Mohandas Gandhi — the great promoter of human rights and perhaps one of the most influential men of the 20th century — brought independence to India in 1947. His teachings against colonialism, racism and violence informed and inspired Martin Luther King and the Civil Rights movement, and Nelson Mandela and the fight against apartheid in South Africa.
That's a fight Gandhi's granddaughter Ela Gandhi crusaded for, embracing his philosophy of non-violent action. It has guided her work in South Africa, as both a member of Parliament and an activist. This year she is reflecting on Satyagraha the call Gandhi made for non-violent activism and civil disobedience 100 years ago.
This Hour On Point: Gandhi's granddaughter, Ela Gandhi, on how to use Gandhi's teachings today.
Quotes from the Show:
"I was very much influenced by the idea of non-violence and the Gandhian notion of love." Ela Gandhi
"If each one of us lives a simple life, we can all share the bounties of the world." Ela Gandhi
"For men to survive this century, [Gandhi's] message of non-violence is the most relevant today." Ela Gandhi
"Gandhi was a master negotiator. He was a master at putting himself in the other person's shoes and look at the problem, not the person. And those are the lessons that we need to apply today." William L. Ury
"We need to change the language of non-violence because, as it currently is, it somehow does not appeal to people." William L. Ury
"What we need to remember is that Mahatma Gandhi was a person like you and I who transformed himself." Ela Gandhi
Ela Gandhi, granddaughter of Mohandas Gandhi. She runs a monthly newspaper in South Africa dedicated to non-violence and sustainable development. She founded a domestic violence program to assist women, and to help make them self-sufficient. She served as a member of parliament for the African National Congress from 1994 to 2004.
William L. Ury, director of the Global Negotiation Project and co-founder of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.
This program aired on December 5, 2006.