The Challenge of Protest in Our Time: Micah White on Social Change Movements, Theories of Revolution, and Moving on from Occupy Wall Street

Source: Justin Campbell, Los Angeles Review of Books, September 17, 2015

….Micah White, along with the cofounder of Adbusters Kalle Lasn, began one of the most powerful social movements of the 21st century with an email — calling all who were concerned about our current political state to combine the tactics of the Tahrir Square uprisings with the Spanish anti-austerity general assemblies and bring their voices in order that they might occupy Wall Street. The name stuck, and soon, the entire world was watching as encampments popped up all over, demonstrating that citizens of all governments were tired of their voices going unheard.  Since then, activists have been asking what effective social movements look like and how social change comes about in a post-Occupy world. This is something Micah has been hard at work thinking about, ever since police in riot gear drove protesters out of public parks all over the world at the end of the Occupy Wall Street protests. As we see new movements come on the scene, like Black Lives Matter, we must continue to ask: What can we learn from the past to avoid the same mistakes that ultimately prevented previous movements from achieving their revolutionary potential…..