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This paper analyzes the relationship between the Chilean student movement and state force action during the period 2000–2012, placing specific attention on three waves of…
This paper analyzes the relationship between the Chilean student movement and state force action during the period 2000–2012, placing specific attention on three waves of student contention that took place at the turn of the century. During the decade under study, the Chilean students became more contentious, they broadened their demands beyond specific grievances to encompass a critique to the education system as a whole, their alliance system grew (gaining from these denser networks of collaboration more resources to mobilize), and they managed to win public opinion on their side. However, the relationship with state forces has not been static across time, and both students and state forces have experienced changes in how they interact with each other. The results of this paper are based on a mixed method approach that drew on a quantitative database of student contention in Chile (n = 491 student events) and 15 in-depth interviews with leader activists from the most salient recent Chilean student movements of three periods under study, in addition to some key informants. The findings confirm that when student protests target the government, when they use disruptive strategies that affect the status-quo, and when they mobilize alongside other challenging actors, they are more likely to be met with direct repression by authorities. The research shows that there is a “dialect of repression” at play by which state forces' direct repression of protest can be two-fold: on the one hand, it gives students visibility in the public opinion, but on the other, it can be negative for ushering support if the media and authorities are successful in portraying them as violent or a threat to public order. In this sense, the figure of the “encapuchado,” students who disguise their identity and purposefully seek confrontation with authorities during mobilizations is problematized by the movement itself. How to win public opinion and use that visibility in their favor is related to decision-making mechanisms that the movement puts at play but also to the calculations done on the part of the government and security forces about the leverage of the movement.
Scholarship on the effects of various kinds of state repression (e.g., counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, protest policing) on subsequent dissent has produced a body of…
Scholarship on the effects of various kinds of state repression (e.g., counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, protest policing) on subsequent dissent has produced a body of contradictory findings. In an attempt to better understand the effects of one form of state repression – protest policing – on one form of dissent – public protest – this paper examines the effects of various policing strategies used at protest events on subsequent protest levels in the United States between 1960 and 1990. Theoretically, we argue the effects of repression cannot be broadly theorized but instead need to be hypothesized at the level of particular police strategies and actions. We theorize and empirically examine the impacts of five police strategies, while also improving on prior analyses by producing a comprehensive model that examines lagged and nonlinear effects and examines the effects across the entire social movement sector, as well as across two specific movement industries. Results (1) confirm that not all police strategies have the same effects; (2) show that policing strategies tend to have predominately linear effects; (3) show that police actions have their strongest effects in the very short term, with few effects detectable after a few weeks; and (4) point to interesting differences in the effects of policing strategies on subsequent protest across different social movements.
Using socio-legal research on arrests and the criminal justice system, this paper contests the implicit argument in recent research on repression that arrests are “softer”…
Using socio-legal research on arrests and the criminal justice system, this paper contests the implicit argument in recent research on repression that arrests are “softer” than police violence. Specifically, the paper explores the physical conditions of arrest and detention, and the extent to which arrests initiate costly interactions with the legal system that punish defendants before they are even tried (or even if charges are later dropped). Using data on arrests and police practices from mine strikes in Arizona from the early 1980s and data on arrests and police practices during urban riots in the 1960s, the paper: (1) discusses the physical realities of arrest and detention; (2) outlines the array of costs that arrests impose on protesters; (3) discusses the implications of biased policing on that set of costs; and (4) examines the costs associated with mass arrests. The paper concludes this empirical analysis by questioning the commensurability of arrests with other forms of police action, including violence, against protesters.
How are social groups unmade? Current theories identify the symbolic power of the state as a primary factor in the creation of social groups. Drawing on Gramsci's The…
How are social groups unmade? Current theories identify the symbolic power of the state as a primary factor in the creation of social groups. Drawing on Gramsci's The Southern Question, this chapter extends state-centered theories by exploring policies that are critical but under-theorized factors in group formation. These include the concession of material benefits as well as the use of coercive means. Further, while current theories focus on how social groups are made, a Gramscian perspective draws attention to how the state intervenes to prevent or neutralize group-making projects from below. This chapter explores a case of a decrease in national group solidarity. Specifically, this study explains how in the 1990s the Israeli state weakened national group formation among Palestinians by adopting two spatially distinct but coordinated strategies. First, the rearrangement of the military occupation of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank through the establishment of an authority of self-rule (the Palestinian Authority) demobilized and divided Palestinian residents of the Occupied Territories, especially along class-cum-moral lines. Second, state practices and discourses centered on citizenship rights shifted the center of political activism among Palestinian citizens of Israel toward citizenship issues. I argue that these two routes, which I call the indirect rule route and the civil society route, were complementary components of a broader attempt to neutralize Palestinian collective mobilization around nationhood. Despite recent changes and contestations, these two strategies of rule continue to affect group formation and to create distinct experiences of politics among Palestinians under Israeli rule. Analysis of the Palestinian–Israeli case shows that the state can unmake groups through the distribution of interrelated policies that are specific to certain categories of people and places. Understanding the conditions under which certain policies of inclusion or exclusion affect group formation requires going beyond the analytic primacy currently given to the symbolic power of the state.
In this chapter, I focus on stigmatization exercised and experienced by local residents, comparing two socially-diverse areas in very different contexts: the Cabrini…
In this chapter, I focus on stigmatization exercised and experienced by local residents, comparing two socially-diverse areas in very different contexts: the Cabrini Green-Near North area in Chicago and the La Loma-La Florida area in Santiago de Chile.
Data for this study were drawn from 1 year of qualitative research, using interviews with residents and institutional actors, field notes from observation sessions of several inter-group spaces, and “spatial inventories” in which I located the traces of the symbolic presence of each group.
Despite contextual differences of type of social differentiation, type of social mix, type of housing tenure for the poor, and public visibility, I argue that there are important common problems: first, symbolic differences are stressed by identity changes; second, distrust against “the other” is spatially crystallized in any type and scale of social housing; third, stigmatization changes in form and scale; and fourth, there are persisting prejudiced depictions and patterns of avoidance.
Socially-mixed neighborhoods, as areas where at least two different social groups live in proximity, offer an interesting context for observing territorial stigmatization. They are strange creatures of urban development, due to the powerful symbolism of desegregation in contexts of growing inequalities.
The chapter contributes to a cross-national perspective with a comparison of global-north and global-south cities. And it also springs from a study of socially-mixed areas, in which the debate on concentrated/deconcentrated poverty is central, and in which the problem of “clearing places” appears in both material (e.g., displacement) and symbolic (e.g., stigmatization) terms.
Much scholarship has looked at how radical politics and its symbolism are framed and distorted by the mass media, while less attention has been devoted to how the symbolic…
Much scholarship has looked at how radical politics and its symbolism are framed and distorted by the mass media, while less attention has been devoted to how the symbolic imagery of violence and death is used in activists’ self-representations. This chapter provides one such alternative angle by probing how “visual protest materials” are creatively used in activists’ own videos to pass on stories of communion and contestation.It interrogates how activist video practices mirror the continuum between physical places and mediated spaces in political activism by analyzing a thread of videos circulating on YouTube that commemorate people who have died in connection with three protest events across Europe, putting on display the “spectacles of death” punctuating each of these events. The analysis draws on social semiotics, in particular the work of Barthes (1981) and Zelizer (2010), to examine how death is used as a visual trope to signify the ultimate prize of taking to the streets. This chapter suggests how agency and meaning travel back and forth between offline and online spaces of activism. Engaging with some implications of this interplay, the chapter argues that, in the quest to document truth and induce realism and immediacy, tensions between fact and fiction emerge in the creative appropriation and remixing of images. Finally, it demonstrates how the cityscape is recruited to document and dramatize the spectacle of death as part of a larger struggle for semiotic resources within the protest space and over media representations of social movements more generally.
This paper aims to explore the construction of social imaginaries of fear by the Chilean press regarding student violence during the 1968 university reforming process…
This paper aims to explore the construction of social imaginaries of fear by the Chilean press regarding student violence during the 1968 university reforming process. Using an approach inspired by the history of emotions, the primary purpose is to analyze the discourse of two relevant conservative newspapers with national circulation about students' mobilization.
The research rests on the analysis of content in the discourse of the two more representative right-wing Chilean newspapers (El Mercurio and El Diario Ilustrado). Founded in the early years of the 20th century, both had national circulations and were a part of a tradition in the history of the Chilean 20th-century national press. Through the analysis of a selection of editorials and news regarding students' mobilization during 1968, with a focus on the experience of the most prominent institution (Universidad de Chile), this research highlights similarities and differences in the ways that both media endeavoured to elaborate social imaginaries of menace and fear regarding student movements.
Through the study of the discourse of traditional newspapers, it is possible to identify critical issues concerning the university student movements' purposes to implement breaking (and occasionally violent) methods to carry out the reforms that they promoted, according to the right-wing press. Against this backdrop, the different importance of an anti-communist component is discernible, typical of the Cold War period, in the (political and emotional) arguments of the newspapers under analysis.
This article proposes an interpretation that intertwines a local phenomenon (the reformist movement of the University of Chile) with a global one (the May student revolution of 1968). It also establishes a novel approach by linking, through its approach, yet traditional concepts of social and cultural analysis (the idea of social imaginaries) with a new emphasis on social science and humanities (emotional dimensions).
The purpose of this paper is to expound on the idea that informal economy is a “conforming” situation, based on the informal sale of medicines in Lomé.
The purpose of this paper is to expound on the idea that informal economy is a “conforming” situation, based on the informal sale of medicines in Lomé.
The paper takes the form of a case study based on interviews.
The case makes it possible to understand that the quality‐price ratio mainly explains the existing practices, inducing an immediate satisfaction of the purchasers. Indeed, the average income in developing countries is very low and consumers are inclined to buy these products because of their low prices (i.e. “Bottom of the Pyramid” issues – BOP).
To say that the informal economy “conforms to the rules” is to assert its institutional dimension and suggest it should be considered within the categories of institutionalization. It is also a scathing criticism of the logic of international organizations and CSR, one that is unlikely to crop up in the so‐called audited reports.
Informal economy gives rise to innovations and the development of a kind of entrepreneurship dissimilar to that of business schools and the very honorable “social entrepreneurs”. Concepts such as leadership, motivation, negotiation power, organizational learning, strategy, competitive advantage, diversity and the like have coherent materializations, albeit structurally different in origin from the received wisdom about them.
The argument of this research is based on the observation that informal economy is a situation just as “conforming” as the formal economy. It should be mentioned that in economics, grassroots collective and non‐institutionalized action is referred to as “informal economy”. It is regarded as inseparable from the formal economy – as evidenced in the case of Togo's reform of public health policy following the Bamako Initiative and its consequences as studied in this paper – but receives less attention despite numerous studies.
This paper presents a real field study. The interviews were carried out near all the categories of actors implied in the drugs sales: wholesalers and retailers and customers (primary wholesalers, local dealers, retailers, patients).
Scholarship on the state control of social movements has predominately focused on overt repression, resulting in comparatively less attention to more covert forms of…
Scholarship on the state control of social movements has predominately focused on overt repression, resulting in comparatively less attention to more covert forms of control. Researchers have suggested that government surveillance of social movement organizations (SMOs) has become increasingly widespread and routinized in the post-September 11, 2001 era, but this hypothesis has remained untested. Since contemporary surveillance is grounded in a logic of information gathering that has diffused across law enforcement agencies since the September 11 attacks, government actors now cast a wide net and monitor a large variety of groups. This study shows that a result, traditional factors predicting surveillance, such as contentious behavior, have less explanatory power. Using a database of 409 SMOs active in Philadelphia between January 1996 and October 2009, the research asked who and why particular groups are monitored by the Pennsylvania Office of Homeland Security (PA-OHS) between November 2009 and September 2010. Bayesian logistic regression analysis is used to examine the variables predicting surveillance. Findings show that 23% of the SMOs in the sample were targets of surveillance. Organizational ideology was the strongest predictor and there was little evidence that history of contentious protests or previous conflict with the police influenced coming under surveillance. However, groups with less visibility in traditional media sources were more likely to be monitored.