Public Resource
Harnessing the enormous untapped power of celebrity to help social movements
Paul Engler. Waging Nonviolence

Building on the long legacy of activist entertainers, here are five ways movements for justice and famous supporters can partner to promote change. First, celebrities and movements can make better political endorsements together: they can look to social justice organizations for guidance as to which candidates have listened to them and committed to processes to govern in the best interest of their communities. Second, celebrities can amplify trigger events, which can draw people with no prior interest or experience in politics into mass protests. Third, celebrities can boost organizing campaigns, especially at pivotal campaign junctures. Fourth, celebrities can expand the Overton window by lending their support to causes and movements that exist outside of current norms, and thereby work to expand the bounds of public acceptance. Fifth, they can fuel boycotts by putting extra pressure on corporations.