Rebellion, uprising, or insurrection is a refusal of obedience or order.[1] It refers to the open resistance against the orders of an established authority. The term comes from the Latin verb rebellō, "I renew war" (from re- ("again") + bellō ("I wage war/I revolt"). The rebel is the individual that partakes in rebellion or rebellious activities, particularly when armed. Thus, the term rebellion also refers to the ensemble of rebels in a state of revolt.

A rebellion originates from a sentiment of indignation and disapproval of a situation and then manifests itself by the refusal to submit or to obey the authority responsible for this situation. Rebellion can be individual or collective, peaceful (civil disobedience, civil resistance, and nonviolent resistance) or violent (terrorism, sabotage and guerrilla warfare.)

In political terms, rebellion and revolt are often distinguished by their different aims. If rebellion generally seeks to evade and/or gain concessions from an oppressive power, a revolt seeks to overthrow and destroy that power, as well as its accompanying laws. The goal of rebellion is resistance while a revolt seeks a revolution. As power shifts relative to the external adversary, or power shifts within a mixed coalition, or positions harden or soften on either side, an insurrection may seesaw between the two forms.


Macro approach

The following theories broadly build on the Marxist interpretation of rebellion. They explore the causes of rebellion from a wide lens perspective. Rebellion is studied, in Theda Skocpol's words, by analyzing "objective relationships and conflicts among variously situated groups and nations, rather than the interests, outlooks, or ideologies of particular actors in revolutions".[2]

Marxist insight

Karl Marx's analysis of revolutions sees such expression of political violence not as anomic, episodic outbursts of discontents but rather the symptomatic expression of a particular set of objective but fundamentally contradicting class-based relations of power. Indeed, the central tenet of Marxist philosophy, as expressed in Capital, is the analysis of society's mode of production (technology and labor) concomitant with the ownership of productive institutions and the division of profit. Marx writes about "the hidden structure of society" that must be elucidated through an examination of "the direct relationship of the owners of the conditions of production to the direct producers". The mismatch, between one mode of production, between the social forces and the social ownership of the production, is at the origin of the revolution.[3] The inner imbalance within these modes of production is derived from the conflicting modes of organization, such as capitalism within feudalism, or more appropriately socialism within capitalism. The dynamics engineered by these class frictions help class consciousness root itself in the collective imaginary. For example, the development of the bourgeoisie class went from oppressed merchant class to urban independence, eventually gaining enough power to represent the state as a whole. Social movements, thus, are determined by an exogenous set of circumstances. The proletariat must also, according to Marx, go through the same process of self-determination which can only be achieved by friction against the bourgeoisie. In Marx's theory revolutions are the "locomotives of history", it is because rebellion has for ultimate goal to overthrow the ruling class and its antiquated mode of production. Later, rebellion attempts to replace it with a new system of political economy, one that is better suited to the new ruling class, thus enabling societal progress. The cycle of rebellion, thus, replaces one mode of production by another through the constant class friction.[4]

Ted Gurr: Roots of political violence

In his book Why Men Rebel, Ted Gurr looks at the roots of political violence itself applied to a rebellion framework. He defines political violence as: "all collective attacks within a political community against the political regime, its actors [...] or its policies. The concept represents a set of events, a common property of which is the actual or threatened use of violence".[5] Gurr sees in violence a voice of anger that manifests itself against the established order. More precisely, individuals become angry when they feel what Gurr labels as relative deprivation, meaning the feeling of getting less than one is entitled to. He labels it formally as the "perceived discrepancy between value expectations and value capabilities".[6] Gurr differentiates between three types of relative deprivation:

  1. Decremental deprivation: one's capacities' decrease when expectations remain high. One example of this is the proliferation and thus depreciation of the value of higher education.[7]
  2. Aspirational Deprivation: one's capacities stay the same when expectations rise. An example would be a first generation college student lacking the contacts and network to obtain a higher paying job while watching her better-prepared colleagues bypass her.[8]
  3. Progressive deprivation: expectation and capabilities increase but the former cannot keep up. A good example would be an automotive worker being increasingly marginalized by the automatisation of the assembly line.[9]

Anger is thus comparative. One of his key insight is that "The potential for collective violence varies strongly with the intensity and scope of relative deprivation among members of a collectivity".[10] This means that different individuals within society will have different propensities to rebel based on their particular internalization of their situation. As such, Gurr differentiates between three types of political violence:[11]

  1. Turmoil when only the mass population encounters relative deprivation;
  2. Conspiracy when the population but especially the elite encounters relative deprivation;
  3. Internal War, which includes revolution. In this case, the degree of organization is much higher than turmoil, and the revolution is intrinsically spread to all sections of society, unlike the conspiracy.

Charles Tilly: Centrality of collective action

In From Mobilization to Revolution, Charles Tilly argues that political violence is a normal and endogenous reaction to competition for power between different groups within society. "Collective violence", Tilly writes, "is the product of just normal processes of competition among groups in order to obtain the power and implicitly to fulfill their desires”.[12] He proposes two models to analyze political violence:

  1. The polity model takes into account government and groups jockeying for control over power. Thus, both the organizations holding power and the ones challenging them are included.[13] Tilly labels those two groups "members" and "challengers".
  2. The mobilization model aims to describe the behavior of one single party to the political struggle for power. Tilly further divides the model in two sub-categories, one that deals with the internal dynamics of the group, and the other that is concerned with the "external relations" of the entity with other organizations and/or the government. According to Tilly, the cohesiveness of a group mainly relies on the strength of common interests and the degree of organization. Thus, to answer Gurr, anger alone does not automatically create political violence. Political action is contingent on the capacity to organize and unite. It is far from irrational and spontaneous.

Revolutions are included in this theory, although they remain for Tilly particularly extreme since the challenger(s) aim for nothing less than full control over power.[14] The "revolutionary moment occurs when the population needs to choose to obey either the government or an alternative body who is engaged with the government in a zero-sum game. This is what Tilly calls "multiple sovereignty".[15] The success of a revolutionary movement hinges on "the formation of coalitions between members of the polity and the contenders advancing exclusive alternative claims to control over Government.".[15]

Chalmers Johnson and societal values

For Chalmers Johnson, rebellions are not so much the product of political violence or collective action but in "the analysis of viable, functioning societies".[16] In a quasi-biological manner, Johnson sees revolutions as symptoms of pathologies within the societal fabric. A healthy society, meaning a "value-coordinated social system"[17] does not experience political violence. Johnson's equilibrium is at the intersection between the need for society adapt to changes but at the same time firmly grounded in selective fundamental values. The legitimacy of a political order, he posits, relies exclusively on its compliance with these societal values and in its capacity to integrate and adapt to any change. Rigidity is, in other words, inadmissible. Johnson writes "to make a revolution is to accept violence for the purpose of causing the system to change; more exactly, it is the purposive implementation of a strategy of violence in order to effect a change in social structure".[18] The aim of a revolution is to re-align a political order on new societal values introduced by an externality that the system itself has not been able to process. Rebellions automatically must face a certain amount of coercion because by becoming "de-synchronized", the now illegitimate political order will have to use coercion to maintain its position. A simplified example would be the French Revolution when the Parisian Bourgeoisie did not recognize the core values and outlook of the King as synchronized with its own orientations. More than the King itself, what really sparked the violence was the uncompromising intransigence of the ruling class. Johnson emphasizes "the necessity of investigating a system's value structure and its problems in order to conceptualize the revolutionary situation in any meaningful way".[19]

Theda Skocpol and the Autonomy of the State

Skocpol introduces the concept of the social revolution, to be contrasted with a political revolution. While the later aims to change the polity, the former is "rapid, basic transformations of a society's state and class structures; and they are accompanied and in part carried through by class-based revolts from below".[20] Social revolutions are grassroots movement by nature because they do more than change the modalities of power, they aim to transform the fundamental social structure of society. As a corollary, this means that some "revolutions" may cosmetically change the organization of the monopoly over power without engineering any true change in the social fabric of society. Her analysis is limited to studying the French, Russian, and Chinese revolutions. Skocpol identifies three stages of the revolution in these cases (which she believes can be extrapolated and generalized), each accordingly accompanied by specific structural factors which in turn influence the social results of the political action.

  1. The Collapse of the Old-Regime State: this is an automatic consequence of certain structural conditions. She highlights the importance of international military and economic competition as well as the pressure of the misfunctioning of domestic affairs. More precisely, she sees the breakdown of the governing structures of society influenced by two theoretical actors, the "landed upper class" and the "imperial state".[21] Both could be considered as "partners in exploitation" but in reality competed for resources: the state (monarchs) seek to build up military and economic power to ascertain their geopolitical influence. The upper class works in a logic of profit maximization, meaning preventing as much as possible the state to extract resources. All three revolutions occurred, Skocpol argues, because states failed to be able to "mobilize extraordinary resources from the society and implement in the process reforms requiring structural transformations".[22] The apparently contradicting policies were mandated by a unique set of geopolitical competition and modernization. "Revolutionary political crises occurred because of the unsuccessful attempts of the Bourbon, Romanov, and Manchu regimes to cope with foreign pressures."[22] Skocpol further concludes "the upshot was the disintegration of centralized administrative and military machineries that had theretofore provided the sole unified bulwark of social and political order".[23]
  2. Peasant Uprisings: more than simply a challenge by the landed upper class in a difficult context, the state needs to be challenged by mass peasant uprisings in order to fall. These uprisings must be aimed not at the political structures per se but at the upper class itself, so that the political revolution becomes a social one as well. Skocpol quotes Barrington Moore who famously wrote: "peasants [...] provided the dynamite to bring down the old building".[24] Peasant uprisings are more effective depending on two given structural socioeconomic conditions: the level of autonomy (from both an economic and political point of view) peasant communities enjoy, and the degree of direct control the upper class on local politics. In other words, peasants must be able to have some degree of agency in order to be able to rebel. If the coercive structures of the state and/or the landowners keep a very close check on peasant activity, then there is no space to forment dissent.
  3. Societal Transformation: this is the third and decisive step after the state organization has been seriously weakened and peasant revolts become widespread against landlords. The paradox of the three revolutions Skocpol studies is that stronger centralized and bureaucratic states emerge after the revolts.[25] The exact parameters depend, again, on structural factors as opposed to voluntarist factors: in Russia, the new state found most support in the industrial base, rooting itself in cities. In China, most of the support for the revolt had been in the countryside, thus the new polity was grounded in rural areas. In France, the peasantry was not organized enough, and the urban centers not potent enough so that the new state was not firmly grounded in anything, partially explaining its artificiality.

Here is a summary of the causes and consequences of social revolutions in these three countries, according to Skocpol:[26]

Conditions for Political Crises (A)
Power Structure State of Agrarian Economy International Pressures
France Landed-commercial upper class has moderate influence on the absolutist monarchy via bureaucracy Moderate growth Moderate, pressure from England
Russia Landed nobility has no influence in absolutist state Extensive growth, geographically unbalanced Extreme, string of defeats culminating with WW1
China Landed-commercial upper class has moderate influence on absolutist state via bureaucracy Slow growth Strong, imperialist intrusions
Conditions for Peasant Insurrections (B)
Organization of Agrarian Communities Autonomy of Agrarian Communities
France Peasants own 30-40% of the land own and must pay tribute to the feudal landlord Relatively autonomous, distant control from royal officials
Russia Peasants own 60% of the land, pay rent to landowners that are part of the community Sovereign, supervised by the bureaucracy
China Peasants own 50% of the land and pay rent to the landowners, work exclusively on small plots, no real peasant community Landlords dominate local politics under the supervision of Imperial officials
Societal Transformations (A + B)
France Breakdown of absolutist state, important peasant revolts against feudal system
Russia Failure of top-down bureaucratic reforms, eventual dissolution of the state and widespread peasant revolts against all privately owned land
China Breakdown of absolutist state, disorganized peasant upheavals but no autonomous revolts against landowners

Microfoundational evidence on causes

The following theories are all based on Mancur Olson's work in The Logic of Collective Action, a 1965 book that conceptualizes the inherent problem with an activity that has concentrated costs and diffuse benefits. In this case, the benefits of rebellion are seen as a public good, meaning one that is non-excludable and non-rivalrous.[27] Indeed, the political benefits are generally shared by all in society if a rebellion is successful, not just the individuals that have partaken in the rebellion itself. Olson thus challenges the assumption that simple interests in common are all that is necessary for collective action. In fact, he argues the "free rider" possibility, a term that means to reap the benefits without paying the price, will deter rational individuals from collective action. That is, unless there is a clear benefit, a rebellion will not happen en masse. Thus, Olson shows that "selective incentives", only made accessible to individuals participating in the collective effort, can solve the free rider problem.[28]

The Rational Peasant

Samuel L. Popkin builds on Olson's argument in The Rational Peasant: The Political Economy of Rural Society in Vietnam. His theory is based on the figure of a hyper rational peasant that bases his decision to join (or not) a rebellion uniquely on a cost-benefit analysis. This formalist view of the collective action problem stresses the importance of individual economic rationality and self-interest: a peasant, according to Popkin, will disregard the ideological dimension of a social movement and focus instead on whether or not it will bring any practical benefit to him. According to Popkin, peasant society is based on a precarious structure of economic instability. Social norms, he writes, are "malleable, renegotiated, and shifting in accord with considerations of power and strategic interaction among individuals"[29] Indeed, the constant insecurity and inherent risk to the peasant condition, due to the peculiar nature of the patron-client relationship that binds the peasant to his landowner, forces the peasant to look inwards when he has a choice to make. Popkin argues that peasants rely on their "private, family investment for their long run security and that they will be interested in short term gain vis-à-vis the village. They will attempt to improve their long-run security by moving to a position with higher income and less variance".[30] Popkin stresses this "investor logic" that one may not expect in agrarian societies, usually seen as pre-capitalist communities where traditional social and power structures prevent the accumulation of capital. Yet, the selfish determinants of collective action are, according to Popkin, a direct product of the inherent instability of peasant life. The goal of a laborer, for example, will be to move to a tenant position, then smallholder, then landlord; where there is less variance and more income. Voluntarism is thus non-existent in such communities.

Popkin singles out four variables that impact individual participation:

  1. Contribution to the expenditure of resources: collective action has a cost in terms of contribution, and especially if it fails (an important consideration with regards to rebellion)
  2. Rewards : the direct (more income) and indirect (less oppressive central state) rewards for collective action
  3. Marginal impact of the peasant's contribution to the success of collective action
  4. Leadership "viability and trust" : to what extent the resources pooled will be effectively used.

Without any moral commitment to the community, this situation will engineer free riders. Popkin argues that selective incentives are necessary to overcome this problem.[31]

Political Scientist Christopher Blattman and World Bank economist Laura Alston identify rebellious activity as an "occupational choice".[32] They draw a parallel between criminal activity and rebellion, arguing that the risks and potential payoffs an individual must calculate when making the decision to join such a movement remains similar between the two activities. In both cases, only a selected few reap important benefits, while most of the members of the group do not receive similar payoffs.[33] The choice to rebel is inherently linked with its opportunity cost, namely what an individual is ready to give up in order to rebel. Thus, the available options beside rebellious or criminal activity matter just as much as the rebellion itself when the individual makes the decision. Blattman and Alston, however, recognize that "a poor person's best strategy" might be both rebellion illicit and legitimate activities at the same time.[33] Individuals, they argue, can often have a varied "portofolio" of activities, suggesting that they all operate on a rational, profit maximizing logic. The authors conclude that the best way to fight rebellion is to increase its opportunity cost, both by more enforcement but also by minimizing the potential material gains of a rebellion.[33]

The decision to join a rebellion can be based on the prestige and social status associated with membership in the rebellious group. More than material incentives for the individual, rebellions offer their members club goods, public goods that are reserved only for the members inside that group. Economist Eli Berman and Political Scientist David D. Laitin's study of radical religious groups show that the appeal of club goods can help explain individual membership. Berman and Laitin discuss suicide operations, meaning acts that have the highest cost for an individual. They find that in such a framework, the real danger to an organization is not volunteering but preventing defection. Furthermore, the decision to enroll in such high stakes organization can be rationalized.[34] Berman and Laitin show that religious organizations supplant the state when it fails to provide an acceptable quality of public goods such a public safety, basic infrastructure, access to utilities, or schooling.[35] Suicide operations "can be explained as a costly signal of “commitment” to the community".[36] They further note "Groups less adept at extracting signals of commitment (sacrifices) may not be able to consistently enforce incentive compatibility."[37] Thus, rebellious groups can organize themselves to ask of members proof of commitment to the cause. Club goods serve not so much to coax individuals into joining but to prevent defection.

World Bank economists Paul Collier and Anke Hoeffler compare two dimensions of incentives:

  1. Greed rebellion: "motivated by predation of the rents from primary commodity exports, subject to an economic calculus of costs and a military survival constraint".[38]
  2. Grievance rebellion: "motivated by hatreds which might be intrinsic to ethnic and religious differences, or reflected objective resentments such as domination by an ethnic majority, political repression, or economic inequality".[38] The two main sources of grievance are political exclusion and inequality.

Vollier and Hoeffler find that the model based on grievance variables systematically fails to predict past conflicts, while the model based on greed performs well. The authors posit that the high cost of risk to society is not taken into account seriously by the grievance model: individuals are fundamentally risk-adverse. However, they allow that conflicts create grievances, which in turn can become risk factors. Contrary to established beliefs, they also find that a multiplicity of ethnic communities make society safer, since individuals will be automatically more cautious, at the opposite of the grievance model predictions.[38] Finally, the authors also note that the grievances expressed by members of the diaspora of a community in turmoil has an important on the continuation of violence.[39] Both greed and grievance thus need to be included in the reflection.

The Moral Economy of the Peasant

Spearheaded by political scientist and anthropologist James C. Scott in his book The Moral Economy of the Peasant, the moral economy school considers moral variables such as social norms, moral values, interpretation of justice, and conception of duty to the community as the prime influencers of the decision to rebel. This perspective still adheres to Olson's framework, but it considers different variables to enter the cost/benefit analysis: the individual is still believed to be rational, albeit not on material but moral grounds.[40]

Before being fully conceptualized by Scott, British historian E.P. Thompson was the first to use the term "moral economy" in Moral Economy of the English Crowd in the Eighteenth Century.[41] In this work, he discussed English bread riots, regular, localized form of rebellion by English peasants all through the 18th century. Such events, Thompson argues, have been routinely dismissed as "riotous", with the connotation of being disorganized, spontaneous, undirected, and undisciplined. In other words, anecdotal. The reality, he suggests, was otherwise: such riots involved a coordinated peasant action, from the pillaging of food convoys to the seizure of grain shops. Here, while a scholar such as Popkin would have argued that the peasants were trying to gain material benefits (crudely: more food), Thompson sees a legitimization factor, meaning "a belief that [the peasants] were defending traditional rights and customs". Thompson goes on to write: "[the riots were] legitimized by the assumptions of an older moral economy, which taught the immorality of any unfair method of forcing up the price of provisions by profiteering upon the necessities of the people". Later, reflecting on this work, Thompson would also write: "My object of analysis was the mentalité, or, as I would prefer, the political culture, the expectations, traditions, and indeed, superstitions of the working population most frequently involved in actions in the market".[42] The opposition between a traditional, paternalist, and the communitarian set of values clashing with the inverse liberal, capitalist, and market-derived ethics is central to explain rebellion.

In The Moral Economy of Peasant: Rebellion and Subsistence in Southeast Asia, James C. Scott looks at the impact of exogenous economic and political shocks on peasant communities in Southeast Asia. Scott finds that peasants are mostly in the business of surviving and producing enough to subsist.[43] Therefore, any extractive regime needs to respect this careful equilibrium. He labels this phenomenon the "subsistence ethic".[44] A landowner operating in such communities is seen to have the moral duty to prioritize the peasant's subsistence over his constant benefit. According to Scott, the powerful colonial state accompanied by market capitalism did not respect this fundamental hidden law in peasant societies. Rebellious movements occurred as the reaction to an emotional grief, a moral outrage.[45]

Blattman and Ralston recognize the importance of immaterial selective incentives, such as anger, outrage, and injustice ("grievance") in the roots of rebellions. These variables, they argue, are far from being irrational, as they are sometimes presented. They identify three main types of grievance arguments:

  1. Intrinsic incentives holds that "injustice or perceived transgression generates an intrinsic willingness to punish or seek retribution".[46] More than material rewards, individuals are naturally and automatically prompted to fight for justice if they feel they have been wronged. The ultimatum game is an excellent illustration: player one receives $10 and must split it with another player who doesn't get the chance to determine how much he receives, but only if the deal is made or not (if he refuses, everyone loses their money). Rationally, player 2 should take whatever the deal is because it is better in absolute term ($1 more remains $1 more). However, player 2 is most likely unwilling to accept less than 2 or 2 dollars, meaning that they are willing to pay a-$2 for justice to be respected. This game, according to Blattman and Ralston, represents "the expressive pleasure people gain from punishing an injustice".[46]
  2. Loss aversion holds that "people tend to evaluate their satisfaction relative to a reference point, and that they are 'loss adverse".[47] Individuals prefer not losing over the risky strategy of making gains. There is a substantial subjective part to this, however, as some may realize alone and decide that they are comparatively less well off than a neighbor, for example. To "fix" this gap, individuals will in turn be ready to take great risks so as to not enshrine a loss.[47]
  3. Frustration-aggression: this model holds that the immediate emotional reactions to highly stressful environments do not obey to any "direct utility benefit but rather a more impulsive and emotional response to a threat".[47] There are limits to this theory: violent action is to a large extent a product of goals by an individual which are in turn determined by a set of preferences.[48] Yet, this approach shows that contextual elements like economic precarity have a non-negligible impact on the conditions of the decisions to rebel at minimum.


Stathis N. Kalyvas, a political science professor at Yale University, argues that political violence is heavily influenced by hyperlocal socio-economic factors, from the mundane traditional family rivalries to repressed grudges.[49] Rebellion, or any sort of political violence, are not binary conflicts but must be understood as interactions between public and private identities and actions. The "convergence of local motives and supralocal imperatives" make studying and theorizing rebellion a very complex affair, at the intersection between the political and the private, the collective and the individual.[50] Kalyvas argues that we often try to group political conflicts according to two structural paradigms:

  1. The idea that political violence, and more specifically rebellion, is characterized by a complete breakdown of authority and an anarchic state. This is inspired by Thomas Hobbes' views. The approach sees rebellion as being motivated by greed and loot, using violence to break down the power structures of society.[49]
  2. The idea that all political violence is inherently motivated by an abstract group of loyalties and beliefs, "whereby the political enemy becomes a private adversary only by virtue of prior collective and impersonal enmity".[49] Violence is thus not a "man to man" affair as much as a :state to state" struggle, if not an "idea vs idea" conflict.[49]

Kalyvas' key insight is that the central vs periphery dynamic is fundamental in political conflicts. Any individual actor, Kalyvas posits, enters into a calculated alliance with the collective.[51] Rebellions thus cannot be analyzed in molar categories, nor should we assume that individuals are automatically in line with the rest of the actors simply by virtue of ideological, religious, ethnic, or class cleavage. The agency is located both within the collective and in the individual, in the universal and the local.[51] Kalyvas writes: "Alliance entails a transaction between supralocal and local actors, whereby the former supply the later with external muscle, thus allowing them to win decisive local advantage, in exchange the former rely on local conflicts to recruit and motivate supporters and obtain local control, resources, and information- even when their ideological agenda is opposed to localism".[51] Individuals will thus aim to use the rebellion in order to gain some sort of local advantage, while the collective actors will aim to gain power. Violence is a mean as opposed to a goal, according to Kalyvas.

The greater takeaway from this central/local analytical lens is that violence is not an anarchic tactic or a manipulation by an ideology, but a conversation between the two. Rebellions are "concatenations of multiple and often disparate local cleavages, more or less loosely arranged around the master cleavage".[51] Any pre-conceived explanation or theory of a conflict must not be placated on a situation, lest one will construct a reality that adapts itself to his pre-conceived idea. Kalyvas thus argues that political conflict is not always political in the sense that they cannot be reduced to a certain discourse, decisions, or ideologies from the "center" of collective action. Instead, the focus must be on "local cleavages and intracommunity dynamics".[52] Furthermore, rebellion is not "a mere mechanism that opens up the floodgates to random and anarchical private violence".[52] Rather, it is the result of a careful and precarious alliance between local motivations and collective vectors to help the individual cause.


003Rebelión parauna esper
"Rebellion for a hope" by Mexican artist Mauricio García Vega

An armed but limited rebellion is an insurrection,[53] and if the established government does not recognize the rebels as belligerents then they are insurgents and the revolt is an insurgency.[54] In a larger conflict the rebels may be recognized as belligerents without their government being recognized by the established government, in which case the conflict becomes a civil war.[55]

Civil resistance movements have often aimed at, and brought about, the fall of a government or head of state, and in these cases could be considered a form of rebellion. In many of these cases the opposition movement saw itself not only as nonviolent, but also as upholding their country's constitutional system against a government that was unlawful, for example if it had refused to acknowledge its defeat in an election. Thus the term "rebel" does not always capture the element in some of these movements of acting as a defender of legality and constitutionalism.[56]

There are a number of terms that are associated with rebel and rebellion. They range from those with positive connotations to those with pejorative connotations. Examples include:

  • Civil resistance, civil disobedience, and nonviolent resistance which do not include violence or paramilitary force.
  • Mutiny, which is carried out by military or security forces against their commanders
  • Armed resistance movement, which is carried out by freedom fighters, often against an occupying foreign power
  • Revolt, a term that is sometimes used for a more localized rebellions rather than a general uprising
  • Revolution, which is carried out by radicals, usually meant to overthrow the current government
  • Riot, a form of civil disorder involving violent public disturbance
  • Subversion, which are non-overt attempts at sabotaging a government, carried out by spies or other subversives
  • Terrorism, which is carried out by different kinds of political, economic or religious militant individuals or groups

See also


  1. ^ Lalor, John Joseph (1884). Cyclopædia of Political Science, Political Economy, and of the Political ... Rand, McNally. p. 632.
  2. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 291.
  3. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 7.
  4. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 8.
  5. ^ Gurr 1970, p. 3.
  6. ^ Gurr 1970, p. 37.
  7. ^ Gurr 1970, p. 47.
  8. ^ Gurr 1970, p. 52.
  9. ^ Gurr 1970, p. 53.
  10. ^ Gurr 1970, p. 24.
  11. ^ Gurr 1970, p. 11.
  12. ^ Tilly 1978, p. 54.
  13. ^ Tilly 1978, p. ch3.
  14. ^ Tilly 1978, p. ch7.
  15. ^ a b Tilly 1978, p. 213.
  16. ^ Johnson 1966, p. 3.
  17. ^ Johnson 1966, p. 36.
  18. ^ Johnson 1966, p. 57.
  19. ^ Johnson 1966, p. 32.
  20. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 4.
  21. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 49.
  22. ^ a b Skocpol 1979, p. 50.
  23. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 51.
  24. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 112.
  25. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 162.
  26. ^ Skocpol 1979, p. 155.
  27. ^ Olson 1965, p. 9.
  28. ^ Olson 1965, p. 76.
  29. ^ Popkin 1979, p. 22.
  30. ^ Popkin 1979, p. 23.
  31. ^ Popkin 1979, p. 34.
  32. ^ Blattman and Rason 2015, p. 22.
  33. ^ a b c Blattman and Rason 2015, p. 23.
  34. ^ Berman and Laitin 2008, p. 1965.
  35. ^ Berman and Laitin 2008, p. 1944.
  36. ^ Berman and Laitin 2008, p. 1943.
  37. ^ Berman and Laitin 2008, p. 1954.
  38. ^ a b c Collier and Hoeffler 2002, p. 26.
  39. ^ Collier and Hoeffler 2002, p. 27.
  40. ^ Scott 1976, p. 6.
  41. ^ Thompson, E. P. (1971-01-01). "The Moral Economy of the English Crowd in the Eighteenth Century". Past & Present (50): 76–136. JSTOR 650244.
  42. ^ Thompson, E. P. (1993-08-01). Customs in Common: Studies in Traditional Popular Culture. The New Press. ISBN 9781565840744.
  43. ^ Scott 1976, p. 15.
  44. ^ Scott 1976, p. 13.
  45. ^ Scott 1976, p. 193.
  46. ^ a b Blattman and Rason 2015, p. 24.
  47. ^ a b c Blattman and Rason 2015, p. 25.
  48. ^ Blattman and Rason 2015, p. 26.
  49. ^ a b c d Kalyvas 2003, p. 476.
  50. ^ Kalyvas 2003, p. 475.
  51. ^ a b c d Kalyvas 2003, p. 486.
  52. ^ a b Kalyvas 2003, p. 487.
  53. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, 1989. Insurrection: "The action of rising in arms or open resistance against established authority or governmental restraint; with pl., an instance of this, an armed rising, a revolt; an incipient or limited rebellion."
  54. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, 1989. Insurgent "One who rises in revolt against constituted authority; a rebel who is not recognized as a belligerent."
  55. ^ Hall, Kermit L.The Oxford Guide to United States Supreme Court Decisions, Oxford University Press US, 2001. ISBN 0-19-513924-0, ISBN 978-0-19-513924-2 pp. 246,247 "In supporting Lincoln on this issue, the Supreme Court upheld his theory of the Civil War as an insurrection against the United States government that could be suppressed according to the rules of war. In this way the United States was able to fight the war as if it were an international war, without actually having to recognize the de jure existence of the Confederate government."
  56. ^ See the chapters by specialists on the various above-cited cases of civil resistance in Adam Roberts and Timothy Garton Ash (eds.), Civil Resistance and Power Politics: The Experience of Non-violent Action from Gandhi to the Present, Oxford University Press, 2009. See [1].


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  • Collier, Paul; Hoeffler, Anke (2002). Greed and Grievance in Civil War (PDF). The World Bank Policy Research Working Paper. 2355.
Bacon's Rebellion

Bacon's Rebellion was an armed rebellion in 1676 by Virginia settlers led by Nathaniel Bacon against the rule of Governor William Berkeley. The colony's dismissive policy as it related to the political challenges of its western frontier, along with other challenges including leaving Bacon out of his inner circle, refusing to allow Bacon to be a part of his fur trade with Native Americans, and attacks by the Doeg people, helped to motivate a popular uprising against Berkeley, who had failed to address the demands of the colonists regarding their safety.

Thousands of Virginians from all classes and races rose up in arms against Berkeley, attacking Native Americans, chasing Berkeley from Jamestown, Virginia, and ultimately torching the capital. The rebellion was first suppressed by a few armed merchant ships from London whose captains sided with Berkeley and the loyalists. Government forces from England arrived soon after and spent several years defeating pockets of resistance and reforming the colonial government to be once more under direct royal control.It was the first rebellion in the American colonies in which discontented frontiersmen took part (a somewhat similar uprising in Maryland involving John Coode and Josias Fendall took place shortly afterwards). The alliance between European indentured servants and Africans (many enslaved until death or freed), united by their bond-servitude, disturbed the ruling class, who responded by hardening the racial caste of slavery in an attempt to divide the two races from subsequent united uprisings with the passage of the Virginia Slave Codes of 1705. While the farmers did not succeed in their initial goal of driving the Native Americans from Virginia, the rebellion did result in Berkeley being recalled to England.

Boxer Rebellion

The Boxer Rebellion (拳亂), Boxer Uprising, or Yihetuan Movement (義和團運動) was an anti-imperialist, anti-colonial, and anti-Christian uprising that took place in China between 1899 and 1901, toward the end of the Qing dynasty. They were motivated by proto-nationalist sentiments and by opposition to Western colonialism and the Christian missionary activity that was associated with it.

It was initiated by the Militia United in Righteousness (Yihetuan), known in English as the Boxers, for many of their members had been practitioners of Chinese martial arts, also referred to in the west as Chinese Boxing. The uprising took place against a background that included severe drought and disruption caused by the growth of foreign spheres of influence. The original cause of the uprising was the particular jurisdictional status of European legations in Peking, which were not subject to Chinese authorities: robber gangs were formed in the out-buildings of the German legation (mainly among Lutheran missionaries), spreading outrage in the Chinese locals (the Western robbers had the habit of taking refuge in the European legations after having committed their crimes to escape punishment). As a result, opposition to Western colonialism and Christian missionary activity took place. After several months of growing violence in Shandong and the North China plain against the foreign and Christian presence in June 1900, Boxer fighters, convinced they were invulnerable to foreign weapons, converged on Beijing with the slogan Support the Qing government and exterminate the foreigners. Foreigners and Chinese Christians sought refuge in the Legation Quarter.

In response to reports of an armed invasion by allied American, Austro-Hungarian, British, French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Russian forces to lift the siege, the initially hesitant Empress Dowager Cixi supported the Boxers and on June 21 issued an Imperial Decree declaring war on the foreign powers. Diplomats, foreign civilians, and soldiers as well as Chinese Christians in the Legation Quarter were detained for 55 days by the Imperial Army of China and the Boxers.

Chinese officialdom was split between those supporting the Boxers and those favoring conciliation, led by Prince Qing. The supreme commander of the Chinese forces, the Manchu General Ronglu (Junglu), later claimed he acted to protect the besieged foreigners. Many officials refused the imperial order to fight against foreigners in their Mutual Protection of Southeast China, because Qing had lost the First Sino-Japanese War five years before.

The Eight-Nation Alliance, after being initially turned back, brought 20,000 armed troops to China, defeated the Imperial Army, and arrived at Peking on August 14, relieving the siege of the Legations. Uncontrolled plunder of the capital and the surrounding countryside ensued, along with the summary execution of those suspected of being Boxers.

The Boxer Protocol of 7 September 1901 provided for the execution of government officials who had supported the Boxers, provisions for foreign troops to be stationed in Beijing, and 450 million taels of silver—approximately $10 billion at 2018 silver prices and more than the government's annual tax revenue—to be paid as indemnity over the course of the next thirty-nine years to the eight nations involved. The Empress Dowager then sponsored a set of institutional and fiscal changes in a failed attempt to save the dynasty.

Code Geass

Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion (コードギアス 反逆のルルーシュ, Kōdo Giasu: Hangyaku no Rurūshu), often referred to as simply Code Geass, is a Japanese anime series created by Sunrise, directed by Gorō Taniguchi, and written by Ichirō Ōkouchi, with original character designs by manga artist group Clamp. Set in an alternate timeline, the series focuses on how the former prince Lelouch vi Britannia obtains a power known as Geass and decides to use it to obliterate the Holy Britannian Empire, a superpower that has been conquering various countries.

Code Geass first ran in Japan on MBS from October 6, 2006, to July 29, 2007. Its sequel series, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion R2 (コードギアス 反逆のルルーシュR2, Kōdo Giasu Hangyaku no Rurūshu Āru Tsū), ran as a simulcast on JNN stations (like MBS and TBS) from April 6, 2008 to September 28, 2008. The series has also been adapted into various manga and light novels with the former showing various alternate scenarios from the TV series. Bandai Entertainment also licensed most parts from the franchise for English release in December 2007, airing the two TV series on Adult Swim. Most manga and light novels have also been published in North America by Bandai. A compilation film trilogy that recapped the events from both seasons of the anime series, with altered storylines for various characters, was released in 2017 and 2018. A new film, titled Code Geass: Lelouch of the Re;surrection (コードギアス 復活のルルーシュ, Kōdo Giasu: Fukkatsu no Rurūshu), taking place after the Zero Requiem of the recap films' universe, was released in theaters on February 9, 2019.The anime television series has been well received in Japan, selling over a million DVD and Blu-ray Disc volumes. Both seasons have won several awards at the Tokyo International Anime Fair, Animage Anime Grand Prix, and Animation Kobe event. Critics have praised the series for its large audience appeal as well as the cross conflicts shown among the main characters and the moral questions presented.

Communist rebellion in the Philippines

The CPP–NPA–NDF rebellion refers to the ongoing conflict between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the communist coalition of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), the New People's Army (NPA), and the National Democratic Front (NDF).

In 1969, the NPA was formed, and the first violent incident took place in 1971. A year later, President Ferdinand Marcos introduced martial law. Until 2002, the NPA received a considerable amount of aid from outside the Philippines, although later developments forced it to rely on support from local sources. Between 1969 and 2008, more than 43,000 insurgency-related fatalities were recorded.

Easter Rising

The Easter Rising (Irish: Éirí Amach na Cásca), also known as the Easter Rebellion, was an armed insurrection in Ireland during Easter Week, April 1916. The Rising was launched by Irish republicans to end British rule in Ireland and establish an independent Irish Republic while the United Kingdom was heavily engaged in the First World War. It was the most significant uprising in Ireland since the rebellion of 1798, and the first armed action of the Irish revolutionary period.

Organised by a seven-man Military Council of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, the Rising began on Easter Monday, 24 April 1916, and lasted for six days. Members of the Irish Volunteers—led by schoolmaster and Irish language activist Patrick Pearse, joined by the smaller Irish Citizen Army of James Connolly and 200 women of Cumann na mBan—seized key locations in Dublin and proclaimed an Irish Republic. The British Army brought in thousands of reinforcements as well as artillery and a gunboat. There was fierce street fighting on the routes into the city centre, where the rebels put up stiff resistance, slowing the British advance and inflicting heavy casualties. Elsewhere in Dublin, the fighting mainly consisted of sniping and long-range gun battles. The main rebel positions were gradually surrounded and bombarded with artillery. There were isolated actions in other parts of Ireland, with attacks on the Royal Irish Constabulary barracks at Ashbourne, County Meath, County Cork and in County Galway, and the seizure of the town of Enniscorthy, County Wexford. Germany had sent a shipment of arms to the rebels, but the British had intercepted it just before the Rising began. Volunteer leader Eoin MacNeill had then issued a countermand in a bid to halt the Rising, which greatly reduced the number of rebels who mobilised.

With much greater numbers and heavier weapons, the British Army suppressed the Rising. Pearse agreed to an unconditional surrender on Saturday 29 April, although sporadic fighting continued until Sunday, when word reached the other rebel positions. After the surrender the country remained under martial law. About 3,500 people were taken prisoner by the British, many of whom had played no part in the Rising, and 1,800 of them were sent to internment camps or prisons in Britain. Most of the leaders of the Rising were executed following courts-martial. The Rising brought physical force republicanism back to the forefront of Irish politics, which for nearly 50 years had been dominated by constitutional nationalism. It, and the British reaction to it, led to increased popular support for Irish independence. In December 1918, republicans, represented by the reconstituted Sinn Féin party, won 73 seats in a landslide victory in the general election to the British Parliament. They did not take their seats, but instead convened the First Dáil and declared the independence of the Irish Republic. The Soloheadbeg ambush started the War of Independence.

485 people were killed in the Easter Rising. About 54% were civilians, 30% were British military and police, and 16% were Irish rebels. More than 2,600 were wounded. Many of the civilians were killed as a result of the British using artillery and heavy machine guns, or mistaking civilians for rebels. Others were caught in the crossfire in a crowded city. The shelling and the fires it caused left parts of inner city Dublin in ruins.

Escambray rebellion

The Escambray rebellion was a six-year rebellion (1959–1965) in the Escambray Mountains by a group of insurgents who opposed the Cuban government led by Fidel Castro.

The rebelling group of insurgents was a mix of former Batista soldiers, local farmers, and former allied guerrillas who had fought alongside Castro against Batista during the Cuban Revolution. The end result was the elimination of all insurgents by Cuban government forces in 1965. The Cuban government describes rebellion as "War Against the Bandits" (Spanish: Lucha contra Bandidos).

Indian Rebellion of 1857

The Indian Rebellion of 1857 was a major, but ultimately unsuccessful, uprising in India in 1857–58 against the rule of the British East India Company, which functioned as a sovereign power on behalf of the British Crown. The rebellion began on 10 May 1857 in the form of a mutiny of sepoys of the Company's army in the garrison town of Meerut, 40 miles northeast of Delhi (now Old Delhi). It then erupted into other mutinies and civilian rebellions chiefly in the upper Gangetic plain and central India, though incidents of revolt also occurred farther north and east. The rebellion posed a considerable threat to British power in that region, and was contained only with the rebels' defeat in Gwalior on 20 June 1858. On 1 November 1858, the British granted amnesty to all rebels not involved in murder, though they did not declare the hostilities formally to have ended until 8 July 1859. The rebellion is known by many names, including the Sepoy Mutiny, the Indian Mutiny, the Great Rebellion, the Revolt of 1857, the Indian Insurrection, and the First War of Independence.The Indian rebellion was fed by resentments born of diverse perceptions, including invasive British-style social reforms, harsh land taxes, summary treatment of some rich landowners and princes, as well as scepticism about the improvements brought about by British rule. Many Indians did rise against the British, however, very many also fought for the British, and the majority remained seemingly compliant to British rule. Violence, which sometimes betrayed exceptional cruelty, was inflicted on both sides, on British officers, and civilians, including women and children, by the rebels, and on the rebels, and their supporters, including sometimes entire villages, by British reprisals; the cities of Delhi and Lucknow were laid waste in the fighting and the British retaliation.After the outbreak of the mutiny in Meerut, the rebels very quickly reached Delhi, whose 81-year-old Mughal ruler, Bahadur Shah Zafar, they declared the Emperor of Hindustan. Soon, the rebels had also captured large tracts of the North-Western Provinces and Awadh (Oudh). The East India Company's response came rapidly as well. With help from reinforcements, Kanpur was retaken by mid-July 1857, and Delhi by the end of September. However, it then took the remainder of 1857 and the better part of 1858 for the rebellion to be suppressed in Jhansi, Lucknow, and especially the Awadh countryside. Other regions of Company controlled India—Bengal province, the Bombay Presidency, and the Madras Presidency—remained largely calm. In the Punjab, the Sikh princes crucially helped the British by providing both soldiers and support. The large princely states, Hyderabad, Mysore, Travancore, and Kashmir, as well as the smaller ones of Rajputana, did not join the rebellion, serving the British, in the Governor-General Lord Canning's words, as "breakwaters in a storm."In some regions, most notably in Awadh, the rebellion took on the attributes of a patriotic revolt against European presence. However, the rebel leaders proclaimed no articles of faith that presaged a new political system. Even so, the rebellion proved to be an important watershed in Indian- and British Empire history. It led to the dissolution of the East India Company, and forced the British to reorganize the army, the financial system, and the administration in India, through passage of the Government of India Act 1858. India was thereafter administered directly by the British government in the new British Raj. On 1 November 1858, Queen Victoria issued a proclamation to Indians, which while lacking the authority of a constitutional provision, promised rights similar to those of other British subjects. In the following decades, when admission to these rights was not always forthcoming, Indians were to pointedly refer to the Queen's proclamation in growing avowals of a new nationalism.

Irish Rebellion of 1641

The Irish Rebellion of 1641 (Irish: Éirí Amach 1641) began as an attempted coup d'état by Irish Catholic gentry, who tried to seize control of the English administration in Ireland to force concessions for Catholics. The coup failed and the rebellion developed into an ethnic conflict between the Gaelic Irish and old English Catholics on one side, and both ethnically English Protestants and Scottish/Presbyterian planters on the other. This began a conflict known as the Irish Confederate Wars.

The rising was sparked by Catholic fears of an impending invasion of Ireland by anti-Catholic forces of the English Long Parliament and the Scottish Covenanters, who were defying the authority of King Charles I (king of England, Scotland, and Ireland). In turn, the rebels' suspected association with Charles helped start the English Civil War. The English and Scottish Parliaments refused to raise an army to put down the rebellion unless it was under their command rather than the King's.

The Irish rebellion broke out in October 1641 and was followed by several months of violent chaos before the Irish Catholic upper classes and clergy formed the Catholic Confederation in the summer of 1642. The Confederation became a de facto government of most of Ireland, free from the control of the English administration and loosely aligned with the Royalist side in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. The subsequent Irish Confederate Wars continued in Ireland until the 1650s, when Oliver Cromwell's New Model Army decisively defeated the Irish Catholics and Royalists, and re-conquered the country. The 1641 Irish Rebellion is seen as a key event in the mid-17th century collapse of the Stuart monarchy.

Irish Rebellion of 1798

The Irish Rebellion of 1798 (Irish: Éirí Amach 1798) was an uprising against British rule in Ireland from May to September 1798. The United Irishmen, a republican revolutionary group influenced by the ideas of the American and French revolutions, were the main organising force behind the rebellion. It was led by Presbyterians angry at being shut out of power by the Anglican establishment, joined by Catholics, who made up the majority of the population. Many Irish Ulster Protestants mainly Church of Ireland sided with the British, resulting in the conflict taking on the appearance of a sectarian civil war in many areas, with atrocities on both sides. A French army which landed in County Mayo in support of the rebels was overwhelmed by British and loyalist forces. The uprising was suppressed by British Crown forces with a death toll of between 10,000 and 30,000.

Jacobite rising of 1745

The Jacobite rising of 1745, also known as the Forty-five Rebellion or simply the '45 (Scottish Gaelic: Bliadhna Theàrlaich [ˈpliən̪ˠə ˈhjaːrˠl̪ˠɪç], "The Year of Charles"), was an attempt by Charles Edward Stuart to regain the British throne for his father, James Francis Edward Stuart. It took place during the War of the Austrian Succession, when the bulk of the British Army was fighting in mainland Europe, and proved to be the last in a series of revolts that began in 1689, with major outbreaks in 1708, 1715 and 1719.

Charles launched the rebellion on 19 August 1745 at Glenfinnan in the Scottish Highlands, capturing Edinburgh and winning the Battle of Prestonpans in September. At a council in October, the Scots agreed to invade England after Charles assured them of substantial support from English Jacobites and a simultaneous French landing in Southern England. On that basis, the Jacobite army entered England in early November, reaching Derby on 4 December, where they decided to turn back.

Similar discussions had taken place at Carlisle, Preston and Manchester and many felt they had gone too far already. The invasion route had been selected to cross areas considered strongly Jacobite but the promised English support failed to materialise; they were now outnumbered and in danger of having their retreat cut off. The decision was supported by the vast majority but caused an irretrievable split between Charles and his Scots supporters. Despite victory at Falkirk Muir in January 1746, the Battle of Culloden in April ended the Rebellion and significant backing for the Stuart cause. Charles escaped to France, but was unable to win support for another attempt, and died in Rome in 1788.

Jacobite risings

The Jacobite risings, also known as the Jacobite rebellions or the War of the British Succession, were a series of uprisings, rebellions, and wars in Great Britain and Ireland occurring between 1688 and 1746. The uprisings had the aim of returning James II of England and VII of Scotland, the last Catholic British monarch, and later his descendants of the House of Stuart, to the throne of Great Britain after they had been deposed by Parliament during the Glorious Revolution. The series of conflicts takes its name Jacobitism, from Jacobus, the Latin form of James.

Jacobite rising may refer to any of the following:

Jacobite rising of 1689

Williamite War in Ireland, James's attempts to regain the throne in Ireland

Jacobite assassination plot 1696

Planned French invasion of Britain (1708), included Jacobite support.

Jacobite rising of 1715

Jacobite rising of 1719

Planned French invasion of Britain (1744), included Jacobite support.

Jacobite rising of 1745

Planned French invasion of Britain (1759), included Jacobite support.

Kronstadt rebellion

The Kronstadt rebellion or Kronstadt mutiny (Russian: Кронштадтское восстание, tr. Kronshtadtskoye vosstaniye) was a major unsuccessful uprising against the Bolsheviks in March 1921, during the later years of the Russian Civil War. Led by Stepan Petrichenko and consisting of Russian sailors, soldiers, and civilians, the rebellion was one of the reasons for Vladimir Lenin's and the Communist Party's decision to loosen its control of the Russian economy by implementing the New Economic Policy (NEP).The rebellion originated in Kronstadt, a naval fortress on Kotlin Island in the Gulf of Finland that served as the base of the Russian Baltic Fleet and as a guardpost for the approaches to Petrograd, 55 kilometres (34 mi) away. The rebellion was crushed by the Red Army after a 12-day military campaign, resulting in several thousand deaths.

According to Lenin, the crisis was the most critical the regime had yet faced, "undoubtedly more dangerous than Denikin, Yudenich, and Kolchak combined."

Nat Turner's slave rebellion

Nat Turner's Rebellion (also known as the Southampton Insurrection) was a slave rebellion that took place in Southampton County, Virginia, in August 1831, led by Nat Turner. Rebel slaves killed from 55 to 65 people, at least 51 being white. The rebellion was put down within a few days, but Turner survived in hiding for more than two months afterwards. The rebellion was effectively suppressed at Belmont Plantation on the morning of August 23, 1831.There was widespread fear in the aftermath, and white militias organized in retaliation against the slaves. The state executed 56 slaves accused of being part of the rebellion, and many non-participant slaves were punished in the frenzy. Approximately 120 slaves and free blacks were murdered by militias and mobs in the area. State legislatures passed new laws prohibiting education of slaves and free black people, restricting rights of assembly and other civil liberties for free black people, and requiring white ministers to be present at all worship services.

North-West Rebellion

The North-West Rebellion (or the North-West Resistance, Saskatchewan Rebellion, Northwest Uprising, or Second Riel Rebellion) of 1885 was a brief and unsuccessful uprising by the Métis people under Louis Riel and an associated uprising by First Nations Cree and Assiniboine of the District of Saskatchewan against the government of Canada. Many Métis felt Canada was not protecting their rights, their land and their survival as a distinct people. Riel had been invited to lead the movement of protest. He turned it into a military action with a heavily religious tone. This alienated Catholic clergy, whites, most Indians and some Métis. But he had the allegiance of a couple hundred armed Métis, a smaller number of other Aboriginal people and at least one white man at Batoche in May 1885, confronting 900 Canadian army soldiers plus some armed local residents. About 91 people would die in the fighting that occurred that spring, before the rebellion's collapse.Despite some notable early victories at Duck Lake, Fish Creek and Cut Knife, the rebellion ended when the Métis were defeated at the Siege of Batoche. The remaining Aboriginal allies scattered. Riel was captured and put on trial. He was convicted of treason and despite many pleas across Canada for amnesty, he was hanged. Riel became a heroic martyr to Francophone Canada, and ethnic tensions escalated into a major national division that was never resolved. Due to the key role that the Canadian Pacific Railway played in transporting troops, Conservative political support for it increased and Parliament authorized funds to complete the country's first transcontinental railway. Although only a few hundred people were directly affected in Saskatchewan, the long-term result was that the Prairie Provinces would be controlled by English speakers, not French. A much more important long-term impact was the bitter alienation French speakers across Canada showed, and anger against the repression of their countrymen.

Rani of Jhansi

Lakshmibai, the Rani of Jhansi (pronunciation ; 19 November 1828 – 18 June 1858), was the queen of the princely state of Jhansi in North India currently present in Jhansi district in Uttar Pradesh, India. She was one of the leading figures of the Indian Rebellion of 1857 and became a symbol of resistance to the British Raj for Indian nationalists.

Shays' Rebellion

Shays' Rebellion was an armed uprising in Massachusetts, mostly in and around Springfield during 1786 and 1787. American Revolutionary War veteran Daniel Shays led four thousand rebels (called Shaysites) in a protest against economic and civil rights injustices. Shays was a farmhand from Massachusetts at the beginning of the Revolutionary War; he joined the Continental Army, saw action at the Battles of Lexington and Concord, Battle of Bunker Hill, and Battles of Saratoga, and was eventually wounded in action.

In 1787, Shays' rebels marched on the United States' Armory at Springfield in an unsuccessful attempt to seize its weaponry and overthrow the government. The federal government found itself unable to finance troops to put down the rebellion, and it was consequently put down by the Massachusetts State militia and a privately funded local militia. The widely held view was that the Articles of Confederation needed to be reformed as the country's governing document, and the events of the rebellion served as a catalyst for the Constitutional Convention and the creation of the new government.The shock of Shays' Rebellion drew retired General George Washington back into public life, leading to his two terms as the first president of the United States. There is still debate among scholars concerning the rebellion's influence on the Constitution and its ratification.

Star Wars Rebels

Star Wars Rebels is an American 3D CGI animated television series produced by Lucasfilm Animation. With its story beginning fourteen years after Revenge of the Sith and five years before A New Hope, Rebels takes place during an era when the Galactic Empire is securing its grip on the galaxy. Imperial forces are hunting down the last of the Jedi Knights while a fledgling rebellion against the Empire is taking form. The visual style of Rebels is inspired by the original Star Wars trilogy concept art by Ralph McQuarrie.The series premiered as a one-hour television film, Spark of Rebellion, on October 3, 2014, on Disney Channel prior to the premiere of the series on October 13 on Disney XD. The first season consisted of 14 episodes (released as four shorts, a film, Spark of Rebellion, and 13 regular episodes) and the series features new characters along with ones from the original trilogy. The second season of 20 episodes premiered on June 20, 2015, with a one-hour television film, The Siege of Lothal. The third season of 19 episodes premiered on September 24, 2016, with another one-hour television film, Star Wars Rebels: Steps Into Shadow. On April 15, 2017, during Star Wars Celebration, it was announced the fourth season would be its last: it premiered on October 16, 2017, with another one-hour television film, Heroes of Mandalore, and its final episode aired on March 5, 2018.Dave Filoni, Simon Kinberg and Greg Weisman served as executive producers of season one. Weisman left the show after season one. Filoni was also the Supervising Director for the first two seasons, a role he relinquished after accepting a promotion that expanded his creative role into overseeing all Lucasfilm Animation projects; he chose Justin Ridge to succeed him for season three.The series has been generally well received with several award winnings and nominations. A number of tie-in media has been released to expand upon the series' lore such as the comic book series Kanan and the novel Star Wars: A New Dawn.

Taiping Rebellion

The Taiping Rebellion, also known as the Taiping Civil War or the Taiping Revolution, was a massive rebellion or total civil war in China that was waged from 1850 to 1864 between the established Manchu-led Qing dynasty and the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom under Hong Xiuquan.

The Taiping Heavenly Kingdom was an oppositional state based in Tianjing (present-day Nanjing) with a Christian millenarian agenda to initiate a major transformation of society. A self-proclaimed convert to Christianity and brother of Jesus Christ, Hong Xiuquan Jesus led an army that controlled a significant part of southern China during the middle of the 19th century, eventually expanding to command a population base of nearly 30 million people.

Devolving into total war—with any and all civilian-associated resources and infrastructure as legitimate military targets—the conflict was the largest in China since the Qing conquest in 1644, and it also ranks as one of the bloodiest wars in human history, the bloodiest civil war, and the largest conflict of the 19th century, with estimates of the war dead ranging from 20–70 million to as high as 100 million, with millions more displaced.The war was mostly fought in the provinces of Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi and Hubei, but over 14 years of war the Taiping Army had marched through every province of China proper except Gansu.

The Taiping Rebellion began in the southern province of Guangxi when local officials launched a campaign of religious persecution against a millenarian sect known as the God Worshipping Society led by Hong Xiuquan, who believed himself to be the younger brother of Jesus Christ. The goals of the Taipings were religious, nationalist, and political in nature; they sought the conversion of the Chinese people to the Taiping's version of Christianity, the overthrow of the ruling Manchus, and a wholesale transformation and reformation of the state. Rather than simply supplanting the ruling class, the Taipings sought to upend the moral and social order of China.Hostilities began on January 1, 1851, when the Qing Green Standard Army launched an attack against the God Worshipping Society at the town of Jintian, Guangxi. Hong declared himself the Heavenly King of the Heavenly Kingdom of Peace (or Taiping Heavenly Kingdom), from which comes the term "Taipings" that has often been applied to them in the English language. The Taipings began marching north in September 1851 to escape Qing forces closing in on them. On March 19, 1853, the Taipings captured the city of Nanjing and Hong declared it the Heavenly Capital of his kingdom.

For a decade the Taiping occupied and fought across much of the mid and lower Yangtze valley, some of the wealthiest and most productive lands in the Qing empire. The Taiping nearly managed to capture the Qing capital of Beijing with a northern expedition launched in May 1853, and were successful in capturing large parts of Anhui, Jiangxi and Hubei provinces with the concurrent Western Expedition. Qing imperial troops proved to be largely ineffective in halting Taiping advances, focusing on a perpetually stalemated siege of Nanjing. In Hunan, a local irregular army called the Xiang Army or Hunan Army, under the personal leadership of Zeng Guofan, became the main armed force fighting for the Qing against the Taiping. Zeng's Xiang Army proved effective in gradually turning back the Taiping advance in the western theater of the war.

In 1856 the Taiping were weakened after infighting following an attempted coup led by its East King, Yang Xiuqing. During this time the Xiang Army managed to gradually retake much of Hubei and Jiangxi province. In May 1860 the Taiping defeated the imperial forces that had been besieging Nanjing since 1853, eliminating them from the region and opening the way for a successful invasion of southern Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces, the wealthiest region of the Qing Empire. While Taiping forces were preoccupied in Jiangsu, Zeng's forces moved down the Yangzi River, capturing Anqing on September 5, 1861.

In May 1862 the Xiang Army began directly besieging Nanjing and managed to hold firm despite numerous attempts by the numerically superior Taiping Army to dislodge them. Hong died on June 1, 1864, and Nanjing fell shortly after, on July 19. After the fall of Nanjing, Zeng Guofan and many of his protégés, such as Li Hongzhang and Zuo Zongtang, were celebrated as saviors of the Qing empire and became some of the most powerful men in late-19th-century China. A small remainder of loyal Taiping forces continued to fight in northern Zhejiang, rallying behind Hong's teenage son Tianguifu, but after Tianguifu's capture on October 25, 1864, Taiping resistance was gradually pushed into the highlands of Jiangxi, Zhejiang, Fujian and finally Guangdong, where one of the last Taiping loyalists, Wang Haiyang, was defeated on January 29, 1866.

Whiskey Rebellion

The Whiskey Rebellion (also known as the Whiskey Insurrection) was a tax protest in the United States beginning in 1791 and ending in 1794 during the presidency of George Washington, ultimately under the command of American Revolutionary war veteran Major James McFarlane. The so-called "whiskey tax" was the first tax imposed on a domestic product by the newly formed federal government. It became law in 1791, and was intended to generate revenue for the war debt incurred during the Revolutionary War. The tax applied to all distilled spirits, but American whiskey was by far the country's most popular distilled beverage in the 18th century, so the excise became widely known as a "whiskey tax". Farmers of the western frontier were accustomed to distilling their surplus rye, barley, wheat, corn, or fermented grain mixtures into whiskey. These farmers resisted the tax. In these regions, whiskey often served as a medium of exchange. Many of the resisters were war veterans who believed that they were fighting for the principles of the American Revolution, in particular against taxation without local representation, while the federal government maintained that the taxes were the legal expression of Congressional taxation powers.

Throughout Western Pennsylvania counties, protesters used violence and intimidation to prevent federal officials from collecting the tax. Resistance came to a climax in July 1794, when a U.S. marshal arrived in western Pennsylvania to serve writs to distillers who had not paid the excise. The alarm was raised, and more than 500 armed men attacked the fortified home of tax inspector General John Neville. Washington responded by sending peace commissioners to western Pennsylvania to negotiate with the rebels, while at the same time calling on governors to send a militia force to enforce the tax. Washington himself rode at the head of an army to suppress the insurgency, with 13,000 militiamen provided by the governors of Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. The rebels all went home before the arrival of the army, and there was no confrontation. About 20 men were arrested, but all were later acquitted or pardoned. Most distillers in nearby Kentucky were found to be all but impossible to tax—in the next six years, over 175 distillers from Kentucky were convicted of violating the tax law. Numerous examples of resistance are recorded in court documents and newspaper accounts.The Whiskey Rebellion demonstrated that the new national government had the will and ability to suppress violent resistance to its laws, though the whiskey excise remained difficult to collect. The events contributed to the formation of political parties in the United States, a process already underway. The whiskey tax was repealed in the early 1800s during the Jefferson administration.

Group pressures
Conforming oneself

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