Tag Archives: Richard Cloward

Movement Success and Failure: Looking both at “Ones” and “Zeros”

By Marco Giugni

As a number of observers have argued at different points in time, the study of the outcomes and consequences of social movements has long been a neglected area within the social movement literature. This is no longer true. Today we can count on a wide range of valuable works which have improved our knowledge of why and how protest may lead to political, social, or cultural change. This body of works, however, presents a major shortcoming: they have most often focused on movement success, while being silent on movement failure. Yet, one of the most well-known books looking (also) at the political consequences of social movements, written by Frances Fox Piven and Richard Cloward about 35 years ago, was subtitled “Why They Succeed, How They Fail.” But students of social movements and collective action do not seem to have received their message. Continue reading

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Filed under Essay Dialogues, Social Movement Failure