Flatpack Democracy 2.0, published Sept 2019, tells the story of what happened between 2014 and today. It tells how, freed from the shackles of party politics, Independents for Frome swept the board at the local elections of 2015 and 2019. It also draws on the experiences of other places who have gone independent and provides the tools for taking positive action to reclaim local politics.

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