Many developing countries pursue policies of rapid industrialization in order to achieve faster economic growth. Some policies cause displacement forcing many individuals to take up a fight against the state. Interestingly some of these dissenting individuals are more successful in organizing their protests than others. In this book, Ashok Swain demonstrates how displaced people mobilize to protest with the help of their social networks. Studying protests against large industrial and development projects, Swain compares the mobilization process between a traditionally protest rich and a protest poor region in India to explain how social network structures are a key component to understand this variation. He reveals how improved mobilization capability coincides with their evolving social network structure thanks to recent exposure to external actors like religious missionaries and radical left activists. The in-depth examination of the existing literature on social mobilization and extensive fieldwork conducted in India make this book a well-organized and useful resource to analyze protest mobilization in developing regions.
Ashok Swain, Professor of Peace and Conflict Research, Uppsala University, Uppsala Centre for Sustainable Development, Uppsala University, Sweden
'This is an important contribution to the literature on social movements. By paying attention to the role that social networking plays in todayÂ´s information technology environment, Swain not only makes a theoretical point regarding how we study social movements but also demonstrates how it has helped to sustain and extend social activism in two different Indian states - Kerala and Orissa. The book should be of interest to academics and activists alike.' Goran Hyden, University of Florida, USA