Refreshers in Social Movement Theory: Anthony Oberschall, Social Conflict and Social Movements

Anthony Oberschall authors Social Conflict and Social Movements, focusing on the micro level aspects of conflict i.e. the group bases of social conflict and its psychological and social psychological foundations, including public opinion, riot, and social movements. The authors approach can be described as many other present sociologists, the “resource management” approach. In this concept Oberschall lays out both material [job, income, savings] and non material [authority, moral commitment, habits of industry] resources as being complexly managed in everyday activity and earmarked for group ends and use. There are discontented groups seeking to assemble and invest i.e., mobilize resources for group goals locked in conflict with incumbent power i.e., social control who are also using the same process of resource mobilization.

Both are competing for uncommitted third party resources and allocating these resources based on enlightened self-interest.

this is significant to the study of social movements because, according to Oberschall, discontented groups can produce high rates of social movement participation by lowering the risks of participation and increasing rewards simultaneously if they can manipulate the rewards system and favor involvement in the opposition groups.

The book can be found on Amazon for cheap

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