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Building Real People Power!

Updated: Mar 2, 2023

by: Barbara Peterson April 13, 2019

Nobel Peace Prize nominee and world-renowned Nonviolent Resistance expert Jamila Raqib is coming to the Portsmouth Library this Thursday, April 18 (6:30-8:00pm). This is a presentation event hosted by Nonviolent Citizen Action, offering free books/pamphlets and materials to attendees, and a Q&A session to follow. Co-hosts of this event are New Hampshire Community Rights Network, Rights & Democracy New Hampshire, and The Resistance Seacoast.

Ms. Raqib is invited by some of the most powerful and prestigious Peace and Human Rights organizations from around the world (The Oslo Freedom Forum, MIT Media Lab, Harvard Kennedy School, United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, TED Talks, Iyad El-Baghdadi and Ahmed Gatnash’s Arab Tyrant Manual Podcast, and to people power and resistance movements all over the world). As Executive Director of the famed Einstein Institution, and Research Affiliate of the Center for International Studies, Jamila Raqib is considered one of the foremost authorities on Nonviolent Resistance. 

“We see people in many countries in many situations that feel there is nothing they can do and … what this work does is show people that they themselves can be responsible for their own future, for their own liberation,” stated Jamila Raqib in the documentary How to Start a Revolution. “While it’s nice to believe that heroes will come and save the day,” says Kalden Alexander, local resident of the Seacoast, “it’s we the people who have to organize ourselves in a way that leverages real power.”

“Many today who are genuinely concerned about the growing attacks on our democracy and environment are continuing to achieve a great deal to protect our freedoms and land, but we could be doing so much more,” says Barbara Peterson, founder and director of Nonviolent Citizen Action, a local grassroots organization whose mission is to provide people the knowledge and skills needed to more equitably distribute power and resources throughout society. “While marches and political lobbying play vital roles in promoting positive change, they are not enough to hold government officials accountable to making the sort of structural and systemic changes needed to institute true equality, liberty, and a sustainable future. We need carefully planned actions that are part of an informed overall strategy so that each of our local protests are enacted and seen to be enacted as part of an organized, unified, massive people’s movement,” Peterson claims.

Building Real People Power will help individuals see what they can do to start developing this type of movement. Keynote speaker Jamila Raqib and the Einstein Institution, founded and formerly headed by the “Father of Strategic Nonviolent Action” Gene Sharp, have worked with groups to fight oppression and authoritarianism in such places as: Serbia, Egypt, Philippines, London, Burma, cities and towns all across the US, countries involved in the fight for independence from the Soviet Union, and in countries involved in the Arab Spring. 

Peterson and Raqib will provide attendees with the knowledge of nonviolent resistance based on some of the most original and respected theoretical understandings of political nonviolent movements as well as first-hand experiences with people power campaigns in the U.S and around the globe.

This event is free of charge and open to the public. Doors will open at 6:15pm, and because of the renown of Ms. Raqib, it may be advisable to arrive a bit early to get a seat.

This is an event you won’t want to miss! For more information, link HERE to the event on Facebook.

What: Building Real People Power: Presentation event with free books/pamphlets and

materials, and a Q&A session to follow.

When: Thursday, April 18, 6:30pm - 8:00pm

Where: Levenson Room of the Portsmouth Library, 175 Parrott Ave

Hosted by: Nonviolent Citizen Action

Co-hosts: New Hampshire Community Rights Network, Rights & Democracy New

Hampshire, and The Resistance Seacoast.

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