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Case #679

Evolving tactics of The Ruckus Society


Training camps sponsored by the Oakland California based Ruckus Society are evolving to better reflect contemporary realities of "The Movement." Although the RS continues to coach people in nonviolent and often provocative direct action as it has always done, new training camps and workshops reflect a new philosophy. This is to broaden activists' conception of the anti-corporate globalization movement, confront the power and privilege within the organization and its training camps, and commit to breaking down inequalities of power within the U.S. movement. A recent (2004) RS training camp held I Florida serves as an illustration for the new and still evolving philosophy.


The Strategy: Adjust an activist organization's philosophy and leadership structure to better reflect the realities and changes of "The Movement" of today. What Worked: Established white, middle class, urban-based leadership recognized the need to let go of its own roles and positions within the activist organization. Different cultural, sexual identity, and place based (countries other than the US) groups were given true recognition, space and power to work. A variety of tracks within a sample/single workshop allow participants to gain practical skills for organizing back home. "Back home" is now more diversified in terms of race, class and sexuality. Important Points: The road to restructuring has not been easy. It continues to be a work in progress. Beginning in the lat 90s, Ruckus made a commitment to move towards anti-racist, multi-issue camp environments, incorporating an analysis of group power dynamics. Ruckus also began to prioritize the leadership of those most affected by globalization, bridge gaps between local and global struggles, and foster an awareness of the organization's role in the larger global movement. Additionally, the organization has expanded its agenda to include more localized struggles.
Location: USA, global
Action: Legal, Political, Direct, Boycott/Strike, Economic/Business, Demonstration/Protest
Setting: Developed World, Urban
Extent of Action: International
Issues: Human Rights, Peace/Conflict Resolution
Year(s): 2000
Outcome in progress
Source: WireTap, February 9, 2004


The Ruckus Society, www.ruckus.org
Prepared By: sl, 11/05
Rating: 1
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