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(Non)violence and the anti-corporate globalisation movements

February 21, 2013

Brief notes on Juris, J.S. 2008. Networking Futures: the Movements against Corporate Globalization. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press.

p. 91 ‘Militant anticapitalists… [adopt] more aggressive direct-action styles and practices [that] embody their militant visions’. They practice ‘”self-defense” and violence against property, including sabotage against bank tellers and corporate storefronts’.

By contrast, RCADE, MRG and other ‘network-based movements… tend to carry out nonviolent forms of civil disobedience’.

p. 142 ‘Militant tactics involve the ritual enactment of violent performances through distinct bodily techniques, political symbols, and protest styles’ e.g. combat boots, black attire, masked faces.

p. 162 Network activism as a form finds it very hard to counter the ‘[violent] tactical choices of others’.

p. 183 Media coverage of Genoa protests in 2001 turned Black Bloc militants into villains ‘decontextualising images and reinserting them within a narrative of the violent anarchist other’.

p. 194 Violence = ‘powerful cultural construct’. Disputes over definition of violence shape competing political identities. This entails ‘a cultural politics of violence’ [cf. Goldfarb 2012]

p. 195 Indiscriminate state terror in Genoa undermined activists’ ‘diversity-of-tactics principle’. Militant violence excuse used by riot police to attack both violent and nonviolent protesters.

p. 292-3 Media coverage of anti-corporate globalisation markedly different in Spain and USA. In Spain activist demands entered mainstream discourse via the media which generally favourable to their demands and portraying them as nonviolent. By contrast, in USA much stronger pro-globalisation discourse, including NYT.

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