1970 from the zinn reader, seven stories press parts of speech by howard zinn i start from the supposition that the world is topsy-turvy, that things are all wr. Civil disobedience is defined as the refusal to obey government laws, in an effort to bring upon a change in governmental policy or legislation civil disobedience is not an effort to dissolve the american government, because without government our society would result in chaos. Matt damon, a lifelong friend of howard zinn and his family, read excerpts from a speech howard zinn gave in 1970 as part of a debate on civil disobedience this performance was part of the. Zinn defends the use of civil disobedience to protest the war in vietnam and calls on congress to impeach the president and vice president of the united states for the high crime of waging war on the people of southeast asia.
Here, matt damon reads from a speech howard zinn gave in 1970 as part of a debate on civil disobedience matt damon and his family were lifelong friends of the zinns. Over the weekend jason brennan published an article at bleeding heart libertarians called a theory of civil disobedience in three minutes as one might be able to guess from the title, the crux of the article is that philosophical questions surrounding civil disobedience are easy questions to answer. The problem is civil obedience: howard zinn 1971/2007 2007 public reenactment of a speech given by author and activist howard zinn at a peace rally on boston common on may 5, 1971.
Civil disobedience civil disobedience is defined as the refusal to obey certain laws or governmental demands for the purpose of influencing legislation or government policy it is characterized by the employment of nonviolent techniques such as boycotting, picketing, and nonpayment of taxes.
Civil disobedience, as i put it to the audience, was not the problem, despite the warnings of some that it threatened social stability, that it led to anarchy the greatest danger, i argued, was civil obedience, the submission of individual conscience to governmental authority. Our problem is civil obedience our problem is that people all over the world have obeyed the dictates of leadersand millions have been killed because of this obedienceour problem is that people are obedient allover the world in the face of poverty and starvation and stupidity, and war, and cruelty.
Howard zinn (august 24, 1922 - january 27, 2010) was an american historian, playwright, and social activist he was chair of the history and social sciences department at spelman college ,  and a political science professor at boston university.
The words of howard zinn feature prominently in all these events, and the problem is civil obedience---which was published as an essay two years after the 1970 debate---has proven a popular choice. Civil disobedience has shown more since the 20th century until now, but civil obedience is the problem stands in the way because it is more of an upcoming people are obedient all over the world, which causes millions of people to be killed, diseases, and war2 disobeying the government as a peaceful protest would not be such a bad idea, as. Civil disobedience is not our problem our problem is civil obedience our problem is that people all over the world have obeyed the dictates of leadersand millions have been killed because of this obedienceour problem is that people are obedient allover the world in the face of poverty and starvation and stupidity, and war, and cruelty.
The problem is civil obedience: transcript of a speech delivered by howard zinn at a peace rally on boston common on may 5, 1971 six young people who were in jail with me yesterday in. Abridged version of zinn's 1970 speech on civil disobedience at boston university's 2012 production of the people speak here is zinn's description.