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The Centre on Social Movement Studies

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Publications

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Resisting the Backlash: Street Protest in Italy

Monograph - 2022

Author: Donatella della Porta, Niccolò Bertuzzi, Daniela Chironi, Chiara Milan, Martín Portos & Lorenzo Zamponi

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… more
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Migrant Protest. Interactive Dynamics in Precarious Mobilizations

Monograph - 2021

Author: Elias Steinhilper

Over the past two decades, migrant protest has proliferated worldwide, explicitly posing questions of identity, rights, and equality in a globalized world. Nonetheless, such mobilizations are often considered anomalies in social movement studies and political sociology more broadly, due to "weak interests" and a particularly disadvantageous position of "outsiders" to claim rights connected to citizenship.… more

Anti-Neoliberal Populisms in Comparative Perspective. A Latinamericanisation of Southern Europe?

Monograph - 2020

Author: Enrico Padoan

In this book, Enrico Padoan proposes an original middle-range theory to explain the emergence and the internal organisation of anti-neoliberal populist parties in Latin America and Southern Europe, and the relationships between these parties and the organised working class. Padoan begins by tracing the diverging evolution of the electoral Lefts in Latin America and Southern… more
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CasaPound Italia: Contempory Extreme Right Politics

Monograph - 2020

Author: Caterina Froio, Pietro Castelli Gattinara, Giorgia Bulli & Matteo Albanese

In 2003, the occupation of a state-owned building in Rome led to the emergence of a new extreme-right youth movement: CasaPound Italia (CPI). Its members described themselves as 'Fascists of the Third Millennium', and were unabashed about their admiration for Benito Mussolini. Over the next 15 years, they would take to the street, contest national… more

Discursive Turns and Critical Junctures: Debating Citizenship after the Charlie Hebdo Attacks

Monograph - 2020

Author: Donatella della Porta, Pietro Castelli Gattinara, Konstantinos Eleftheriadis & Andrea Felicetti

This volume focuses on the debate that developed in France, Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom after the terrorist attacks against Charlie Hebdo and the kosher supermarket, in January 2015. The book offers an in-depth analysis of the unfolding of the public debate in terms of content of claims making, framing, and justifications as well… more
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The Contentious Politics of Expertise. Experts, activism and grassroots environmentalism

Monograph - 2020

Author: Riccardo Emilio Chesta

Based on mixed-methods research and ethnographic fieldwork at various sites in Italy, this book examines the relationship between expertise and activism in grassroots environmentalism. Presenting interviews with citizens, activists and experts, it considers activism surrounding infrastructure in urban areas, in connection with water management, transport, tour- ism and waste disposal. Through comparisons between different political… more
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Resistere alla crisi. I percorsi dell'azione sociale diretta

Monograph - 2019

Author: Lorenzo Bosi, Lorenzo Zamponi

L’Italia della crisi appare schiacciata tra apatia e risentimento. Ma guardando in basso, si possono vedere forme di resistenza che raramente emergono sulla scena pubblica, e che riattualizzano l’azione collettiva, riposizionando l’individuo nella sfera pubblica. Dalle grandi organizzazioni sociali alle occupazioni abitative, dai gruppi di acquisto solidale alle fabbriche recuperate, passando per i circoli culturali… more
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Social Mobilization beyond Ethnicity. Civic Activism and Grassroots Movements in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Monograph - 2019

Author: Chiara Milan

This book offers an in-depth investigation of the emergence and spread of social mobilizations that transcend ethnicity in societies violently divided along ethno-national lines. Using Bosnia Herzegovina as a case study, the book explores episodes of mobilization which have superseded ethno-nationalist cleavages. Bosnia Herzegovina emerged from the 1992–95 war brutally impoverished and deeply ethnically divided,… more
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I movimenti animalisti in Italia. Strategie, politiche e pratiche di attivismo.

Monograph - 2018

Author: Niccolò Bertuzzi

In Italia, l’attenzione verso gli animali è in costante crescita, come si evince dall’interesse di opinione pubblica e partiti politici, e dall’emergere di stili di vita che promuovono una revisione del rapporto con le altre specie. Analizzando questi (e altri) aspetti, il libro si focalizza nello specifico su coloro che si occupano a livello organizzato… more
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Political Strategies and Social Movements in Latin America. The Zapatistas and Bolivian Cocaleros

Monograph - 2018

Author: Leonidas Oikonomakis

This book investigates how social movements form their political strategies in their quest for social change and -when they shift from one strategy to another- why and how that happens. The author creates a model which distinguishes between two different roads to social change: one that passes through the seizure of state power and one… more

News

10/01/2022

SNS announces 14 fully-funded PhD positions

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The Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at the Scuola Normale Superiore in Florence, Italy is pleased to announce 14 PhD fellowships beginning on November 1, 2022.

16/07/2021

Prof. della Porta to lead VolkswagenStiftung-funded ECSEuro project

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Reflecting the European challenge of transnational cooperation and multiple crises, this project asks how local political initiatives across Europe enact citizenship and solidarity and contribute to the vision of a more democratic Europe from below.

09/07/2021

SNS announces 7 fully-funded PhD positions

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The Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at the Scuola Normale Superiore announces 7 fully-funded PhD positions. Deadline for applications: 21 August 2021.

28/09/2020

Four post-doctoral research positions on the pandemic

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The Scuola Normale Superiore announces four post-doctoral positions to be activated as part of the research project “After the coronavirus pandemic: The effects of the health emergency on society and knowledge.” 

26/02/2020

CFP Athens conference "Capitalism, Democracy, Contention: A Decade of Crisis" 13-15 May 2020

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Aspiring to shed light on the Greek experience in the era of crisis in a comparative, inter-disciplinary perspective, the Laboratory on Contentious Politics (Department of Political Science and History, Panteion University, Athens), the Centre on Social Movement Studies (Scuola Normale Superiore, Florence) and the Hellenic Political Science Association are organizing an international conference to be held at Panteion University, on 13, 14 and 15 May 2020.

12/12/2019

Prof. Donatella Della Porta to Be Awarded Honorary PhD

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On Friday 13, 2019, the University of the Peloponnese (PSIR) will award an honorary doctorate to Professor Donatella Della Porta, Dean of the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences at the Scuola Normale Superiore.

Publications

Journal Article - 2022

Forging, bending, and breaking: Enacting the “illiberal playbook” in Hungary and Poland

Andrea Pirro & Ben Stanley
We first argue that illiberal changes are ideologically founded and identify how both populism and nativism figure in the policymaking of illiberals in power. We then show how these practices emerge from a common “illiberal playbook”—a paradigm of policy change comprising forms of forging, bending, and breaking—and elaborate on the notion that illiberal governments are using legalism to kill liberalism.

Journal Article - 2022

Populists in power and conspiracy theories

Andrea Pirro & Paul Taggart
Looking at three cases of populists in government – Orbán in Hungary, Trump in the United States, and Chávez in Venezuela – we examine the definition of conspiring elites (who), the circumstances under which conspiracy theories are propagated (when), and the ultimate purpose of conspiratorial framing (why).

Journal Article - 2022

The Three Faces of Populism in Power: Policy, Policies and Politics

Manuela Caiani & Paolo Graziano
The article explores the consequences of the increasing presence of both left- and right-wing populist parties in government, critically reflecting on the recent scholarship on the topic, underlining promising venues for future research and outlining a conceptual framework which constitutes the background of this special issue entitled ‘Populism in Power and its Consequences’.

Monograph - 2022

Resisting the Backlash: Street Protest in Italy

Donatella della Porta, Niccolò Bertuzzi, Daniela Chironi, Chiara Milan, Martín Portos & Lorenzo Zamponi
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.

Journal Article - 2022

The mobilization for spatial justice in divided societies. Urban commons, trust reconstruction and socialist memory in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Chiara Milan
The article contributes to the urban studies literature and the study of social movements in divided societies by disclosing the distinctive features and mobilizing potential that the notion of urban commons retains in a war-torn society with a socialist legacy.

Edited Volume - 2021

Contentious Migrant Solidarity. Shrinking Spaces and Civil Society Contestation

Donatella della Porta & Elias Steinhilper
Building upon social movement and migration studies, this book maps the two sides of ‘contentious solidarity’: a shrinking civic space and its contestation by civil society.

Journal Article - 2021

Learning from Democratic Practices: New Perspectives in Institutional Design

Andrea Felicetti
Drawing from literature on democratic practices in social movements and democratic innovations, the article illustrates three ways to advance institutional design in the wake of the systemic turn.

Journal Article - 2021

Far-right protest mobilisation in Europe: Grievances, opportunities and resources

Pietro Castelli Gattinara, Caterina Froio & Andrea Pirro
In this article, we bridge previous research on the far right and social movements to advance hypotheses on the drivers of far-right protest mobilisation based on grievances, opportunities and resource mobilisation models. We use an original dataset combining novel data on 4,845 far-right protest events in 11 East and West European countries (2008–2018), with existing measures accounting for the (political, economic and cultural) context of mobilisation.

Journal Article - 2021

Populism between voting and non-electoral participation

Andrea Pirro & Martín Portos
The article focuses on a neglected aspect of populist mobilisation, i.e. non-electoral participation (NEP), and elaborates on the extent to which populist party voters engage politically outside the polling station. While challenging common understandings of populism as inherently distrustful and apathetic, and protest as an exclusive practice of the left, the study critically places NEP at the heart of populism in general, and populist right politics in particular.

Monograph - 2021

Migrant Protest. Interactive Dynamics in Precarious Mobilizations

Elias Steinhilper
This book explores the interactions and spaces shaping the emergence, trajectory, and fragmentation of migrant protest in unfavorable contexts of marginalization.