Understanding Southern Social Movements  book cover
1st Edition

Understanding Southern Social Movements

Edited By

Simin Fadaee

ISBN 9781138898004
Published February 26, 2016 by Routledge
232 Pages

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Book Description

Southern social movements have played an important role in shaping world history and politics. Nevertheless, scholarly literature on movements of the global South remains limited and restricted to testing the social movement theory which was developed in the North. This Northern-centric approach largely fails to provide a meaningful understanding of Southern movements because it is not directly applicable to the differing historical backgrounds, culture and socio-economic structures found in the South. Much of the uniqueness and complexity of Southern social movements has therefore been overlooked.

This collection analyses recent events and developments in Southern social movements, introducing well-researched case studies from fifteen countries of the global South. Arranged in two parts, the volume examines firstly movements which focus on rights and quality of life issues, and secondly the post-2011 wave of uprisings which started with Tunisian and Egyptian movements. Contributing to ongoing discussions about the Northern-centric nature of social movement theory and the social sciences more generally, the authors enter into dialogue with the debate on local and national levels, as well as globalizing processes.

Through an interdisciplinary approach this book broadens the theoretical and empirical perspectives for the study of social movements and will appeal to sociologists, political scientists, scholars and students of social movements, and social activists.

Table of Contents

Foreword  Introduction: genesis of Social Movement Theory and Southern Movements   Part I: The ‘New’ Social Movements of the South  1. Rethinking Southern Environmentalism: Iranian Environmental Movement and its Premises   2. Claiming ‘Ecological Property Rights’: Movements against Hydropower Projects in Maharashtra (India), 1960-2004  3. The Feminist Movement and Counter Movement in Morocco  4. Being In-Between: The Women’s Rights Movement in Kenya  5. The Technocratic Turn of the Mexican Human Rights Movement: From the Administration of Justice to the Management of Suffering   6. Gender and Sexual Diversity Organizing in Africa    Part II: The ‘New’ Wave of Southern Movements  7. Fooled by the Folol?: How Antagonisms and Misrecognitions within Social Currents Stunted the Egyptian Revolution   8. Social Movements, Rebels and Free-riders: The Yemeni Uprising of 2011   9. Reading Gezi Protests as a "moment"  10. The Long June: 2013 mobilizations and the future of social movements in Brazil    11. The Student Movement in Chile and the Neo Liberal Agenda in Crisis   12. Social Movements, State Power and Party Networks in the Kingdom of Thailand

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Simin Fadaee is Assistant Professor of Society and Transformation in Asia and Africa at Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany.


"The struggle to create a genuinely global social science, beyond theories generated exclusively in the global North, needs fresh exploration of social experience in the South. Understanding Southern Social Movements provides immensely valuable evidence on movements, politics and social change across the postcolonial world. It reveals new dynamics in some of the most vital issues of our time, from the environment to sexuality to democracy and the state."

—Raewyn Connell, author of "Rethinking gender from the South" (2014); Southern Theory (2007); and Confronting Equality (2011)

"This very timely book by a promising new generation of researchers shows what social movement studies and social sciences in general has to learn from movements in the Global South. A vibrant plea to move beyond Western-centrism and towards empirical-based research that fully includes actors, challenges and researchers from the Global South."

—Geoffrey Pleyers, University of Louvain, President of the Research Committee on ‘Social Movements’, International Sociological Association