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Book part
Publication date: 2 May 2018

Ram Alagan, Robert O. White and Seela Aladuwaka

This research underlines the usefulness of Civil Rights Geographic Information Systems (CR-GIS) for understanding the social struggles and assessing the critical needs of…

Abstract

This research underlines the usefulness of Civil Rights Geographic Information Systems (CR-GIS) for understanding the social struggles and assessing the critical needs of the disempowered population of Alabama’s “Black Belt.” The social struggles have been persistent for decades in the Southern states, particularly in Alabama. Researchers have recognized the political and historical root causes and implications for these social struggles. The geographic region of Alabama’s Black Belt is significant because it became the epicenter of the Civil Rights struggle and still represents the vestiges of the social policy known as “Jim Crow.”

Although GIS has a great potential to explore social and political struggles, currently, it is not profoundly associated with Civil Rights studies. This research employs CR-GIS to illustrate the impact of the disfranchisement caused by biased geopolitics in three selected cases/issues: (1) gerrymandering and voting rights, (2) transportation, and (3) poverty in the State of Alabama. While there has been some progress in overcoming the social struggles in the Black Belt, there is a need for qualitative and quantitative analyses to understand persistent social, economic, and Civil Rights struggles in the region. GIS could be a valuable tool to understand and explore the social struggles in the disempowered communities of the “Black Belt” in Alabama. By incorporating the existing information and conducting ground truth studies, this research will lay the basic foundation for extended research by creating a policy template for empowering the disempowered for better social, economic, and political integration in the “Black Belt region.”

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Environment, Politics, and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-775-1

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Book part
Publication date: 15 December 2005

Dayo F. Gore

This article examines the early post-World War II civil rights organizing of black women radicals affiliated with the organized left. It details the work of these women in…

Abstract

This article examines the early post-World War II civil rights organizing of black women radicals affiliated with the organized left. It details the work of these women in such organizations as the Civil Rights Congress and Freedom newspaper as they fought to challenge the unjust conviction and sentencing of black defendants caught in the racial machinations of U.S. local and state criminal justice systems. These campaigns against what was provocatively called “legal lynching” formed a cornerstone of African American civil rights activism in the early postwar years. In centering the civil rights politics and organizing of these black women radicals, a more detailed picture emerges of the Communist Party-supported anti-legal lynching campaigns. Such a perspective moves beyond a view of civil rights legal activism as solely the work of lawyers, to examining the ways committed activists within the U.S. left, helped to build this legal activism and sustain an important left base in the U.S. during the Cold War.

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Crime and Punishment: Perspectives from the Humanities
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-245-0

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Book part
Publication date: 19 September 2012

Gregory M. Maney

A growing body of research on nonviolent movements has focused upon backfire or the paradox of repression, whereby repression increases support for these movements and the…

Abstract

A growing body of research on nonviolent movements has focused upon backfire or the paradox of repression, whereby repression increases support for these movements and the likelihood of their achieving their goals. The relationship between reforms and nonviolent movements, however, has received less attention. The existence of the paradox of repression suggests the inverse possibility of the paradox of reform, whereby reforms drain support away from nonviolent movements or even contribute to greater support for violent forms of contention. An exploratory, triangulated analysis of the civil rights movement in Northern Ireland establishes an instance of the paradox. Within the civil rights movement, the announcement of reforms contributed to the exiting of moderates and the growing influence of those less committed to nonviolent forms of contention. Dominant group backlash resulted in vigilante attacks on both the movement and minority areas, intensified repression, and stalling on promised reforms. In response to these changed conditions, many in the minority group came to see armed rebellion as a more viable form of struggle for social justice than nonviolent protest. The case underscores the need to carefully consider the mediating role of reforms in the relationship between repression and nonviolent mobilization as well as to recognize multiple internal and external obstacles that promised yet slowly implemented reforms can present to movements pursuing social change through nonviolence.

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Nonviolent Conflict and Civil Resistance
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-346-9

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Book part
Publication date: 9 April 2003

Jonathan Goldberg-Hiller

The progressive limits to rights mobilization have become starkly apparent in the past two decades. No new suspect classes have been forthcoming from the Supreme Court…

Abstract

The progressive limits to rights mobilization have become starkly apparent in the past two decades. No new suspect classes have been forthcoming from the Supreme Court since 1977 despite continued demands for legal recognition by lesbians and gays, indigenous peoples and others interested in expanding civil rights doctrine. Public tolerance for civil rights measures has likewise dried up. Since the 1960s, referenda on civil rights have halted affirmative action programs, limited school busing and housing discrimination protections, promoted English-only laws, limited AIDS policies, and ended the judicial recognition of same-sex marriage, among other issues. Nearly 80% of these referenda have had outcomes realizing the Madisonian fear of “majority tyranny”1 and signaling the Nietzschean dread of a politics of resentment (Brown, 1995, p. 214; Connolly, 1991, p. 64).

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Studies in Law, Politics and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-209-2

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Book part
Publication date: 1 October 2008

Hana E. Brown

Existing research argues that repression hindered the ability of local civil rights movements to influence the development of local War on Poverty programs; however, the…

Abstract

Existing research argues that repression hindered the ability of local civil rights movements to influence the development of local War on Poverty programs; however, the Virginia civil rights struggle defies this pattern. This comparative county-level study melds institutionalist accounts of welfare state development with an analysis of movement repression in order to explain this paradox. A distinction is made between situational and institutional repression. While scholars focus on the former and its negative impact on mobilization, this study suggests that institutional repression can have the opposite effect, unifying movements and facilitating their influence on the formation and implementation of poverty policy.

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Politics and Public Policy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-178-7

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Book part
Publication date: 18 April 2017

Gianluca De Fazio

Hostile countermobilization is a crucial, yet relatively understudied, factor in radicalizing movement tactics and generating political violence. This chapter focuses on…

Abstract

Hostile countermobilization is a crucial, yet relatively understudied, factor in radicalizing movement tactics and generating political violence. This chapter focuses on the movement–countermovement interactions between the Civil Rights Movement and the Loyalist movement in Northern Ireland to clarify the emergence and intensification of political violence in the 1968–1969 years. The interactions between the civil rights mobilization and the loyalist countermobilization created the conditions to fuel both protest-based and sectarian violence, setting the terrain for the eruption of the Troubles. Relying on quantitative data on the actors participating to contentious collective events, as well as original archival research, this chapter shows how the loyalist countermobilization activated mechanisms of object shift and tactical codependency that facilitated the emergence of radicalization in Northern Ireland.

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Non-State Violent Actors and Social Movement Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-190-2

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Book part
Publication date: 19 September 2012

Larry W. Isaac, Daniel B. Cornfield, Dennis C. Dickerson, James M. Lawson and Jonathan S. Coley

While it is generally well known that nonviolent collective action was widely deployed in the US southern civil rights movement, there is still much that we do not know…

Abstract

While it is generally well known that nonviolent collective action was widely deployed in the US southern civil rights movement, there is still much that we do not know about how that came to be. Drawing on primary data that consist of detailed semistructured interviews with members of the Nashville nonviolent movement during the late 1950s and 1960s, we contribute unique insights about how the nonviolent repertoire was diffused into one movement current that became integral to moving the wider southern movement. Innovating with the concept of serially linked movement schools – locations where the deeply intense work took place, the didactic and dialogical labor of analyzing, experimenting, creatively translating, and resocializing human agents in preparation for dangerous performance – we follow the biographical paths of carriers of the nonviolent Gandhian repertoire as it was learned, debated, transformed, and carried from India to the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR) and Howard University to Nashville (TN) and then into multiple movement campaigns across the South. Members of the Nashville movement core cadre – products of the Nashville movement workshop schools – were especially important because they served as bridging leaders by serially linking schools and collective action campaigns. In this way, they played critical roles in bridging structural holes (places where the movement had yet to be successfully established) and were central to diffusing the movement throughout the South. Our theoretical and empirical approach contributes to the development of the dialogical perspective on movement diffusion generally and to knowledge about how the nonviolent repertoire became integral to the US civil rights movement in particular.

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Nonviolent Conflict and Civil Resistance
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-346-9

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Book part
Publication date: 30 June 2017

Cyril Ghosh

In this chapter, I suggest that Connecticut’s and other states’ recent discontinuation of civil unions in the name of marriage “equality” marginalizes and demeans marriage…

Abstract

In this chapter, I suggest that Connecticut’s and other states’ recent discontinuation of civil unions in the name of marriage “equality” marginalizes and demeans marriage – rejecting people who may nonetheless wish to codify their intimate partnerships – for purposes of legal “incidents,” including rights and privileges, like hospital visitation rights, testimonial privilege, inheritance rights, etc. In doing so, I also call for a rejuvenation of the practice of granting civil union licenses in these states.

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Studies in Law, Politics, and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-811-6

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Book part
Publication date: 16 August 2016

Tine Destrooper

This article examines the evolution and the nature of indigenous women’s rights activism in post-conflict Guatemala. I analyze the work of the Organización de Mujeres

Abstract

This article examines the evolution and the nature of indigenous women’s rights activism in post-conflict Guatemala. I analyze the work of the Organización de Mujeres Mayas de Kaqla, which has developed a type of women’s rights activism that is firmly rooted in Mayan cosmovisión and in women’s direct experiences. Building on their experience in the revolutionary movements of the war period the women of Kaqla seek to localize the allegedly universal discourse of women’s rights and to use it as a resource for change. I apply the perspectives of social movement spillover and of localizing human rights respectively to structure the findings, and argue that both perspectives can be insightful in understanding certain dimensions of this multi-faceted kind of activism, but that there are certain dynamics which these perspectives fail to grasp. I ask how the case of Kaqla can enrich both our understanding of how social movements can adapt to changing environments, and of how transnational discourses can become localized. The analysis also highlights the North-South power dynamic and suggests that processes of discursive adaptation are not fundamentally open.

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Narratives of Identity in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-078-7

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Book part
Publication date: 7 November 2018

Daniel B. Cornfield, Jonathan S. Coley, Larry W. Isaac and Dennis C. Dickerson

As a site of contestation among job seekers, workers, and managers, the bureaucratic workplace both reproduces and erodes occupational race segregation and racial status…

Abstract

As a site of contestation among job seekers, workers, and managers, the bureaucratic workplace both reproduces and erodes occupational race segregation and racial status hierarchies. Much sociological research has examined the reproduction of racial inequality at work; however, little research has examined how desegregationist forces, including civil rights movement values, enter and permeate bureaucratic workplaces into the broader polity. Our purpose in this chapter is to introduce and typologize what we refer to as “occupational activism,” defined as socially transformative individual and collective action that is conducted and realized through an occupational role or occupational community. We empirically induce and present a typology from our study of the half-century-long, post-mobilization occupational careers of over 60 veterans of the nonviolent Nashville civil rights movement of the early 1960s. The fourfold typology of occupational activism is framed in the “new” sociology of work, which emphasizes the role of worker agency and activism in determining worker life chances, and in the “varieties of activism” perspective, which treats the typology as a coherent regime of activist roles in the dialogical diffusion of civil rights movement values into, within, and out of workplaces. We conclude with a research agenda on how bureaucratic workplaces nurture and stymie occupational activism as a racially desegregationist force at work and in the broader polity.

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Race, Identity and Work
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-501-6

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