This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Gandhi And His Use Of Civil Disobedience

1107 words - 5 pages

The unjust ruling of the British toward the Indians in South Africa inspired Gandhi to form the idea of satyagraha, meaning devotion to truth, from the teachings of Tolstoy and Thoreau. The father of his country, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, known as the Mahatma or the ‘great soul’, preached through the use of satyagraha with non violent acts. After presenting the satyagraha he attracted millions of followers which led to Mahatma becoming the leader of the Indian Nationalist movement (BBC). Mahatma Gandhi observed in South Africa that the mainly discriminated group were the Indians of the Sub continent. This was done through restricting their civil rights and degrading them in public. This ...view middle of the document...

“The formation of the Natal Indian Congress on 22 August 1894 marked the birth of the first permanent political organisation to strive to maintain and protect the rights of Indians in South Africa” (sahistory). Gandhi played a major role in this Congress as he was an experienced writer and detailed planner. “In 1907, the Boer legislature passed a law requiring that all Indians register with the police and be fingerprinted. Gandhi…refused to obey this law..the first of many times he [was] imprisoned for disobeying what he believed to be an unjust law (CRF).” This was an escalation of Gandhi’s first encounter of civil disobedience with the law. Here he was dealing with the enforcers of the legislation, which led to greater consequences. He opposed this law because it hindered his people's’ basic right to privacy. This has a great effect on the generation of today because it shows that Gandhi never gave up on something that was unjust and had to be changed. Gandhi,while in jail...read Thoreau’s essay on “Civil Disobedience”. He adopted the non-violent activism from Thoreau and coined the Sanskrit word satyagraha as his method for peaceful protest. “Finally, the Boer government agreed to a compromise that ended the most objectionable parts of the registration law (CRF).” His peaceful protest was very effective because the government made changes to the previous oppressive law in favor of his people. Others in Gandhi’s position would have believed that in order to find a solution to their problems, they must use violence, but Gandhi did not think like others because he willingly faced any consequences that approached him without violence.
The most memorable march in Gandhi’s life was the Salt March. “The Salt Tax essentially made it illegal to sell or produce salt, allowing a complete British monopoly (Seymour).” “Gandhi's defiance of British colonial laws over the empire's salt monopoly...sparked a wave...contributing to expelling the British empire” (Seymour). The salt tax affected majority of indians in a critical way because they were unable able to afford it. In effect, this was a restriction on the freedom of fair business for someone of indian background. This tax allowed the British to be the only allowed to sell salt. “Gandhi and 78 male satyagrahis (activists of truth and resolution)...

Find Another Essay On Gandhi and his use of Civil Disobedience

Importance of Civil Disobedience Essay

1939 words - 8 pages imperative. To do so another example has to be taken into account first: a child wants to eat a cookie but his father prohibits this until lunch is finished. Since the child is particularly intelligent, it views this paternal measure as an unjust act of paternalism and decides to eat the cookie anyway, thereby violating the given imperative of his father. Very few, if anyone, would consider this as an act of Civil Disobedience. Therefore the

Ethics of Civil Disobedience Essay

1782 words - 7 pages Ethics of Civil Disobedience Ban animal cruelty! Give aid to the poor! Save the rainforests! Obey the law! As a human race we must strive to fulfill these commands, for they are our moral duties and obligations. Our obligation to morality sometimes leads to a dilemma. What happens when a law contradicts the morally right thing to do? Would it be moral to act illegally by breaking the law? No matter how drastic the measure, we are still

Gandhi and his work

1192 words - 5 pages pondered ways to better the lives of others. He put himself and his needs last before those of others. Gandhi knew that to better the lives of Indians living in India he had to work towards Independence. One major event that paved the way to achieving this was the civil disobedience of the Salt Laws. The laws "made it punishable to possess salt not purchased from the government salt monopoly"( Pg. 23).Gandhi felt that "nothing but organized non

Evaluation of Dworkin's and Habermas's Approach to Civil Disobedience

1608 words - 6 pages policy. Persuasive forms of policy based civil disobedience may be justified in some circumstances, but as with justice based action, all other political options should be exhausted first and the conditions must be favourable for the actions success. Turning now to Habermas, his views are slightly more liberal than that of Dworkin as we will see in the following outline. Habermas looks upon civil disobedience as an essential element of a

In defence of civil disobedience

1086 words - 5 pages with civil disobedience in a peaceful way, and regardless of the severe consequences that might come in hand. Gandhi successfully implemented his ideas throughout India, and ultimately expelled British rule. Overall, the act of disobedience can make governments more accountable by criticizing its legitimacy. Additionally, this form of protest is the only alternative for peaceful dialogue when the state uses the force. In case of excessive

Thoreau's Civil Disobedience and Walden

1522 words - 6 pages Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) was an American philosopher, author, poet, abolitionist, and naturalist. He was famous for his essay, “Civil Disobedience”, and his book, Walden. He believed in individual conscience and nonviolent acts of political resistance to protest unfair laws. Moreover, he valued the importance of observing nature, being individual, and living in a simple life by his own values. His writings later influenced the thoughts of

Civil Disobedience and the Bible

1015 words - 4 pages Civil disobedience is a nonviolent opposition to a law through refusal to comply with it, on grounds of conscience. I understand why somebody might want to oppose the law. Somebody might have their own beliefs on what is right and wrong and they wouldn’t know when they're disobeying. But when you do know what you're doing, if you don’t obey a certain law set forth for you to follow, there most likely will be some kind of consequence for not

The Impractical Philosophies of Self-reliance and Civil Disobedience

1094 words - 4 pages The Impractical Philosophies of Self-reliance and Civil Disobedience   The philosophies of Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson would work well in a society comprised only of highly intellectual, healthy individuals who were willing put forth the effort needed to thoroughly examine themselves and formulate their own opinions about every issue pertaining to them. Emerson said that all members of society should think for

Early Life of M. Gandhi and his Background

2613 words - 10 pages the violent clash in the town of Chauri Chaura. In 1922, fearing that the movement was about to take a turn towards violence; Gandhi called of the campaign of mass civil disobedience. Gandhi was then arrested and sentenced to six years for sedition, but was released early after an operation on appendicitis.In 1930, Gandhi proclaimed a new campaign of civil disobedience, calling on the Indian population to refuse to pay taxes, particularly the

Comparing Thoreau's Civil Disobedience and Orwell's 1984

896 words - 4 pages Civil Disobedience and 1984 In Orwell’s 1984, the government is all controlling, all manipulative, and all knowing. They maintain every aspect of their member’s lives and monitor them constantly. Conversely, in the context of Civil Disobedience, the government is a form of direct democracy. People have their right to vote and the right to openly express their opinions. The main character of 1984 lives in constant fear of his government while

Nelson Mandela: The Art of Civil Disobedience

1150 words - 5 pages the front of the bus because she believed that all people are the same and deserved equal rights. Although civil disobedience uses tactics of nonviolence, it is more than a little passive resistance because it is used to take action by illegal street demonstrations or by peaceful occupations (Starr). Mandela’s involvement in civil disobedience was due to his strongly hatred of racism and racial prejudice in South Africa. Mr. Mandela did achieve

Similar Essays

An Informative Essay On The Life And Accomplishments Of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. Discusses Also Civil Disobedience

703 words - 3 pages declared he would go to jail or even die before obeying an anti-Asian law. Thousands of Indians joined him in this civil disobedience campaign. He was imprisoned twice. Yet in World War I he again organized an ambulance corps for the British before returning home to India in 1914.Gandhi's writings and devout life won him a mass of Indian followers. They followed him almost blindly in his campaign for swaraj, or 'home rule.' He worked to reconcile all

Promoting The Use Of Civil Disobedience

699 words - 3 pages breaking the law in question in a non-violent manner on the sole bases of ones conscience. In the case of Thoreau, it was not paying taxes, for Ghandi it was hunger strikes, and for Martin Luther King it was the organization of site-ins and public demonstrations. Some agree with the ideas of Henry Thoreau in his literary work “Civil Disobedience,” in this work he discusses the need to prioritize one’s conscience over that of the law. It is

Majority And Government From Thoreau's Views Issues Presented In His Essay Civil Disobedience

1243 words - 5 pages . Thoreau uses the example of the Mexican war to show that the standing government is used by a few individuals to carry out acts that are not always supported by the people. Thoreau says that the actual majority, the people, are instruments of the few individuals who are permitted to govern because they are stronger and the people will not act against those individuals, but they will live around the issues. In Civil Disobedience, Thoreau makes the point

Comparison Of Civil Disobedience Essay

3693 words - 15 pages David Thoreau presented his doctrine that no man should cooperate with laws that are unjust, but, he must be willing to accept the punishment society sets for breaking those laws, and hundreds of years later, people are still inspired by his words. Mohandas K. Gandhi lead an entire country to its freedom, using only his morals and faith to guide him, as well as those who followed him, proving that one man can make a difference. Civil disobedience is the single tool that any person can use to fight for what they want, and they will be heard. After centuries of questioning it, it appears that the pen truly is mightier than the sword.