Studying Social Movements: Some Conceptual Challenges

Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Social Movements book series (PSHSM)


In acknowledging, though not stressing, my disciplinary identity as a sociologist, I will present and reflect on several challenges that we are confronted with when analysing social movements. Among the many more challenges that exist, five of these will be identified, discussed and partly illustrated in what follows: defining the subject of research, asking relevant questions, theorizing social movements, choosing adequate methods and sources, and interpreting and contextualizing findings.


Social Movement Collective Identity Sociological Theory Social Movement Structure Resource Mobilization 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Protest- und BewegungsforschungBerlinGermany

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