From Outrage to Action: The Politics of Grass-roots Dissent
University of Illinois Press, 1993 - 195 pagine
In one case a local judge declared a five-year-old sexual assault victim
a "particularly promiscuous young lady." In another, an innocent
black man died in police custody. In these cases and two others, outraged
citizens banded together to protest and seek redress for the injustices.
Through in-depth interviews with activists, Laura Woliver examines these
community actions, studying the groups involved and linking her conclusions
to larger questions of political power and the impact of social movements.
Her findings will make fascinating reading for those interested in the
rise and fall of grass-roots interest groups, the nature of dissent, and
the reasons why people volunteer countless hours, sometimes in the face
of community opposition and isolation, to dedicate themselves to a cause.
The ad hoc interest groups studied are the Committee to Recall Judge
Archie Simonson (Madison), the Coalition for Justice for Ernest Lacy (Milwaukee),
Concerned Citizens for Children (Grant County, Wisconsin), and Citizens
Taking Action (Madison). Woliver relates the community responses in these
cases to those in the Jeffrey Dahmer mass murder case and the beating
by Los Angeles police of Rodney King.
"A pioneering investigation of local, ad hoc interest groups that
are launched by a blatant injustice. . . . Explores the impressive defensive
capabilities against change of established social groups and portrays
the complex consequences of 'sputtering interests' for attitudes (such
as consciousness raising), for action, and for future policy. An important
and innovative contribution."
-- Mary Edelman, author of The Symbolic Uses of Politics
"A truly humanistic piece of social science research, offering fascinating
insights on grassroots participants, their feelings, and their fates."
-- Janet K. Boles, author of American Feminism: New Issues for
a Mature Movement
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