Educational centers and the formation of the civil disobedience
Speaker: Edgar Vardanyan
From time to time, some portions of the public are challenging the authoritarian systems in different parts of the world. The new era of history is rich with the non-violent for democratic changes and the formal and informal education is a major factor influencing on this trend.
The international experience indicates that most of the foundations of the non-violent are being based on the locations of the education centers and those centers are transforming the ordinary citizens into activists who are struggling for their rights.
The discussion is going to present instances of civil disobedience of the newest era of history and the role the formal and informal education centers have played in the process of the creation of those campaigns, particularly in the Eastern Europe. The seminar is going to play a role
The speaker will also analyze the Armenian reality and its informal and formal education institutions.
Educational centers and their influence on the formation of civil disobedience
The fourth open discussion in the scope of the Education Hub has taken place on October 10 at the Institute of the Public Policy. The speaker has made a presentation talking about the gap od the research in the field of civil disobedience, the civil disobedience (CD) at the Eastern Europe during the 70-80ss and has discussed the similarities and the differences between Armenian civil disobedience and the CD of Eastern Europe.
Edgar has started the presentation with the gaps of the research in Armenia regarding the CD at Armenia at 80s. He has stated that there is a lack of research and there are impeding factors such as the language. Armenian along with other languages do not distinguish policy and politics and other relevant terms. He has continued his talk and has focused on the CD at Poland. There have been 3 major cities where flying universities, wandering schools, where the professors not only have distributed flyers but made classes and raised awareness about the human right, CD, etc. In Poland, another strong educational centre has been the Catholic Church which has been given authority and self-governance, hence has had the capacity to mobilize and educate the masses of people about the movement. Parallels have been drawn with other nations such as Czechoslovakia, Romania, Serbia, etc. These nations have been followed rather than leaders for organizing CD and the reasons behind them have been the economy (Romania), different relation with USSR and simply the national mentality of obeying(Czech).
Later, during the Q&A session, the audience has raised questions that has driven the discussion on the point of comparison between Armenian CD and the CD in Eastern Europe. Artsakh problem has been distinguished as a differentiating factor for Armenia. The audience has been convinced that the Artsakh has made Armenia similar to Poland in the sense that Armenia wanted to take back Artsakh and as doing it formally has seemed impossible, it has been more rational option to opt for CD. Another push factor the audience has brought to the attention has been the elite. It is the general perspective that if elite is uncomfortable with USSR, the CD would be more organized and eventually more successive. In this sense, Armenia’s elite has been different from other nations’ ruling elite because in comparison to them our elite has not only been composed of social scientists but the physicists and mathematicians, as well who interestingly has had major role in the CD in Armenia