active refusal to obey certain laws, demands and commands of a government or of an occupying power without resorting to physical violence. The American author Henry David Thoreau pioneered the modern theory behind this practice in his 1849 essay Civil Disobedience. In seeking an active form of civil disobedience, one may choose to deliberately break certain laws, such as by forming a peaceful blockade or occupying a facility illegally.
In the face of tyranny and injustice, it is the people's duty to practice civil disobedience to fight oppression.
by El Oaxuco August 2, 2007
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A euphemism for an illegal activity done in the name of a cause. Acts of civil disobedience can include:

firebombing a development in the name of the environment
smashing a McDonalds sign in the name of fair trade
rioting in the name of peace.
The hippies who torched the ski resort aren't criminals; they performed an act of civil disobedience
by mjl317 August 2, 2006
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