The internationalisation of nonviolent resistance: the case of the BDS campaign

Marwan Darweish, Andrew Rigby

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    This paper seeks to identify some of the factors that can enhance the strength and influence of international civil society solidarity networks that mobilise around issues of concern. To this end, we focus on the Palestinian-inspired Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign and examine the significant differences that exist between it and the global anti-apartheid movement from which the Palestinian initiative derived much of its inspiration and strategic thinking.
    Differences between the contemporary BDS campaign and the anti-apartheid movement of the 1970s and ’80s fall into three main categories: internal factors related to the organisational profile and membership of the anti-apartheid movement; ideational factors that influenced the level of legitimacy that movement enjoyed; and contextual factors particular to the socio-political and economic environment within which the anti-apartheid movement found itself operating.
    We conclude by emphasising the importance of the dynamic relationship between ‘internal’ popular resistance and the global solidarity movement that the anti-apartheid sanctions inspired. If the BDS movement is to exercise comparable leverage, it is imperative that unarmed resistance against the ongoing Israeli occupation remains buoyant both at local and international levels.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)45-71
    Number of pages27
    JournalJournal of Resistance Studies
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

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    • Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) solidarity networks, south Africa, Palestine, anti-apartheid movement

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Social Sciences(all)


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    • Popular Protest in Palestine

      Darweish, M. & Rigby, A., 31 Mar 2021, The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Peace and Conflict Studies. Richmond, O. & Visoka, G. (eds.). UK: Palgrave, 15 p.

      Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionarypeer-review

    • Israeli Peace and Solidarity Organizations

      Darweish, M., 1 Sept 2017, Conflict Transformation and the Palestinians: The Dynamics of Peace and Justice under Occupation. Ozerdem, A., Thiessen, C. & Qassoum, M. (eds.). UK: Routledge, p. 229-248 20 p.

      Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    • Mit Sit-ins: gegen Bulldozer: Der Gewaltlose peotest in Palestina

      Translated title of the contribution: Set-Ins Against the Bulldozer: Nonviolent protest in Palestine : Popular Protest in Palestine: Uncertain FutureDarweish, M., 30 Mar 2017, In: Edition Le Monde Diplomatique. 2017, 21, p. 70-71 and 75

      Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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