Hizbullah’s Women: Internal Transformation in a Social Movement and Militia
Baylouny, Anne Marie
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How and when do movements transform? Change in social movements has been attributed to external, structural political opportunities and to repression, generating either moderation or radicalization, respectively. Locating all change outside the movement, however, neglects large categories of change, particularly the agency of members. Even when the influence of members is acknowledged, it is still generally limited to internal political battles for control or is viewed as reflecting changes in external political opportunities. Yet factors outside political opportunities can change members' priorities for the movement and their view of their own place in it. Economic and historical factors falling outside social movement analysis can profoundly affect extant members, while new constituencies and generations can enter the movement with different ideas. Particularly in the developing world and in authoritarian countries, much mobilizing takes place within the informal, everyday realm and within movement institutions-such as social services and the media-that are not geared to formal politics. In short, Social Movement Theory (SMT) as currently formulated omits the capacity of members, in realms outside those geared to formal politics or control of the organization, to affect the movement as a whole.
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