Humorous Political Stunts

By Majken Jul Sørensen

A group of anti-conscription activists break into a prison, demanding to be jailed together with their friend already locked up because of his beliefs. Clowns from the rebel clown army mimic police sent to control political protests. Visiting Santas hand out presents taken from shop shelves without the approval of the shopping centre management. These are examples of humorous political stunts – public actions, hoaxes and happenings that confront systems of power. This book contains many amusing stories of such stunts, showing the boldness and creativity of the activists. Interviews and documents are used to show how humour can facilitate outreach, mobilisation and a culture of resistance. Humorous Political Stunts combines insights from the fields of nonviolence and humour studies and makes theoretical contributions to each area.

Written about “Humorous Political Stunts: Nonviolent Public Challenges to Power”

“Sørensen’s excellent dissertation is well written, researched and theorized, and opens up new ground in the field of culture and social change. Her experience as an activist works to her advantage as she knows what questions to ask that are relevant not only to the academy but to the project of social change.”     – Stephen Duncombe, Associate Professor of Media and Culture at New York University and co-director of the Center for Artistic Activism

“Her stories are worth telling for their entertainment value alone, and also as salutary evidence that the committed life of a social activist can also be great fun. For that we thank her.”     – Metta Spencer, Emeritus Professor of Sociology at University of Toronto

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