Insiders and Outsiders: Global Social Movements, Party Politics, and Democracy in Europe and North America

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2007-11-26

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Abstract

This dissertation explores several dynamics in insider and outsider activism in the anti-war movement: insider-outsider cooperation and conflict in protest coalitions; transnational protest events' success in uniting insiders and outsiders; and coupling of insider and outsider tactics such as protesting and voting. Insider-outsider cooperation in protest coalitions helps to facilitate successful protest events involving rainbow coalitions of insiders and outsiders. Such events catalyze future insider-outsider cooperation, illustrate which parties are movement allies, educate parties about protesters' concerns, educate protesters about coupling insider and outsider tactics, and may help remobilize activists as voters in subsequent elections.

Key rival arguments that are investigated are whether grievances opposing U.S. unilateralism in Iraq, on which there was a strong issue consensus, are as important as Tarrow's politically opportune domestic targets, such as a government joining the "Coalition of the Willing," in accounting for dynamics in insider and outsider activism. Cross-national surveys of protesters are paired with content analysis of news coverage of transnational anti-war protest events and with elite interviews of activists.

While domestic targets appear to exert some centripetal forces facilitating cooperation between insiders and outsiders, issue consensus or issue discord on grievances can create either centripetal forces that unite or centrifugal forces that unleash conflict. Grievances have the power to unite or to divide us, and whether they do depends on the issue consensus in the movement and the public about them. Grievances with issue consensus unite us, exerting centripetal forces on insider and outsider activism, whereas grievances with issue discord divide us, wielding centrifugal forces on insiders and outsiders.

Opposing U.S. unilateralism in Iraq without the United Nations, on which there is issue consensus, brings together insiders and outsiders in protest coalitions, at protest events, and in protesters' tactical choices, and thus has the potential to remobilize protesters as voters. Conversely, linking opposition to war in Iraq with other grievances on which there is discord, such as opposition to war in all cases, opposition to globalization, and support of Palestine, divides insiders and outsiders in protest coalitions and at protest events and may lead protesters to expand their globalized protest involvement.

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