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Constructing a theory of the legitimacy of groups, especially groups that mobilize the resources of their own members and provide pure or impure public goods such as…
Constructing a theory of the legitimacy of groups, especially groups that mobilize the resources of their own members and provide pure or impure public goods such as collective action, raises some questions not encountered by theories of the legitimacy of acts, persons, or positions. Among these are: First, groups are typically nested in other groups. Groups nested in other groups may differ from each other both in their situations of action and in the larger social framework of norms, values, beliefs, practices, and procedures that guide action in them; or, in other words, in the two chief sources of their legitimacy. Does this pose a problem for the legitimacy of groups? If it does, with what consequences and under what conditions? Second, groups that mobilize the resources of their members for the purpose of providing them with pure or impure public goods have problems of both agency and collective action. Problems of agency and collective action make compliance with the claims made by the group on the resources of its members problematic. Even those willing to comply with them may be deterred by fear of the opportunism of others. Under what conditions do those who would be willing to comply were it not for fear of opportunism by others actually comply? Third, legitimacy is in some sense a resource. It is a characteristic instrumental to the mobilization of resources by a group. But is it a resource like any other? Absent land, labor, capital, technology or organization, does it matter how much legitimacy a group has? If not, what is the relation between legitimacy and resources?
Environmental justice activism is increasingly globalized, multi-faceted and multi-scaled (Bickerstaff & Agyeman, 2009; Walker, 2009a, 2009b). The existence or perception of injustice triggers the development of social activism in increasingly diverse contexts. The present contribution seeks to assess the explanatory value of resources in understanding activism (Freeman, 1979). In place of justice, the under-studied social movement theory of resource mobilization is explored as a complementary and partly oppositional account of justice activism. The highly controversial anti-GMO movement in France is selected as an invigorating context for evaluating activism. The perceived injustice of lifting restrictions on the importation of GM maize into France inspired the mobilization of a nationwide movement. In sharp contrast to existing literature, ideology is considered as a resource that effectively promotes or hinders social activism. Significant conclusions are developed for environmental justice activism research around emphasizing instability, heterogeneity, cultural sensitivity and above all, the limitations of agency-centric arguments.
Purpose – In this paper, we contribute to the study of conservative, reactive mobilization through a study of the ex-gay movement in the United States.…
Purpose – In this paper, we contribute to the study of conservative, reactive mobilization through a study of the ex-gay movement in the United States.
Design/methodology/approach – Using state-level event history analyses over 25 years, we examine the role of threat, resources, and political opportunity in the formation of the first ex-gay organization in each state.
Findings – Our results demonstrate the importance of threat, particularly perceived challenges to traditional definitions of morality, in the formation of ex-gay groups. We find little support for either resource mobilization or political opportunity.
Research limitations/implications – This study indicates a need for further research on sociocultural threat and the ex-gay movement.
Originality/value – It expands scholarship on countermovement emergence, conservative and reactive countermovements, and the role of threat (especially sociocultural threat) in movements.
A neglected area of research in ODC is the turnaround of poorly performing firms such as those under bankruptcy protection. We researched 142 companies that attempted…
A neglected area of research in ODC is the turnaround of poorly performing firms such as those under bankruptcy protection. We researched 142 companies that attempted reorganization under bankruptcy protection between 1983 and 2003. Firms deployed one or more of four distinct strategies to turnaround: rationalizing existing resources, developing existing resources, generating new resources, and investing in future resources. Firms that generated new resources, and developed and rationalized existing resources, had the highest probability of emergence. Interestingly firms that sustained their turnaround post-emergence invested in future resources in addition to generating, developing, and rationalizing resources. Implications for ODC are discussed.
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…
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.
How can we account for patterns of mobilization undertaken by ethnic movements? What leads ethnic collectives to shift between mobilization strategies? Addressing the…
How can we account for patterns of mobilization undertaken by ethnic movements? What leads ethnic collectives to shift between mobilization strategies? Addressing the general lack of attention in the ethnic conflict literature to the diverse political strategies employed by ethnic minorities – particularly those in democratic and semi-democratic contexts, this chapter accounts for mobilization as developing along an institutional spectrum of ethnic contention. I argue that the internal dynamics of ethnic movements shape patterns of mobilization. Utilizing literature from new institutionalism and employing the approach advanced by the study of contentious politics, ethnic movements are theorized as developing through the interplay of three causal mechanisms, which combine to form processes of institutionalization and deinstitutionalization. The process of deinstitutionalization is explored through the case of the mobilization of the Palestinian citizens of Israel, tracing the development of the three causal mechanisms and their influence on the collective’s mobilization pattern. The chapter concludes by considering the range of movements that can be explored along the institutional spectrum.
In this paper, we draw from our own empirical data on worker organizing and identify important concepts that bridge social movement (SM) and industrial relations (IR…
In this paper, we draw from our own empirical data on worker organizing and identify important concepts that bridge social movement (SM) and industrial relations (IR) theory. In a context of traditional union decline and a surge of alternative types of worker mobilization, we apply SM and IR concepts related to the mobilizing structures and culture to cases of labor organizing via worker centers and community–labor alliances in the United States and China. From an analytical perspective, we argue that the field of SMs and IR can both benefit from this type of cross-discipline theorization.
A functionalist framework is used to synthesize well‐known ideas about societal integration and, conversely, disintegration. If the underlying Darwinian metaphor in…
A functionalist framework is used to synthesize well‐known ideas about societal integration and, conversely, disintegration. If the underlying Darwinian metaphor in functional analysis is retained, and supplemented by dialectical metaphors, then functional theorizing can insightfully address the forces of societal disintegration. The emerging theory revolves around, on the structural side, the dynamics of segmentation, differentiation, interdependence and exchange, structural overlap, structural embeddedness, mobility, segregation, and domination whereas on the cultural side, the theory emphasizes the dynamics inhering in systems of evaluational, regulatory, and legitimating symbols as well as generalized symbolic media.