Publication Details

Martin, B. (2015). How activists can challenge double standards. Interface: a journal for and about social movements, 7 (2), 201-213.


Activists often encounter double standards: powerful groups make a huge outcry about a problem, meanwhile ignoring their own greater role in exactly the same problem. For example, governments with major nuclear arsenals raise the alarm about the possibility that others might acquire nuclear weapons. Powerful groups use a variety of tactics to reduce awareness and concern about their own actions while raising the alarm about others; activists can try to counter these tactics. As a general rule, it is better for campaigners to choose methods that highlight and accentuate double standards and make it more difficult for opponents to adopt the high ground.