Does protesting work?


Read through the following text and look up any vocabulary you are not sure about before answering the questions.

Protests are a form of nonviolent demonstration that is used to express public opinion or dissatisfaction. The goal of a protest is to bring attention to an issue and make people aware of it.

However, does protesting work? It’s difficult to say for sure, because the answer depends on what you define as success. For example, if the goal is to get rid of a dictator and there are protests in the streets, but he doesn’t step down from power, then the protests have failed. However, if the goal was just to raise awareness about an issue and make people more sympathetic to it then those protests have been successful.

The world is not perfect. It never has been, and it never will be. There are many things that are wrong with our society, and there are many things we can do to change it. One of the best ways to create change is by protesting.

As a society, we need to protest more often because it helps us hold our government accountable for their actions. If we stop protesting, then the government has no reason to try and make changes for the betterment of society as a whole. Protesting also helps us create awareness about issues that may not be on people’s radars otherwise.


Try and use the following vocabulary when answering the question.

Protest (noun) = when you do something show your disagreement towards something or someone.
Example: “There was a protest outside Downing Street yesterday by climate change protestors”.

Protest (verb) = to do something.
Example: “We decided to protest against the high petrol prices by blocking the entrance to the petrol station”.

Demonstration (noun) = Where a group of people meet at a specific location to show your disagreement towards something or someone.
Example: “I’m not going into London on Saturday because there is supposed to be a big demonstration in Oxford Street”.

The question

Try and have a conversation for 2-3 minutes answering the following question.

Does protesting work?

Sample Answer

Try and find different vocabulary or grammar structures that you could use to improve or add to your answer.

Some people think that we should not protest because it only creates conflict and does not yield results. I think these people don’t understand what protests can do, such as giving voice to minorities, shaping public opinion, and fighting for human rights.

We live in a very unequal society so the people with the most power need to be reminded when their actions hurt the less privileged groups of people that live among them. Protests are one way to do that.

Additional Questions

Keep the conversation going with these follow questions related to Does protesting work?
  • Have you ever been on a protest? What was it for? What was your experience like?
  • If you felt strongly enough about the issue would you go on a protest?
  • Can you think of any recent protests where you live?
  • What type of people go on protests?
  • What other ways to voice your opinion are there aside from protests?
  • Are protests effective? Were they ever effective?

Question Details


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