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Global Movements: Action and Culture by Kevin McDonald

By Kevin McDonald

The earlier decade has witnessed a rare upward thrust of latest international routine that throw into query the way in which we expect approximately tradition, strength, and motion in a globalizing global. This ebook surveys the sector and explores essentially the most major of those activities, together with antiglobalization and the hot Islamic hobbies. those routine require a rethinking of the very proposal of social stream, an idea that owes very much to the civic and commercial tradition that was once so severe to Western modernity, yet could be much less sufficient while exploring types of tradition, motion, and conversation in a globalized international. This e-book explores key dimensions of those pursuits, the tensions they confront, and the crises to which they're topic. it's going to offer an important textual content for college students on globalization and social events.

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Shifting Paradigms Despite internal tensions and debates it is possible to point to a dominant paradigm of “social movement” constructed in terms of transformations in western society and culture. On the one hand, there is a central priority to the formation of groups, which may take the form of association, organization, or, more recently, community. We can locate this process within a wider emergence of western modernity, in the understandings of abstract, bordered space made up of functionally equivalent members, and within a new, modern understanding of representation out of which emerges a modern understanding of symbolic action that recurs in decisive ways in approaches to social movements.

Serge Mallet (1975) writing in France argued that the rise of the student movement and its alliance with new categories of workers pointed to a broader shift due to the increasing importance of intellectual work, and Mallet adopted an older language of class to argue that new professional groups represented a “new working class,” their emergence ushering in new types of conflicts around control and creativity at work, framed in a language of autonomy and creativity. André Gorz believed that emerging conflicts and changing patterns of the organization of production meant it was time to say “farewell to the working class” (1982).

To speak and act as if he were the group made man” (Bourdieu 1985: 740). This lies at the heart of this conception of action, only possible through representation. In this account, action occurs through the constitution of groups. At one level Bourdieu is arguing that social groups exist through leaders and spokespersons representing them, and will cease to exist as groups once they cease to be represented. But at a deeper level, Bourdieu proposes a conception of political action defined in terms of the symbolic: “Politics is the site par excellence of symbolic efficacy, the action that is performed through signs capable of producing social things, and in particular, groups” (1985: 741; emphasis added).

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