“You can’t wait for the leadership to catch up to the people.” — Harriet Rowan, Capitol occupation organizer
a film about the 2011 Wisconsin Uprising
“Informative, complex, and inspiring… poignantly illustrates the challenges of doing democracy, of mobilizing for a just cause, and of coalition-building. ” — Professor Robert Benford, University of South Florida
Nonviolent mass insurgencies are rare, spontaneous, and unpredictable creatures. The trick is, how to make the most of one when it emerges? The 2011 Wisconsin Uprising was one such beautiful creature, a largely organic movement that united tens of thousands of people in a weeks-long public protest.
Long-time editor of the Madison-based Progressive magazine, Matt Rothschild, called the Wisconsin Uprising “the single most exhilarating political experience in my life.” He was not alone. It’s hard now to describe the spirit of the protests – the positive energy and good will and camaraderie. Defeat seemed impossible…
Divided We Fall traces the genesis of one of the largest sustained protests in US history – recapturing the joy, creativity, and determination of activists from diverse walks of life as well as revealing some pitfalls faced by contemporary social movements.
Divided We Fall cogently resonates with what I’ve experienced and learned across my career as an activist-scholar. —Professor Rob Benford, University of South Florida
Our film combines original in-depth interviews with dramatic citizen-produced video and photos from a wide variety of sources to create a compelling narrative of resistance to the attack on collective bargaining for public workers – the first item in the austerity agenda advanced by Governor Scott Walker’s administration.
Our interviewees include graduate teaching assistants at the center of the movement as well as labor leaders, scholars and pundits such as the late Marty Beil (executive director, AFSCME Council 24), Frank Emspak (Workers Independent News), Professor Katherine Cramer (author, The Politics of Resentment) and Matthew Rothschild, long-time editor of the Progressive magazine.
This important documentary provides some of the best history available about these events… a powerful cinematic narrative… Professor David Nack, University of Wisconsin School for Workers
Divided We Fall gets beneath the surface of the mass protests, chants, and rallies to shed light on what really happened in Madison in 2011.