Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Navigation

Challenging Authority

The Historical Study of Contentious Politics

1998

Michael P. Hanagan, Leslie Page Moch, and Wayne te Brake, editors

Challenging Authority

An overview of the issues involved with understanding conflict in politics.

As long as there have been formal governments, there has been political contention. Where political studies tend to focus on either those who rule or those who are ruled, the essays in this volume call our attention to the interaction between these forces at the very heart of contentious politics.

Contributors: Risto Alapuro, Anton Blok, William Christian, Sonia De Avelar, Roger V. Gould, Marifeli Pérez-Stable, Robert M. Schwartz, Marc W. Steinberg, Carl Strikwerda, Sidney Tarrow, Marjolein ‘t Hart, Charles Tilly, Kim Voss, Andrew Walder, R. Bin Wong.

“An internationally distinguished group of scholars beautifully demonstrate

As long as there have been formal governments, there has been political contention, an interaction between ruler and subjects involving claims and counterclaims, compliance or resistance, cooperation, resignation, condescension, and resentment. Where political studies tend to focus on either those who rule or those who are ruled, the essays in this volume call our attention to the interaction between these forces at the very heart of contentious politics.

Written by prominent scholars of political and social history, these essays introduce us to a variety of political actors: peasants and workers, tax resisters and religious visionaries, bandits and revolutionaries. From Brazil to Beijing, from the late Middle Ages to the present, all were or are challenging authority.

The authors take a distinctly historical approach to their subject, writing both of specific circumstances and of larger processes. While tracing their origins to the social history and structural sociology approaches of the sixties and seventies, the contributors have also profited from subsequent critiques of these approaches. Taken together, their essays demonstrate that the relationship between mobilization for collective action and identity formation is a perennial problem for protest groups-a problem that the historical study of contentious politics, with its focus on political interaction, can do much to explain.

Contributors: Risto Alapuro, U of Helsinki; Anton Blok, U of Amsterdam; William Christian; Sonia De Avelar; Roger V. Gould, U of Chicago; Marifeli Pérez-Stable, SUNY, Old Westbury; Robert M. Schwartz, Mount Holyoke; Marc W. Steinberg, Smith College; Carl Strikwerda, U of Kansas; Sidney Tarrow, Cornell U; Marjolein ‘t Hart, U of Amsterdam; Charles Tilly, Columbia U; Kim Voss, U of California, Berkeley; Andrew Walder, Stanford U; R. Bin Wong, U of California, Irvine.

Challenging Authority

Michael P. Hanagan is adjunct professor at the New School for Social Research.

Leslie Page Moch is professor of history at Michigan State University.

Wayne te Brake is professor of history at Purchase College, SUNY.

Challenging Authority

“An internationally distinguished group of scholars beautifully demonstrate

“This stimulating book of essays, individually superb and collectively wide-ranging in time and space, gives ample demonstration of the power of a particular perspective on the social history of political life. Scholars of contentious politics should for a long time find much food for thought in the variations in time and space suggested by these essays as well as the varying explanatory emphases of their authors.” John Markoff, University of Pittsburgh

“It will whet the appetites of graduate students and researchers for the meatier feasts that the contributors have published on their own.” The Journal of Interdisciplinary History

Challenging Authority

Contents

Preface

Introduction

Challenging Authority: The Historical Study of Contentious Politics Michael P. Hanagan, Leslie Page Moch, and Wayne te Brake

Part I. Networks, Identities, and Claim Making

1. Political Identities Charles Tilly
2. The Riding of the Black Lad and Other Working-Class Ritualistic Actions: Toward a Spatialized and Gendered Analysis of Nineteenth-Century Repertoires Marc W. Steinberg
3. Political Networks and the Local/National Boundary in the Whiskey Rebellion Roger V. Gould
4. Collective Protest and the Waning of the Communist State in China Andrew G. Walder
5. Artisans and Revolution in a Finnish Country Town Risto Alapuro

Part II. Repertoires of Political Contention

6. Bandits and Boundaries: Robber Bands and Secret Societies on the Dutch Frontier (1730-1778) Anton Blok
7. Six Hundred Years of Visionaries in Spain: Those Believed and Those Ignored William A. Christian Jr.
8. Beyond the Parish Pump: The Politicization of the Peasantry in Burgundy, 1750-1850 Robert M. Schwartz
9. Claim Making and the Framing of Defeats: The Interpretation of Losses by American and British Labor Activists, 1886-1895 Kim Voss
10. The Changing Horizons of Tax Resistance in Chinese History R. Bin Wong Par till. Constellations of Political Opportunity
11. Reflections on Historical Possibility: Cuba, 1956-1961 Marifeli Perez-Stable
12. Gender Inequality and Women's Empowerment in Latin America Sonia De Avelar
13. Rules and Repertoires: The Revolt of a Farmers' Republic in the Early-Modern Netherlands
Marjolein 'tHart
14. Capitalists, Immigrants, and Populists: The Impact of Social Conflict and the State on the Origins of World War I Carl Strikwerda
15. Fishnets, Internets, and Catnets: Globalization and Transnational Collective Action Sidney Tarrow

Bibliography
Contributors