Riots and Militant Occupations provides students with theoretical reflections and qualitative case studies on militant contentious political action across a range from across Europe to Nigeria, China and Turkey.
This multi-authored, interdisciplinary collection adopts an interpretive and participatory approach to examining meanings, affects, embodiment, identity, relationality and space in the context of riots and protests. The rapidly shifting terrain of riots and occupations has left existing social-scientific theories lagging behind, challenging dominant constructions of agency and rationality. This book will fill this gap, by offering new understandings and critical perspectives on the question of what happens in space, in time and between people, during and after riots.
Weaving together observations, experiences and analyses of riots from participants, theorists and social scientists, the authors craft theoretical perspectives in close connection with researched practices. These perspectives take the form of new theoretical contributions on the spatiality, affectivity and immanent meaning of riots, and grassroots qualitative case-studies of particular events and contexts. Countering the preconceptions of riots as a trail of broken windows, burned dumpsters and angry conservatives, this book aims to demonstrate that riots are fundamentally creative, generating forms of meaning, power, knowledge, affect, social connection and participatory space which are rare, and sociologically important, in the modern world.
Introduction: Utopian Ruptures, Alissa Starodub and Andrew Robinson / Part I: Theoretical Reflections / Chapter 1: A Theory of Rupture: Riot and Participatory Research, Alissa Starodub / Chapter 2: Life is Magical: Affect and Empowerment in Autonomous Social Movements, Andrew Robinson / Chapter 3: Riot, Rupture and Insurrectionary Theatre in a Dysfunctional Society, Puv Love / Chapter 4: On the Spatiality of Square Occupations: Lessons from Syntagma and Tahrir, Dimitris Soudias / Part II: Expressions / Riots and Militant Occupations in Pictures and Poems / Part III: Critical Case Studies / Chapter 5: 'Riots' in the Jungle: Collective Refusal and Resistance in Calais, Calais Migrant Solidarity / Chapter 6: Riots and Remembrance on the Streets of Barcelona: The Collective Learning of Subversive Techniques, Peter Gelderloos / Chapter 7: Cortège de Tête,
Mauvaise Troupe / Chapter 8: The Pressure to Condemn: Narrating the Stockholm Riot of 2013, Janna Frenzel / Chapter 9: Contesting Neoliberalism: The Political Economy of the 2012 Occupy Nigeria Protests, Kehinde Olusola Olayode / Chapter 10: Media as a Double Edged Sword: Grassroots Media Work in the Syrian Revolution, Ayham Dayoub / Chapter 11: “Kick it like China” – Riots, Action, and Repression, Katika Kühnreich / Conclusion: Some Reflections on Contemporary Riots and Militant Occupations, Andrew Robinson and Alissa Starodub / About the Authors / Index
Andrew Robinson is a UK-based independent researcher and activist. He authored Power, Resistance and Conflict in the Contemporary World and over 20 articles and chapters.
Alissa Starodub is a Graduate Researcher at the Institute for Social Movements at Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany.
This impressive collection of essays draws heavily on narratives by active participants in riots and offers illuminating accounts of the transgressive, resistant actions in such events. Its scope is broad and takes in many protests and locations that are less frequently attended to in academia and, more particularly, it offers a challenge to the ‘northern’ focus of much previous work.