Sliding Doors of Opportunity: Zapatistas and Their Cycle of Protest

  • María InclánEmail author
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)


Using a cross-sectional time-series event-count model, this study analyzes the effects of local, national, and international variables on pro-Zapatista protests across the 111 localities (municipios) of Chiapas over a 10-year period (1994–2003). Protests were more likely to occur in localities with previous protest activity, a closed political system, and a larger presence of the military. Local and national electoral openings, as well as a larger local and national presence of the Zapatistas’ presumed political ally, the Partido de la Revolución Democrática (PRD), had a negative relationship with protest activity. Specific openings to the Zapatistas also worked as protest depressants. International attention did not show any significant effect on Zapatista protest activity. However, these institutional and specific openings were only ephemeral opportunities in that they did not translate into substantive concessions for the movement. They appear to have decreased the strength of the Zapatista protest cycle, while the international attention to the movement did not show any significant effect on it.


Mexico Zapatista EZLN Chiapas Cycle of protest PRD 


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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.División de Estudios PolíticosCentro de Investigación y Docencia EconómicasMéxico, D.F.México

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