Nonviolence Training

Why do what teacher says?

This exercise is to convey the basic nonviolent understanding of power – that power comes from the obedience of others, and that there are various kinds of sources of power.

Training for what? - it is not all about strategies and tactics

With the new electronic format of The Broken Rifle we want to use the opportunity to also get the WRI network using the forums in our re-developed website. This article will be posted on the WRI forum, we invite people to react to it.

Dealing with gender in training in nonviolence

This article is the result of material published in the Handbook for Nonviolent Campaigns and a session on gender and nonviolence at WRI's International Nonviolence Training Exchange, in Bilbao in October 2008.

It may seem simple and obvious that we want both men and women involved in our struggles against war and injustice. However, if we want to fully utilise people's talents, energy, and insights, we need to apply gender awareness to how we organise ourselves, how we design our campaigns, and how we conduct our trainings for action.

Nonviolence Training for the Campaign to Close the School of the Americas

On November 16, 1989, six Jesuit priests, their co-worker and her teenage daughter were massacred in El Salvador. A U.S. Congressional Task Force verified that those responsible were trained at the U.S. Army School of the Americas (SOA) at Fort Benning, Columbus, Georgia, USA. This is only the most notorious incident in the school's history of providing special training to Latin American military personnel known to have committed atrocities and engaged in torture.

Editorial

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Introduction to the section

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Planning and facilitating nonviolence training requires a range of tasks that a number of people should share.

First, campaign organisers need to be aware of when and what training is needed. Does the group need training in strategic campaign development or gender sensitivity? Is training needed to prepare a new group of people to participate in nonviolent actions or for an experienced group to achieve new skills? Do affinity groups need training in group process?

Forum Theatre

Forum Theatre is a form of roleplaying that can be used for public action, as described in the article Turkey- Building a nonviolent culture or in training. The basic idea is to act out a scenario, perhaps leading to an undesirable conclusion or violence, and then begin acting out the scenario again but this time either a participant in the roleplay or any other observer can shout at 'freeze' and take over a role in the scenario to try to do something differently. The second time new players act out the scenario from the beginning, but when the roleplay is interrupted with 'freeze', the roleplay resumes at the appropriate place - that is the point when someone would do the newly suggested action.

Role playing

Role playing is a simulation exercise in which participants take on roles in a given situation as preparation for encountering a similar situation or evaluating a past one. Roleplaying is used to develop a sense of tactics, individual competence, and group cohesion. The main advantage of roleplaying over other tools is that by its nature it involves people's emotions as well as their intellects in the experience. Because participants are more deeply engaged in roleplaying than they are in discussing a situation, they learn more, and probably more quickly. Roleplays are a versatile tool that can be used for many different purposes, for example: to analyze situations, theories and tactics; to understand people and their roles; to develop insight into the thoughts and feelings of ones “opponents”; to anticipate new situations; to reveal fears and anxieties and other feelings people have about an action; to develop individual and group competence and confidence; and to develop group morale.

Cross spectrum

To help a group determine what is an effective nonviolent action; show the different perceptions on nonviolence; to test or develop specific proposal for effective nonviolent action that the group can agree on

Decision making

Quick decision exercise is used to prepare people to face crisis situations and to get them into the frame of mind in which they will think quickly under stress, focus on key issues, learn to ignore minor ones and to reach action-decisions.

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