Social networks and social movements: Multiorganizational fields and recruitment to Mississippi Freedom Summer
This study explores the role of multiorganizational fields in recruitment to social movements. We study applicants to the 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer project from two sites: the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Wisconsin at Madison. Using network analysis, we develop a model of recruitment that predicts participation on the basis of the structural positions of individuals within the multiorganizational fields, as well as on the basis of individual background factors. We also study the role that the recruitment context plays, by comparing the results at these two universities. Independent of the individual background factors, structural position in the multiorganizational field predicts participation in Freedom Summer at Wisconsin, but not at Berkeley. The effects of individual background factors on participation are also contingent on the recruitment context. We discuss the theoretical implications of our results for the study of the effects of multiorganizational fields and recruitment contexts on participation in social movements.
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