Social Movements and Social Change

Social Movements and Social Change

Social Movements and Social Change This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2011 Political Uprising in Cairo, Egypt

Are you ready for the Tahrir moment? On September 17, 2011 thousands of citizens went to wall street to protest and occupied Zuccotti park. Why were people out? What were some of the

reasons? This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY Understanding Collective behavior Collective behavior is voluntary, often spontaneous activity that is engaged in by a large number of people and typically violates

dominant-group norms and values. Collective behavior can take various forms, including crowds, mobs, riots, panics, fads, fashions, and public opinion. Example - Flash mobs https://wonderopolis.org/wonder/what-is-a-flash-mob

Collective Behavior Noninstitutionalized activity in which several or many voluntary engage This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY

Forms of Collective Behavior Three primary forms of collective behavior are: 1. Crowd, 2. Mass, 3. Public Crowd large number of people in close proximity is a crowd

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA Turner and Killian 4 types of crowd Casual crowds Same place, same time (Being in the mall) Conventional crowds ( Attending church) - attending regular event Expressive crowds come together to express emotions (funeral) Acting crowds focused on specific goal or action (womens march) Other ways to identify collective

groups 1. Mass large number of people united by common interest. They may or may not in close proximity. Example Farmville 2. Public Unorganized and relatively diffused group that shares same ideas. Example- members of tea party political group Group Think A kind of faulty thinking on the part of highly cohesive groups in which the critical scrutiny that should be devoted to the issues at

hand is subverted by social pressures to reach consensus Basically, groups try to agree with one another, and they can ignore problems with their plans to do so Enron is a tragic modern day example Collective Behavior Theories Focus of early theorist was on irrationality of collective behavior (crowds) Emergent theory Turner and Killian argue that the norms that ultimately govern a situation

may not be initially apparent to the participants. Instead, norms emerge through a process of social interaction in which people look to others for cues and signs indicating various possibilities of what they might expect. Emergent norm theory explains that collective behavior has a long history of turning violent, such as in the cases of mobs and riots. o Being in new situation o Norms are unclear o Develop new norms of behavior

o New norms are not irrational, but acceptable in evolving situation This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY Norms shift quickly in response to changing external factors This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

Value added Theory Neil Smelser Smelser wrote that social movements and other collective behavior occur if and only if several conditions are present. The first condition is structural conduciveness (awareness + ability to gather) One of these conditions is structural strain, which refers to problems in society that cause people to be angry and frustrated. Without such structural strain, people would not have any reason to protest, and social movements do not arise.

Another condition is generalized beliefs, which are peoples reasons for why conditions are so bad and their solutions to improve them problem and cause is clearly identified If people decide that the conditions they dislike are their own fault, they will decide not to protest Similarly, if they decide that protest will not improve these conditions, they again will not protest. A third condition is the existence of precipitating factors, or sudden events that ignite collective behavior

The fifth condition is mobilization for action leaders direct crowd to action Final condition Social control Force may be applied by police, courts, media. Social movent may survive or fail. Protest in Fergusson This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

Clark McPhail identified various circumstances of convergent and collective behavior (McPhail 1991). Type of crowd Convergence clusters Convergent orientation Collective vocalization Collective verbalization Collective gesticulation

Collective manipulation Collective locomotion Description Family and friends who travel together Group all facing the same direction Sounds or noises made collectively Collective and simultaneous

participation in a speech or song Body parts forming symbols Objects collectively moved around The direction and rate of movement to the event Example Carpooling parents take several children to the movies

A semi-circle around a stage Screams on a roller coaster Pledge of Allegiance in the school classroom The YMCA dance Holding signs at a protest rally Children running to an ice cream truck

Social movements A social movement may be defined as an organized effort by a large number of people to bring about or impede social, political, economic, or cultural change. This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA Types of Social Movements

Stages of Social movements Theoretical Perspective on Social Movements Most theories of social movements are called collective action theories, indicating the purposeful nature of this form of collective

behavior. The following three theories are but a few of the many classic and modern theories developed by social scientists. 1. Resource mobilization 2. Frame Analysis 3. New social movement theory Resource mobilization theory The success of a movement will depend on the ability of leaders to acquire

resources (time and money) and mobilize people Example Civil Rights movement Conducive condition Rosa Parkes's refusal Montgomery bus boycott Charismatic leader Support from other civil rights groups Frame Analysis

Snow and Benford (1988) say that frame alignment is an important element in social mobilization or movement. 1. Diagnostic Framing state problem in clear frame. We are right, they are wrong. Only we can fix it. 2. Prognostic Framing offers solutions and how it will be implemented 3. Motivational Framing action oriented what must be done once you agree with diagnostic frame.

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