Citizenship Rights and Social Movements: A Comparative and Statistical Analysis

By Joe Foweraker; Todd Landman | Go to book overview

5
The Contours of Social Movements

The previous chapter described the trends in the measures and indicators of citizenship rights in the four cases. This chapter does the same for social movement activity. Like citizenship rights, there are no comprehensive studies of social movement activity, and so this chapter pieces together primary and secondary source material on social movements to provide a picture of waves of protest. The chapter is organized into three sections. The first section describes both labour and other social movement events, drawn from the coding protocol, the ILO, and the secondary literature. Using these same sources the second section shows the trends in labour and other social movement demands over time. Finally, the third section describes three further aspects of social movement activity--sectors, participants, and forms of action--which serve to complement the events and demands trends described in the first two sections.


Events

The first set of figures in this section (5.1.1-5.1.4) draws on the coding protocol (cf. Chapter 3) to show the trajectory of social movement activity (SMA). The data represents the events that have received most attention in the literature and composes a time-series measure of the waves of mobilization in the four cases. The second set of figures (5.2.1-5.2.4) describes the two most useful measures of labour movement activity. The strike rate (SR) is simply the number of strikes, and the strike volume (SV) the total number of workers involved in all strikes, in any given year.1 Since the strike rate is the most salient measure of labour activity and can be compared directly to social movement activity, it is central to the statistical analysis in Chapters 6 and 7. Although the strike volume provides a less comparable measure (since volume

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1
A third measure, the strike size, is derived by dividing the volume by the rate.

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