Tag Archives: emotions

Informing Activists: What can be done about activist burnout?

Sharon Nepstad

What can be done about activist burnout?

Recommended Readings:


Nepstad, Sharon Erickson. 2004. “Persistent resistance: Commitment and community in the Plowshares movement.” Social Problems 51(1):43-60.


Bunnage, Leslie A. 2014. “Social movement engagement over the long haul: Understanding activist retention.” Sociology Compass 8(4):433-445.


Corrigall-Brown, Catherine. 2011. Patterns of protest: Trajectories of participation in social movements. Stanford University Press, 2011.

We would like to thank the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation for their support of the Youth Activism Project through the Youth and Participatory Politics Research Network.

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Filed under Essay Dialogues, Informing Activists

Understanding the Participatory Emotions of a Social Movement

By Felicia McGhee-Hilt

Ella. Lee. Pettway. Most people are not familiar with that name but she was one of the 50,000 foot soldiers of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. She is also my maternal grandmother.

I deliberated for quite some time about whether I should do a study on the Montgomery Bus Boycott because so much has already been done on it. However, while at the Alabama Department of Archives in Montgomery, I decided to look through old newspaper articles about the boycott. I viewed many pictures, but there was one picture on the front of the newspaper The Montgomery Advertiser that caught my eye. The picture consisted of black domestics walking to work. As I continued to view the picture, I realized that one of the women looked extremely familiar. It was my grandmother. With purse in hand, she was walking along with the many other people that day. It was then that I realized that the Montgomery Bus Boycott was still a ripe research topic.

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Filed under Essay Dialogues, Origins of Social Movements