[9/22 Class] Shut It Down: Black Lives Matter and the Ethics of Disruptive Protest (Or, What We Can Learn from Mizzou and Colin Kaepernick)

9/22 Shut It Down: Black Lives Matter and the Ethics of Disruptive Protest (Or, What We Can Learn from Mizzou and Colin Kaepernick)

This week’s session focuses on what has become a hallmark strategy for the black lives matter movement: disruptive protest. Whether it be in the form of protestors shutting down highways; activists staging “Die Ins” on the steps of capital buildings; or community organizers interrupting the stump-speeches of presidential candidates—disruption continues to be a viable political strategy for BLM. As such, this week we will study some of the fundamentals of nonviolent civil disobedience and explore the central role that disruptive protest plays in contemporary black social justice movements. Our conversation will be anchored to two case studies: The University of Missouri-Missou’s Concerned Student 1950 movement (which resulted in the resignation of the University of Missouri’s President) and the recent protest of the national anthem by NFL player Colin Kaepaernick Particular attention will be paid to the vital role that two constituencies have historically played in the black freedom struggle: college students and athletes. This session will also serve as a practical introduction to the art of direct action civil disobedience. If time permits, we will screen director Spike Lee’s 2016 documentary about the Mizzou movement, “2 Fists Up: We Gon’ Be Alright.”

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Spike Lee’s “2 Fists Up: We Gon’ Be Alright” is available here.

 

National Headlines week of September 22nd:

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Governor of North Carolina declares state of emergency:

 

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