Protest is a variety of policy conflict, more direct than dipolomacy or political negotiation and less extreme than insurrection or rebellion. Protesters may wish to view their actions as a form of negotiation and their opponents may wish to view the protests as a form of insurrection. protests occur when the political establishment excludes or surpresses a sizeable plurality of opinion and seeks to make that opinion illegitimate. Protest demonstrates the size of the dissenting plurality and forces the establishment to recognize that assent to a political policy is insufficient. In such a situation, consent is absent. Protest makes what Noam Choamsky calls the "manufacture of consent" impossible.
Victory in protest is obtained when the establishment concedes the protesters right to exist.