Citation

Criminal Protest Without Discipline

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Abstract:

Reading Merton's anomie theory back into the study of protest, I analyze social movements that arise in the absence of political opportunities, and respond to threats affecting the lifeworld of the powerless. I then state an eco-anomie hypothesis that replaces theories of eco-terrorism. Criminal protest aimed at corporate targets is undertheorized because it does not fall within the boundaries of academic disciplines. There are continuities between criminal protest targeting industry and contentious politics, but there are also important breaks in forms, goals, and tactics. Separately analyzing industrial sabotage and contentious politics yields new understandings about this form of criminal protest, an often-misunderstood category lost between the various disciplines of criminology, social psychology and social movements. This paper also clarifies a limitation of the dominant paradigm in movements scholarship: political process theory or PPT, which rejects social psychological theories of deviance. PPT does not explain anomic protest that is tied to the absence of political opportunity. Relying on a modified version of Foucault’s method for the meta-historical review of the social sciences as object, I use textual analysis to explain how PPT fails to account for industrial sabotage, when life-threatening conditions such as deforestation, urban sprawl or toxic dumps, are combined with a lack of political opportunities and the presence of illegitimate means, leading to cultural contention aimed directly at the public. Moreover, I show how conditions of knowledge within movements scholarship led to theories about institutionalized politics, full of resources and opportunities, rather than disruptive protests, which normalizes the exceptional.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

polit (151), protest (148), theori (95), crimin (94), movement (71), social (66), opportun (64), industri (57), anomi (51), cultur (47), criminolog (43), cbsm (42), disciplin (41), mean (36), ppt (36), crime (36), target (35), terror (32), life (32), also (31), action (30),
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Association:
Name: American Sociological Association Annual Meeting
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http://www.asanet.org


Citation:
URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p409689_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Martinez, Elizabeth. "Criminal Protest Without Discipline" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association Annual Meeting, Hilton Atlanta and Atlanta Marriott Marquis, Atlanta, GA, Aug 13, 2010 <Not Available>. 2014-11-27 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p409689_index.html>

APA Citation:

Martinez, E. E. , 2010-08-13 "Criminal Protest Without Discipline" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association Annual Meeting, Hilton Atlanta and Atlanta Marriott Marquis, Atlanta, GA Online <APPLICATION/PDF>. 2014-11-27 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p409689_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Reading Merton's anomie theory back into the study of protest, I analyze social movements that arise in the absence of political opportunities, and respond to threats affecting the lifeworld of the powerless. I then state an eco-anomie hypothesis that replaces theories of eco-terrorism. Criminal protest aimed at corporate targets is undertheorized because it does not fall within the boundaries of academic disciplines. There are continuities between criminal protest targeting industry and contentious politics, but there are also important breaks in forms, goals, and tactics. Separately analyzing industrial sabotage and contentious politics yields new understandings about this form of criminal protest, an often-misunderstood category lost between the various disciplines of criminology, social psychology and social movements. This paper also clarifies a limitation of the dominant paradigm in movements scholarship: political process theory or PPT, which rejects social psychological theories of deviance. PPT does not explain anomic protest that is tied to the absence of political opportunity. Relying on a modified version of Foucault’s method for the meta-historical review of the social sciences as object, I use textual analysis to explain how PPT fails to account for industrial sabotage, when life-threatening conditions such as deforestation, urban sprawl or toxic dumps, are combined with a lack of political opportunities and the presence of illegitimate means, leading to cultural contention aimed directly at the public. Moreover, I show how conditions of knowledge within movements scholarship led to theories about institutionalized politics, full of resources and opportunities, rather than disruptive protests, which normalizes the exceptional.


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