directory

Otpor!

Otpor! (Resistance!) was a Serbian youth movement that existed from 1998 to 2003, which rebelled non-violently against the regime of Slobodan Milošević. The group was founded on October 10, 1998, as a reaction to the passing of two repressive university and media laws by the then Serbian government, in which especially the Prime minister and Milošević-confidant Mirko Marjanović was instrumental. Ideologically, Otpor! was oriented on The Politics of Nonviolent Action, one of Gene Sharp’s main works, which was partially translated into Serbian. The non-violent campaigns that took place in the following two years spread quickly across the whole of Serbia through the support of more than seventy thousand national supporters and the financial support of the American government. Otpor! is considered to have had a crucial influence in the downfall of President Milošević on October 5, 2000. Their distinctive symbol – a raised fist – was often seen on t-shirts, posters, and the walls of buildings. The key medium, however, was a sticker proclaiming “Gotov je!” (“He is finished!”). In 2003, a political party emerged from the group, but in the following parliamentary elections it failed to achieve five percent of the votes, and was subsequently absorbed into the Democratic Serbian Party (DSS).