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SOCI 386 (9)

jan 28th.docx

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Sociology (Arts)
Course Code
SOCI 386
Marcos Ancelovici

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Jan 28 th Political Process Theory (Tilly/Tarrow/McAdam) - Focuses on how movements operate over time - SMs as just another way of engaging in politics - Stress indigeneous resources of aggreived groups (resources brought by actors at the grassroots level) - Mobilization builds on preexisting networks and organizations as well as previous waves of protest - Focuses on political institutional environment of SMs- i.e. when government opposes labour, the cost of collective action is higher - Structure of polity will be main factor explaining emergence and decline of SMs - Core concept: political opportunity structure (POS) Political Opportunity Structure (POS) - Conditions that favour and constrain contentious collective action - Definitions: consistent but not necessarily formal or permanent- dimensions of political environment that provide incentives for collective action by affecting people’s expectations for success or failure - POS as a curvilinear phenomenon- if government is very open, there is no need to engage in disruptive tactics because the government is usually willing to sit at the table and negotiate- if it is too closed, people won’t engage in disruptive tactics because they’d get killed Static dimension: relatively stable- explains tactics 1) State strength (autonomy with respect to interest groups) 2) State strategy (negotiation vs exclusion) 3) Social cleavages (class cleavage) Dynamic dimension- explains emergence and decline of SMs 1) Opening/closure of the polity 2) Alignments 3) Elite cohesion 4) Allies 5) State behaviour 6) Threats (i.e. people joining tuition protests b/c of Bill 78, which threatened freedom of association) Framing- allows culture to enter into picture - Goffman, David Snow - How to turn passivity into action - Diagnosis- blame attribution, Prognosis- solution, Motivation- source of anger - Symbolic manipulation (i.e. pro-life vs pro-choice) - Socialization and discursive repertoire (i.e. in French repertoire, you don’t use the word “race” or you’re racist, in US it is used all the time) - Frame alignment- when frame used by group and frame accepted by society are the same, it is more likely mobilization will occur - Frame extension- i.e. redefining private as political, including more groups in the movement - Frame bridging-2 existing frames, then you connect them - Framing and coalition building - Movement specific frames and master frames (rights frame was specific to civil rights movement, then became a master frame used by a lot of movements) How and when do people manage to act collectively? - Preexisting organizations and networks (framing- grievances, identity, and networks) - Resources - Shift in the POS Cycles of Protest (Tarrow) - Temporality of protest - Expanding opportunities - Influence of movements on one another and on the POS - Early risers/initiator movements- pay a higher cost and provide a toolkit for later protests - Intensification and innovation - Transformation/expansion of the repertoire of action - Expansion of repertoire leads to diffusion of repertoire - At the end of the cycle of protest, there is a decline- due to exhaustion or cooptation, or certain actors engaging in violent protest thereby raising the cost of collective action for the group as a whole Critique of PPT - Explains variation in space and time and talks about when and how SMs occur, but not why - Assumes movements always target the state and are contained within its natural borders - Only really takes into account the US experience- may not be universal, may only work in liberal democracies or US - How do we measure the level of the opening and the change in expectations of actors? - POS identified after the fact and potentially tautological (may confuse cause and effect) - Too encompassing or too narrow - Contradictory ecidence that could refute their ideas - View institutions as mere arenas in which actors compete, when they provide openings and closings (a lot of institutions actually shape what people think) SMs and the Media - The powerful often make decisions in private and they don’t want the media to
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