1st Edition

Law and Social Movements

Edited By

Michael McCann

ISBN 9780754624974
Published May 24, 2006 by Routledge
662 Pages

USD $400.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

The work of both socio-legal scholars and specialists working in social movements research continues to contribute to our understanding of how law relates to and informs the politics of social movements. In the 1990s, an important line of new research, most of it initiated by those working in the law and society tradition, began to bridge the gaps between these two areas of scholarship. This work includes new approaches to group ’legal mobilization’ politics; analysis of the judicial impact on social reform struggles; studies of individual legal mobilization in civil disputing and an almost entirely new area of research in ’cause lawyering’. It brings together the best of this research introduced by a detailed essay by the editor.

Table of Contents

Contents: Series preface; Introduction. Part I Analytical Frameworks and Methodological Principles: Legal mobilization and social movements: notes on theory and its applications, Michael W. McCann; Positivism, interpretivism, and the study of the law, Gerald N. Rosenberg; Causal versus constitutive explanations (or on the difficulty of being so positive...) Michael McCann. Part II Legal Framing and Claiming by Social Movements: Right, rage and remedy: forms of law in political discourse, John Brigham; The structural context of novel rights claims: southern civil rights organizing 1961-1966, Francesca Polletta; Human rights in Israel/Palestine: the history and politics of a movement, Lisa Hajjar; So help me God: a comparative study of religious interest group litigation, Jayanth K. Krishnan and Kevin R. den Dulk; The ADA on the road: disability rights in Germany, Katharina C. Heyer ; Rights as excess: understanding the politics of special rights, Jonathan Goldberg Hiller and Neal Milner. Part III Legal Leveraging Power: Contestation, Containment, Cooptation: Law as a weapon in social conflict, Austin T. Turk; Legal mobilization as a social movement tactic: the struggle for equal employment opportunity, Paul Burstein; Comparing women's rights litigation in the Netherlands and the United states, Susan M. Olson; Long-term strategies in Japanese environmental litigation, Robert L. Kidder and Setsuo Miyazawa; Fufubessi movement in Japan: thinking about women's resistance and subjectivity, Ki-young Shin; Law and the protection of cultural communities: the case of native American fishing rights, Michael R. Anderson; Legal control of the southern civil rights movement, Steve E. Barkan; Social movements, law and society: the institutionalization of the environmental law movement, Cary Coglianese. Part IV Law, Change, and Hegemony: Assessing Legal Mobilization Politics: Rights and social movements: counter-hegemonic strategies, Alan Hunt; Race reform and retrenchment: transformation and legitimation in antidiscrimination law, Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw; Family, law and sexuality: feminist engagements, Susan B. Boyd; Postmodernism, protest, and the new social movements, Joel F. Handler; International law and social movements: challenges of theorizing resistance, Balakrishnan Rajagopal; Name index.

View More



Michael McCann is Gordon Hirabayashi Professor for the Advancement of Citizenship at the University of Washington, Seattle, USA. A former chair of the Political Science Department, he is the Founding Director of the Comparative Law and Society Studies (CLASS) Center as well as Director of the recently reconstructed undergraduate Law, Societies, and Justice program. McCann has written several books, and is presently working on several new projects that analyze how the saturation of mass culture with particular narratives about law undercuts the progressive, democratic possibilities of rights-based legal mobilization politics.


'...a worthy contribution, both to the study of law and social movements specifically and to the study of law and society generally.' The Law and Politics Book Review 'The real value of this collection lies in bringing diverse sources together in a single convenient volume and thus allowing the debate over the nature and effectiveness of "legal mobilization" to flourish.' British Journal of Criminology