The Acid Test: Reconstructing the Occupation of Urban Public Space as a Socially Determined Practice
Using the results of his multi-layered, comparative study on the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street, Kumkar reconstructs Occupy Wall Street’s occupation of Zuccotti Park as a socially determined protest-practice. The explosive growth of the occupation has to be understood as rooted in the resonance of the protesters’ lived experience of the crisis with the practice of the occupation. The occupation allowed them to overcome fears of collective action and catered to their dialogical habitus. However, the complex relation between this resonance and other social group’s habitual affinity, together with the dynamic of the social fields around the protest, hindered Occupy Wall Street from transforming this originally successful practice into a more sustainable social movement when the park was evicted.
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