Lokashakti Encyclopedia of Nonviolence, Peace, and Social Justice

Leo Tolstoy

Born into aristocracy in tsarist Russia, by the end of his life Leo Tolstoy had become convinced of the necessity for radical social reform. One of history's most famous novelists, Tolstoy later became a fervent advocate of both pacifism and anarchism, citing the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as inspiration.

Lithuania's Independence Movement

Citizens' groups in Lithuania, including notably the Catholic Church, led this impressive campaign of nonviolent resistance and nonviolent coup defense against Soviet occupation. Lithuania became an independent state in 1991.

Madres de la Plaza de Mayo

Through a sustained presence and remarkable persistence lasting decades, the Madres de la Plaza de Mayo sought to find missing children and other relatives who had disappeared during the time of Argentina's military dictatorship in the late 1970s and early 1980s.


An organized form of collective nonviolent action in which participants attempt to influence the opinions of either the government, the general public, or both. The destination is often of significance to the issue being protested. Marches may or may not have an additional element of civil disobedience involved.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Successfully appropriated Gandhian methods and ideals to the American struggle for civil rights, helping disseminate the message of nonviolence far and wide. Educated as a preacher and theologian but cut as a social reformer, the oratory and rhetoric of Martin Luther King, Jr. place him foremost among history's most brilliant statesmen.

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  • Bios   ( 24 )
    Inspirational noteworthy figures in the history of nonviolence, peace, and social justice
  • Groups   ( 24 )
    Groups and organizations that have played significant roles in nonviolent movements
  • Concepts   ( 18 )
    Important concepts related to peace and nonviolence, especially in regards to nonviolent action
  • Movements   ( 26 )
    Movements and historical events where nonviolent action was used entirely or in large part
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