What is an example from history of how deviance encourages social change?  

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mkoren eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The use of nonviolent protest is an example of how deviant behavior may bring about social change. This is especially true in the Civil Rights movement. When Rosa Parks got arrested, the African-Americans of Montgomery organized the Montgomery Bus Boycott. They refused to ride the buses until segregation on the bus system ended. It took 381 days of walking, biking, and carpooling, but eventually the courts ruled the segregation on city buses was illegal. African Americans were willing to fight the social custom of segregation in the South.

Many people peacefully protested the use of other Jim Crow laws in the South. The Freedom Riders can from the North to the South to peacefully protest the segregation in the South. Many people of different races attended the March on Washington in 1963 to protest the lack of rights African Americans faced. Many people of different races marched in solidarity from Selma to Montgomery after the first peaceful protest to get voting rights for African Americans ended with violence by the police. This march helped lead to the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. 

As a result of these and other actions, laws were changed in the South. Today, African Americans are free to vote without restrictions. There is no legalized segregation in restaurants, schools, and other public facilities throughout the country. We now see more inter-racial couples and more inter-racial marriages. Because of the protests of people years ago, we have seen social change in the area of Civil Rights and racial acceptance.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

One possible example of this is the gay rights movement in the US.  Homosexuality, especially open homosexuality, has been seen as a deviant behavior.  However, as more people were willing to "come out" gay rights have been put on the agenda and serious progress has been made towards equality for gay people.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator
I think the Civil Rights Movement is a great example of deviance creating social change. Groups of people decided that segregation and discrimination were wrong. They stood up to their entire society and acted on their beliefs. In the end, they slowly changed society.