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Social movements

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Diana Bernales

on 27 October 2012

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Transcript of Social movements

Social Movements Society seen as a battle of struggle and conflict for the construction of the identity and lifestyle
Politics organized not only in the nation-state
New types of movements: 1) critics not for a particular group, 2) change public view, culture and lifestyle, 3) informal, 4) mass media important First approach Fighting for the extension of citizenship rights
Non hierarchical
Absorbed by the state and into the mainstream politics, other movements were ignored
It shaped the new form of the state
One problem was that sociologists were “also let to focus on the state as the site of modern politics and the labor movement as the dominant political face” (P. 89) Legacy of the labor movement Nowadays social movements 1) Resource Movement Theory
2) New Social movement Theory
3) Synthesis
4) Conclusions THEORIES Introduction Social movements as continuum not as bureaucratization and hierarchies
“social movement organizations that rely on the subscriptions of members without involving them in decision-making or action are at one end of the continuum” (P. 90)
They have helped to re-think the political sociology and they have changed the central point of attention which was the nation-state Premise: “social phenomena is the result of individual decisions and actions”
functionalism sees social movement 1) as a result of social dysfunctional 2) “protest is the result of expectations expanding more rapidly than real opportunities so that groups who experience themselves as marginalized and lacking in influence will turn collective action to redress their grievances” (92)
RMT: Grievances is not the only explanation Resource Mobilization Theory and Beyond Olson: how is it that individuals are involved in collective action as a result of rational consideration of their own interests
No accepted the cultural turn
Liberal theory: individualistic and the state is saw as the arena of politics proper
Participation depends on how the individuals sees themselves 1) social choices must to be explained by the individuals
2)individuals act rationally to maximize their interest and minimize theirs costs.
Free rider: “it is in the very nature of a public good that no individual in a particular group can feasibly be prevented from benefiting from it if is enjoyed by others in that group” (93) Resource mobilization theory: the premises material and non material resources.
mobilization as the process by groups manage resources for the pursuit of their goals.
individuals are not isolated as Olson assumed, they live in communities so they participate in social movements to approach a common goal. That is why the cost of participation is lower. RTM: Oberschall As Olson, they have the premise of incompatibility of individual self-interest and collective action
The money is considered the principal resource
Social movements have rationality
The free rider problem does not appear when the participation of most individuals is cost free RTM: Zald and McCarthy The state is the most important actor because it repress or facilitates social movements
“some social movements are tolerated even encouraged to the point where they become part of the polis that is where they gain routine access to the government” (97)
Absorption of social movements: 1) adhering to a political party 2) dissolution 3) the constitution of a pressure group 4) creating a new law or a new party
RTM: Tilly Tilly
“Repertories of social movements”: ways which a group uses its resources resources to bring about a common end.
Interest can not be reduced to the preferences
social movements arise as part of a general wave of social unrest generally precipitated by some event, social movements organizations compete with each other
He shows that the real question for this approach is “why is that rational individuals participate in a collective action?” Snow: actors define grievances and then forge identities and transform opportunities in order to bring about social movements
Collective action frame “mobilization take place face to face interaction in what they call micro mobilization”
Frame alignments: strategies which depend on how far individuals are from the orientation of the movement: 1) frame bridging, frame amplification, frame extension, frame transformation.
“they (the frames) are powerful if they make claims which resonate with central ideas and meanings already existing in the population and as such they contribute to the escalation and intensity of collective action which characterizes the upswing of a cycle of protest” (p. 102) The cultural Turn It is important to maintain a balance between the resonance of the movement´s message with the political culture
Importance of the political opportunities: defined by the group of actors which are capable to take advantage of what gives the political system
Culture in this approach ends up being reduced as a resource
Definition of framing (Mc Adam) “conscious strategic efforts by groups of people to fashion shared understandings of the world and of themselves that legitimate and motivate collective actions” (104)
Importance on recognizing in the others the possibility of achieving goals The cultural Turn Principle characteristics
It has its roots in Marxism theory
Centrality of conflict in the society because it is the motor of social change (between dominates and dominator)
Individuals are not isolated
“Since the ordering of social relations is the product of social action, and social movements are the collective agents of social action, social movements are not exceptional and dramatic events” New social Movement theory: Conflict and culture The history is the history of classes. Classes for Touraine don´t fight for the control of production, they do it for the control of historicity.
Historicity is understood as “The process by which society is produced as a result of conscious reflection on social action and its condition” (P. 108)
In a post-industrial society, the control is over the knowledge and information, the struggle is for the people´s right to choose their own self-determination
Social action: “action is the behavior of an actor guided by cultural orientations and set within social relations defined by an unequal connection with the social control of choose of those orientations” (P. 109)
Social relations are relations of power for the control of historicity Alain Touraine: social movements and the sociology of action Does not see the importance of the power of state because it is not a field of struggle
Does not develop the concept of cultural politic
Over emphasizes ideology
Does not identify a concrete enemy (only “the system”)
“social change is not achieved by revealing the truth as Touraine seems to suppose, but rather by challenging received understandings and introducing few frameworks within which change becomes possible and desirable” (P. 111) Alain Touraine: social movements and the sociology of action (critics) He introduced some arguments of RTM to avoid the structuralism of Touraine
Importance of the collective contestation to search an identity, to construct a “we” which would lead to forms of solidarity and organization
For Melucci, the actors are award of their own action
“in his view, RMT is useful for the way in which stresses the external relationships of social movements to the field of systematic opportunities and constrains within action takes place”
Melucci how / Touraine why Alberto Melucci: developmentes in new social movement theory Participation is made on the interaction
takes distance from Touraine and RMT, the most important for him is the invisible networks
“to push other to recognize something which they themselves recognize they struggle to affirm what others deny”
The role of institutions as mediators
Identity is constructed by the manipulation of symbols which are effective in particular social contexts
Symbols are manipulated according to him, in order to forge a collective identity Importance of culture because it shapes the perception of aims and strategies
Social movement according to Diani: specific social dynamic, consisting networks of informal interaction between a plurality of individuals.
This definition emphasizes 4 points:
1) as a network of informal interactions
2) “the boundaries of a social movement network are defined by the specific collective id shared by the actors in the interaction” (P.120)
3) a common enemy. The difference between RMT and NSM is that the first the social movements effect change through the time and for NSM see the social movements as challenging to the shared meanings.
4) “a social movement is network of informal interactions between a plurality of individuals, groups and or organizations engage involved in a political or cultural conflict on the basis of a shared collective identity”
No difference between politics and culture Towards a synthesis: the definition of social movement Importance of new technologies that have broken the limits of national territory of social movements.
Della Porta: “transnational networks of actors that define their causes as global and organize protest campaigns and other forms of action that target more than one state and or international government organization” Global social movements - Anonymous Examples
-Importance of the networks
-Importance of resources
-State as a structure that constrains and enables
- State absorbed social movements and transformed them in mainstream politic Contemporary political sociology. Globalization, politics and power. Second edition. Kate Nash
Power in movement. Tarrow References Conclusions Linked to the structure of politic opportunities
Collective action needs resources to stop being passive and opportunities to use them
The collective action happens when: 1) it is necessary to make a reform 2) institutional access 3) alliances change and elites conflicts emerged.
Social movements became popular in 1930-1960 and they fight for the resources but without seeing the structure of opportunities
Dimension of opportunities: it depends on the politic frame Tarrow: development of social movements Marx: contradictions of classes leads to mobilization
Lenin: it is necessary to have an organization that structures the collective action
Gramsci: there must to be a cultural based to get the consensus
After 60s: Olson (organization) Zald and McCarthy: there are several reasons which make a person participate in a social movement and these are not the benefits. Importance of Networks

“social movements not only deliberately differ from interest groups and political parties in style and organization, but they are committed to creating new forms of political action that give greater emphasis to informal and inclusive ways of participating, contesting official definitions of events and processes and in the process, remaking the identities not just of those directly involved but of everyone” (P. 129) Importance of Networks
Try to include the indifferent people in one social movement is the principal motivation.
“social movements not only deliberately differ from interest groups and political parties in style and organization, but they are committed to creating new forms of political action that give greater emphasis to informal and inclusive ways of participating, contesting official definitions of events and processes and in the process, remaking the identities not just of those directly involved but of everyone” (129)
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