Books: Non-Fiction

After Gandhi: One Hundred Years of Nonviolent Resistance

Book — Non-fiction. By Anne Sibley O’Brien and Perry Edmund O’Brien. 2009. 192 pages.
Stories about 15 activists who continue in the tradition of Gandhi, written and illustrated for upper elementary and middle school.

Time Periods: 20th Century
Themes: Organizing, World History/Global Studies

In a moving combination of quotations, drawings and stories, After Gandhi: One Hundred Years of Nonviolent Resistance looks back at some of the world’s most powerful leaders of nonviolent resistance. From Gandhi’s model of nonviolent resistance to Wangari Maathai’s Nobel Peace Prize and Muhammad Ali’s opposition to the Vietnam War draft, this book chronicles fifteen individuals (Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela, Charles Perkins, César Chávez, Aung San Suu Kyi, Vaclav Havel, and Wangari Maathai and groups such as the student activists of Tiananmen Square and the Madres de Plaza de Mayo in Argentina) who peacefully and willfully strove to make a difference.

The book spans history as it educates readers about the diverse range of people who both independently and collectively changed the world. Its final chapter, “The Future of Nonviolence,” stresses the importance of nonviolent activism and the limitless forms that this type of resistance can take — probing readers to look no farther than themselves for future ideas and new courses of action.

ISBN: 9781580891295 | Charlesbridge Publishing

About the Authors

Perry Edmond O’Brien is a former Army medic who served in Afghanistan and received an honorable discharge as a conscientious objector. He is the founder of, a website that helps servicemen navigate the conscientious objector application process. Perry majored in political theory at Cornell University and now works as a labor organizer in New York City.

Anne Sibley O’Brien was introduced to nonviolent resistance as a student at Mount Holyoke College, where she protested the Vietnam War in the 1970s. Since then she has joined marches, rallies, and campaigns for different causes. She has illustrated many picture books, including Talking Walls and other titles by Margy Burns Knight, and received the 1997 National Education Association Author-Illustrator Human and Civil Rights Award. She wrote and illustrated The Legend of Hong Kil Dong, winner of the Aesop Prize and the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature. The mother of two grown children, Anne lives with her husband on an island in Maine.