Resisting the Backlash : Street Protest in Italy book cover
1st Edition

Resisting the Backlash
Street Protest in Italy

ISBN 9781032180519
Published May 6, 2022 by Routledge
178 Pages 10 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Drawing interview material, together with extensive data from the authors’ original social movement database, this book examines the development of social movements in resistance to perceived political "regression" and a growing right-wing backlash. With a focus on Italy and the reaction to increasing inequalities and welfare state retrenchment policies, it examines opposition to the government and state authorities on a number of issues. Triangulating different types of data, it sheds light on the ability of citizens to organise in the streets and addresses crucial matters in social movement research, including the significance to political mobilization of grievances, class, gender and generational differences, as well as considering the network dynamics of micro-mobilization, visions of Europe, and the role of interactions with major political institutions. As such, it will appeal to scholars of sociology and politics with interests in social movements and political mobilization.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Resisting the backlash in the streets: An introduction

Chapter 2: Bringing grievances back in? Socio-economic inequalities and the political participation of protesters

Chapter 3: Generations and gender in the mobilisation against the backlash

Chapter 4: The Dynamics of micro-mobilisation

Chapter 5: Social movements and institutional politics

Chapter 6: Politicising Europe in the streets

Chapter 7: Conclusion

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Donatella della Porta is Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences and Director of the Centre for Social Movements Studies at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Italy. Her recent books include How Social Movements Can Save Democracy: Democratic Innovations from Below; Social Movements: An Introduction; Discursive Turns and Critical Junctures: Debating Citizenship after the Charlie Hebdo Attacks; and Where Did the Revolution Go? Contentious Politics and the Quality of Democracy.

Niccolò Bertuzzi is Postdoctoral Researcher in the School of International Studies at the University of Trento, Italy.

Daniela Chironi is Research Fellow in the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Italy.

Chiara Milan is Research Fellow in the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Italy.

Martín Portos is CONEX-Plus Marie Curie Fellow in the Department of Social Sciences at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain. He is the author of Grievances and Public Protest: Political Mobilisation in Spain in the Age of Austerity.

Lorenzo Zamponi is Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Italy.


‘Drawing on a wealth of individual-level data collected over the years, this volume examines the determinants of participation in street protests for social justice and democracy in a period of political and cultural backlash. While focused on Italy, the book offers much broader insights into the dynamics of micro-mobilization in protest activities.’ - Marco Giugni, University of Geneva

‘This truly insightful analysis tells us everything we might wish to know about contemporary left-wing protesters who are responding to a right-wing backlash in Italy. If you wish to gain a solid understanding of ‘who are those people in the streets?’ and why they protest, this book is for you.’ - Clare Saunders, University of Exeter