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The Centre on Social Movement Studies

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Anti-Islamic PEGIDA Beyond Germany: Explaining Differences in Mobilisation

Lars Erik Berntzen and Manès Weisskircher

This study provides a first comparative analysis of PEGIDA beyond Germany and its core region of Saxony. Combining protest event analysis with online data and network analysis, the authors identify why PEGIDA mustered low-scale support in some countries and failed in others.

Type: Journal Article
Year: 2016

The rise of anti-Islamic PEGIDA (Patriotische Europäer gegen die Islamisierung des Abendlandes) is one of the latest sustained episodes of radical right mobilisation in Western Europe outside the electoral arena. This study provides a first comparative analysis of PEGIDA beyond Germany and its core region of Saxony. Combining protest event analysis with online data and network analysis, we identify why PEGIDA mustered low-scale support in some countries and failed in others. Focusing on Austria, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland the study reveals the pivotal importance of the organisers’ agency and their relations to other radical right players. Unlike the sui generis case in Dresden, the PEGIDA label has become a rallying point appropriated by pre-established radical right activists using it for their own mobilisation efforts. Furthermore, the analysis reveals the significance of protest policing, in the form of state bans, for the fate of PEGIDA beyond Germany. Finally, it demonstrates the importance of online spheres as channels for dissemination of radical right world-views and the interplay of offline and online mobilisation.

Lars Erik Berntzen, Manès Weisskircher, 2016. "Anti-Islamic PEGIDA Beyond Germany: Explaining Differences in Mobilisation". Journal of Intercultural Studies, Volume 37, Issue 6, pp. 556-573

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07256868.2016.1235021?journalCode=cjis20

News

19/12/2017

10 Fully funded 4-years PhD positions in Political Science and Sociology, for the AA. 2018/2019, Scuola Normale Superiore

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The grant is for 4 years. it is open to students of all nationalities. Coverage of research expenses (conferences, summer schools, research periods abroads) is provided.

13/12/2017

Call for Paper: Conference “1968-2018, fifty years after: Where is the social movements field going?”

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Taking the 1968 anniversary as a stimulating moment for reflection, this conference seeks to provide space for looking at the implications of that period on social movement research as well as addressing a number of key questions in current social movement research.

04/12/2017

Martin Portos Garcia wins the ISA's Seventh Worldwide Competition for Junior Sociologists

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The International Sociological Association has just announced the list of the winners of the Seventh Worldwide Competition for Junior Sociologists engaged in social research, amongst which Martin Portos Garcia - post-doc fellow at COSMOS

Publications

Journal Article - 2017

Repertoires of knowledge practices: Social movements in times of crisis

Donatella della Porta and Elena Pavan
Starting from the assumption that knowledge becomes all the more important for movements in times of crisis, as old structures are challenged and new ones envisaged and proved feasible, the purpose of this paper is to suggest ways to expand the toolkit of social movement studies in order to empirically address knowledge practices as a meaningful part of contemporary progressive activism.

Journal Article - 2017

Keeping dissent alive under the Great Recession: no-radicalisation and protest in Spain after the eventful 15M/indignados campaign

Martín Portos
Traditional theories of collective action would predict that, after a triggering event, the trajectory of a wave of protest is determined by the institutionalisation–radicalisation tandem. Based on the Spanish cycle of anti-austerity and against the political status quo protest in the shadow of the Great Recession, this article contends with this approach, as a clear trend towards radicalisation is never observed as the cycle unfolds. An alternative interpretative framework is developed to understand protest trajectories when collaborative inter-organisational strategies prevail.