Speaker Series Reports

Towards a Living Revolution: George Lakey, Nonviolence Trainer

George spoke about his book Toward a Living Revolution, (1987) re-published by Peace News this year. He offered an analysis of 5 stages in social change movements, and a range of practical tools for creating change. Lakey was a trainer for Mississippi Summer and co-founder of the Movement for a New Society and Training for Change.

 George has stood up for radical nonviolence for decades. He was a trainer for Mississippi Summer, preparing nonviolent activists to go into a state sweltering with racism and oppression to nonviolently resist segregation. He was a co-founder of the Movement for a New Society and Training for Change and as founding director of Training for Change, Lakey trained activists all over the world, including coal miners, homeless people, prisoners, Russian lesbians and gays, Sri Lankan monks, striking steel workers and South African activists. He was an architect of the Campaign to Stop the B-1 Bomber, which mobilized to gain cancellation of the B-1 in 1977 and a founder of Men Against Patriarchy.  Lakey helped build the men’s anti-sexism movement of the mid-1970s. As an activist in the gay liberation movement, he was arrested for civil disobedience at the U.S. Supreme Court in protest when it upheld Georgia’s anti-gay statute. He is the father of three children, including two adopted children of mixed racial heritage, and also played the major parental role in raising his grandchildren.

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