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Voices of the Valley, Voices of the Straits: How Protest Creates Communities
Volume 1

Protest, Culture & Society

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Voices of the Valley, Voices of the Straits

How Protest Creates Communities

Donatella della Porta and Gianni Piazza

216 pages, bibliog., appendix, index

ISBN  978-1-84545-515-6 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (August 2008)

eISBN 978-1-84545-862-1 eBook

Hb View cartYour country: United States - Click here to remove geolocation   Buy the eBook from these vendors Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Available in GOBI®


"The book is a welcome addition to the existing body of work on social and protest movements...[It] offers fresh and original insights into protest movements and its arguments are well made and convincing."  ·  Modern Italy

The insights of this study make for an interesting book that leads us further into the understanding of contemporary conflicts.”  ·  South European Society and Politics


Protest campaigns against large-scale public works usually take place within a local context. However, since the 1990s new forms of protest have been emerging. This book analyses two cases from Italy that illustrate this development: the environmentalist protest campaigns against the TAV (the building of a new high-speed railway in Val de Susa, close to the border with France), and the construction of the Bridge on the Messina Straits (between Calabria and Sicily). Such mobilizations emerge from local conflicts but develop as part of a global justice movement, often resulting in the production of new identities. They are promoted through multiple networks of different social and political groups, that share common claims and adopt various forms of protest action. It is during the protest campaigns that a sense of community is created.

Donatella Della Porta is Professor of Sociology at the European University Institute. Her recent publications include Globalization from Below(University of Minnesota Press, 2006); Quale Europa? Europeizzazione, identità e conflitti (Il Mulino, 2006); Social Movements: an Introduction (2nd edition, Blackwell, 2006) and Transnational Protest and Global Activism (Rowman and Littlefield, 2005).

Gianni Piazza is researcher and lecturer of Political Science and Public Policy Analysis at the University of Catania. He is the author of La città degli affari (1994), Sindaci e politiche in Sicilia (1998) and the co-author of Politiche e partecipazione (2004) and Protests and Arguments: The Citizens' Committees' Campaigns Against Traffic in Four Italian Cities (2005).

Subject: Sociology
Area: Europe



Chapter 1. Local Conflict between Interest and Identity: an Introduction

1. Nimbyism or Social Movements? How to Explain Protest Campaigns
1.1. The Local Dimension
1.2. Social Movements and Environmentalism
1.3. Resources and Mobilisation
1.4. The Political Dimension of the Conflict
1.5. Our Research

2. Campaigns and Networks: Two Periodisations
2.1. The Protest Campaign in Val di Susa
2.2. The No Bridge Campaign

Chapter 2. Networks and Cross-fertilisation: the Resources of the Protest

1. Networks and Cross-fertilisation: an Introduction
2. The Role of Local Institutions
3. The Role of Environmental Associations
4. The Role of Citizens' Committees and the Organisation from Below
5. Squatted Social Centres
6. Trade Unions and Workers
7. Deciding in the Network
8. Concluding Remarks

Chapter 3. Protest and Identity: the Symbolic Construction of Conflict

1. Protest and Identity: an Introduction
2. Framing the Identity: Between Localism and Community
3. Diagnosis and Prognosis: What Progress?
4. Motivational Frames: the Rights of the Community, Mobilisation of the People
5. Concluding Remarks

Chapter 4. In Movement: the Repertoires of the Protest

1. Repertoires of Protest: an Introduction
2. The Construction of Knowledge
3. Protests and the Logic of Numbers
4. Direct Action and Solidarity
5. Protest as an Arena: Site Occupations and Camps
6. Multiform Action
7. Protest and Communication
8. Concluding Remarks

Chapter 5: Voices of the Valley, Voices of the Straits: a Conclusion


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