February 17, 2011

Democracy, The Green Movement, and the messiness of change by popular demand


As I mentioned a couple of days ago, the narrative war between demonstrators in Iran and the government is in full effect. The clerical regime desperately wants to portray the various revolutions engulfing the region now as the progeny of the Iranian Revolution of 1979. The Green Movement, rightly, is demonstrating otherwise.

In the following video People Reloaded contributor Norma Monuzzi, Associate Professor of Political Science, Gender & Women’s Studies, and History, and the Director of the International Studies Program at the University of Illinois at Chicago, talks about the nature of democracy movements, how they’re inherently messy affairs, and how effective popular revolutions–like what we just witnessed in Tunisia and Egypt–tend to be a broad base of diverse groups that cohere around the need for democratic change. She argues that their diversity, while a challenge in the sense that there are few individual leaders, gives these movements strength. Enjoy.