Skip to Main Content
Research Guides Databases A-Z Library Catalog Ask a Librarian Library Home Page SUNY New Paltz

Virtual Library Book Displays

Check out our virtual book displays curated by student employees and librarians.

Social Movements: Protests

Social movements are collective sustained campaigns typically in support of either the implementation or the prevention of a change in society’s structure or values. 

This month's display on social movements will be about protests. 

We hope you find the below books and videos interesting. We have tons of online resources about social movements and protest movements you can explore. 

eBooks and Videos

Unarmed Insurrections People Power Movements In Nondemocracies

Kurt Schock compares, along with other examples, the successes of anti-apartheid in South Africa and the people power movement in the Philippines with the failures of the pro-democracy movement in China and the anti-regime challenge in Burma. Unarmed Insurrections looks at how these methods promoted change in some countries but not in others, and provides insight into the power of nonviolent action.

Global democracy, social movements, and feminism

In Global Democracy, Social Movements, and Feminism Catherine Eschle examines the relationship between social movements and democracy in social and political thought in the context of debates about the exclusions and mobilizations generated by gender hierarchies and the impact of globalization. Eschle considers a range of approaches in social and political thought, from long-standing liberal, republican, Marxist and anarchist traditions, through post-Marxist and post-modernist innovations and recent efforts to theorize democracy and social movements at a global level. The author turns to feminist theory and movement practices--and particularly to black and third world feminist interventions--in debates about the democratization of feminism itself. Eschle discusses the ways in which such debates are increasingly played out on a global scale as feminists grapple with the implication of globalization for movement organization. The author then concludes with a discussion of the relevance of these feminist debates for the theorization of democracy more generally in an era of global transformation.

Protest Camps

 

Examining protest camps from all over the world, both contemporary and historical, this remarkable book explores the spaces in which activists can enact radical and often experiential forms of democratic politics.

Identity Work in Social Movements

Movements for social change are by their nature oppositional, as are those who join change movements. This volume offers new scholarship that explores how people negotiate identity within social movements and examines issues of diversity and uniformity among social movement participants.

Howard Zinn: The People’s Historian

This six-part collection features 9 hours of conversation with Howard Zinn, historian and shipyard worker, civil rights activist and author of the hugely successful A People’s History of the United States. The book was a best seller that inspired, and continues to inspire, generations of high school and college students to rethink America’s past. Professor Zinn’s brand of history put ordinary citizens at the center of the story and encouraged readers to acknowledge that change is possible. In 2007, Howard sat down with Ray Suarez, a veteran journalist then featured on PBS Newshour, and their discourse covered many facets of American history, spanning from the Founding Fathers to today's wars in the Middle East.

Who's afraid of the Black Blocs : anarchy in action around the world

Faces masked, dressed in black, and forcefully attacking the symbols of capitalism, Black Blocs have been transformed into an anti-globalization media spectacle. But the popular image of the window-smashing thug hides a complex reality.

Francis Dupuis-Déri outlines the origin of this international phenomenon, its dynamics, and its goals, arguing that the use of violence always takes place in an ethical and strategic context.

Translated into English for the first time and completely revised and updated to include the most recent Black Bloc actions at protests in Greece, Germany, Canada, and England, and the Bloc’s role in the Occupy movement and the Quebec student strike, Who’s Afraid of the Black Blocs? lays out a comprehensive view of the Black Bloc tactic and locates it within the anarchist tradition of direct action.

The Bonus Army in Washington D.C. ca. 1932

In 1932 approximately 15,000 World War I veterans gathered in Washington, D.C., to demand prepayment of a wartime service bonus - not due until 1945 - as unemployment rates and poverty levels skyrocketed during the Depression. President Herbert C. Hoover's denial of their request contributed to his defeat in that year's presidential election.

We recommend clicking on the video tags at the bottom of the video for more interesting historical videos of social protest movements. 

Articulating dissent : protest and the public sphere

Articulating Dissent analyses the new communicative strategies of coalition protest movements and how these impact on a mainstream media unaccustomed to fractured articulations of dissent.

Pollyanna Ruiz shows how coalition protest movements against austerity, war and globalisation build upon the communicative strategies of older single issue campaigns such as the anti-criminal justice bill protests and the women's peace movement. She argues that such protest groups are dismissed in the mainstream for not articulating a 'unified position' and explores the way in which contemporary protesters stemming from different traditions maintain solidarity.

Articulating Dissent investigates the ways in which this diversity, inherent to coalition protest, affects the movement of ideas from the political margins to the mainstream. In doing so this book offers an insightful and original analysis of the protest coalition as a developing political form.

Popular protest in Palestine : the uncertain future of unarmed resistance

This is a thoughtful and sensitive analysis of the history and significance of non-violent civil resistance in the Palestinian national movement. It shows how the thread of unarmed struggle has run through the history of Palestinian liberation, from the establishment of the Israeli state, through the Nakba and to the present day.

Set in this historical context, the book draws upon personal conversations and living history in order to focus on the contemporary movement in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. By analysing this under-emphasised dimension of the Palestinian struggle, the authors argue that today, the popular resistance movement, especially in the West Bank, is the most significant form of struggle against the ongoing occupation.

They also address the international dimensions of the struggle, focusing in particular on the BDS campaign, the role of Israeli and international solidarity activists, and the changing forms of engagement developed by international agencies seeking to work on the roots of the conflict.

Challenging Beijing's mandate of heaven : Taiwan's sunflower movement and Hong Kong's umbrella movement

In 2014, the Sunflower Movement in Taiwan grabbed international attention as citizen protesters demanded the Taiwan government withdraw its free-trade agreement with China. In that same year, in Hong Kong, the Umbrella Movement sustained 79 days of demonstrations, protests that demanded genuine universal suffrage in electing Hong Kong’s chief executive. It too, became an international incident before it collapsed. Both of these student-led movements featured large-scale and intense participation and had deep and far-reaching consequences. But how did two massive and disruptive protests take place in culturally conservative societies? And how did the two “occupy”-style protests against Chinese influences on local politics arrive at such strikingly divergent results?

Challenging Beijing’s Mandate of Heaven aims to make sense of the origins, processes, and outcomes of these eventful protests in Taiwan and Hong Kong. Ming-sho Ho compares the dynamics of the two movements, from the existing networks of activists that preceded protest, to the perceived threats that ignited the movements, to the government strategies with which they contended, and to the nature of their coordination. Moreover, he contextualizes these protests in a period of global prominence for student, occupy, and anti-globalization protests and situates them within social movement studies.

Crisis and control : the militarization of protest policing

Crisis and Control explains how neoliberal transformations of political and economic systems are militarising the policing of protest, based on a compelling empirical study of police agencies and practices from 1995 until the present.

Lesley J. Wood shows that the increasing role of the security and defense industries, professional police associations, anti-terrorism initiatives and 'best practices' in policing networks have accelerated the use of less lethal weapons, pre-emptive arrests, infiltration and barricading strategies against protesters.

The book uses Bourdieu and Boltanski to analyse court transcripts, police reports, policy, training materials and the conference programs of professional police organisations to argue that police agencies are neither omnipotent strategists, nor simple tools of the elite, but institutions struggling to maintain legitimacy, resources and autonomy in a changing field.

Europe in revolt

In Greece, Ireland, Portugal, and Spain the debt crisis that began with the 2008 global recession helped trigger severe austerity measures which only worsened economic conditions.

In response, something happened that few outsiders expected: A massive wave of resistance erupted across Europe. With mainstream parties largely discredited by their support of austerity measures, room opened for radicals to offer a left-wing alternative.

Europe in Revolt examines the key parties and figures behind this insurgency, with insider coverage of the roots of the social crisis and the radicals seeking to reverse it in Cyprus, England, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden.

The people want a radical exploration of the Arab uprising

“The people want . . .”: This first half of slogans chanted by millions of Arab protesters since 2011 revealed a long-repressed craving for democracy. But huge social and economic problems were also laid bare by the protestors’ demands.

Simplistic interpretations of the uprising that has been shaking the Arab world since a young street vendor set himself on fire in Central Tunisia, on 17 December 2010, seek to portray it as purely political, or explain it by culture, age, religion, if not conspiracy theories. Instead, Gilbert Achcar locates the deep roots of the upheaval in the specific economic features that hamper the region’s development and lead to dramatic social consequences, including massive youth unemployment. Intertwined with despotism, nepotism, and corruption, these features, produced an explosive situation that was aggravated by post-9/11 U.S. policies. The sponsoring of the Muslim Brotherhood by the Emirate of Qatar and its influential satellite channel, Al Jazeera, contributed to shaping the prelude to the uprising. But the explosion’s deep roots, asserts Achcar, mean that what happened until now is but the beginning of a revolutionary process likely to extend for many more years to come.

The author identifies the actors and dynamics of the revolutionary process: the role of various social and political movements, the emergence of young actors making intensive use of new information and communication technologies, and the nature of power elites and existing state apparatuses that determine different conditions for regime overthrow in each case. Drawing a balance-sheet of the uprising in the countries that have been most affected by it until now, i.e. Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya and Syria, Achcar sheds special light on the nature and role of the movements that use Islam as a political banner. He scrutinizes attempts at co-opting the uprising by these movements and by the oil monarchies that sponsor them, as well as by the protector of these same monarchies: the U.S. government. Underlining the limitations of the “Islamic Tsunami” that some have used as a pretext to denigrate the whole uprising, Gilbert Achcar points to the requirements for a lasting solution to the social crisis and the contours of a progressive political alternative.

Grabbing back : essays against the global land grab

Climate change ravages the earth, while wealthy elites try to grab as much of the world’s diminishing resources as possible. As Vandana Shiva writes, land is life. But land, and the struggle to possess it, is also power—colonial and corporate power, to be sure, but also the power of the dispossessed to rise up and call for an end to the global land grab. 

Grabbing Back maps this struggle, bringing together analyses that uncover the politics of cultivation and control. In this unprecedented collection, on-the-ground activists join forces with critically acclaimed scholars to document the commodification and consumption of space, from foreclosed homes to annihilated rainforests, from ecotourism in Sri Lanka to the tar sands of Montana, and to outline the strategies and tactics that might stop the destruction.

Peace and Freedom The Civil Rights and Antiwar Movements in the 1960s

Two great social causes held center stage in American politics in the 1960s: the civil rights movement and the antiwar groundswell in the face of a deepening American military commitment in Vietnam. In Peace and Freedom, Simon Hall explores two linked themes: the civil rights movement's response to the war in Vietnam on the one hand and, on the other, the relationship between the black groups that opposed the war and the mainstream peace movement. Based on comprehensive archival research, the book weaves together local and national stories to offer an illuminating and judicious chronicle of these movements, demonstrating how their increasingly radicalized components both found common cause and provoked mutual antipathies.

 

Peace and Freedom shows how and why the civil rights movement responded to the war in differing ways—explaining black militants' hostility toward the war while also providing a sympathetic treatment of those organizations and leaders reluctant to take a stand. And, while Black Power, counterculturalism, and left-wing factionalism all made interracial coalition-building more difficult, the book argues that it was the peace movement's reluctance to link the struggle to end the war with the fight against racism at home that ultimately prevented the two movements from cooperating more fully. Considering the historical relationship between the civil rights movement and foreign policy, Hall also offers an in-depth look at the history of black America's links with the American left and with pacifism.

Everyday revolutions : horizontalism and autonomy in Argentina

In the wake of the global financial crisis, new forms of social organization are beginning to take shape. Disparate groups of people are coming together in order to resist corporate globalization and seek a more positive way forward. These movements are not based on hierarchy; rather than looking to those in power to solve their problems, participants are looking to one another. In certain countries in the West, this has been demonstrated by the recent and remarkable rise of the Occupy movement. But in Argentina, such radical transformations have been taking place for years. Everyday Revolutions tells the story of how regular people changed their country and inspired others across the world.

Reflecting on new forms of social organization, such as horizontalism and autogestión, as well as alternative conceptions of value and power, Marina Sitrin shows how an economic crisis spurred a people's rebellion; how factory workers and medical clinic technicians are running their workplaces themselves, without bosses; how people have taken over land to build homes, raise livestock, grow crops, and build schools, creating their own art and media in the process. 

Daring and groundbreaking, Everyday Revolutions serves as an instructive example for activists the world over. It shows how the experiences of the autonomous movements in Argentina can help answer the question of how to turn a rupture into a revolution.

#IdleNoMore : and the remaking of Canada

Idle No More bewildered many Canadians. Launched by four women in Saskatchewan in reaction to a federal omnibus budget bill, the protest became the most powerful demonstration of Aboriginal identity in Canadian history. Thousands of Aboriginal people and their supporters took to the streets, shopping malls, and other venues, drumming, dancing, and singing in a collective voice.

Idle No More lasted for almost a year before the rallies dissipated. Many observers described it as a spent force. It was anything but. Idle No More was the most profound declaration of Indigenous identity and confidence in Canadian history, sparked by Aboriginal women and their supporters, sustained by young Indigenous peoples, filled with pride and determination. When the drums slowed, a new and different Canada was left in its wake. Partially stunned by the peaceful celebrations, but perplexed by a movement that seemed to have no centre and no leaders, most Canadians missed the point.

Through Idle No More, Aboriginal people have declared that they are a vital and necessary part of Canada's future. The spirit of the drumming, singing and dancing lives on in empowered and confident young Aboriginal people who will shape the future of this country for decades to come.