DA3800 Theory and Practice of Social Revolution

This course is intended to examine various forms and dynamics of social revolution and theoretical debates in the study of social movements. We will be particularly concerned with the social and political context of insurgency, focusing on basic questions, such as: Under what circumstances are grievances or political dissents more likely to evolve into an insurgency? How do dissidents frame their agendas to acquire support and to recruit others? In addition, how do insurgency movements become transnational? 1) Theoretical Synthesis: this course provides an overview of insurgency from the conceptual framework of social movement theory. Rather than treating social revolution as a self-contained phenomenon, this course will introduce alternative frameworks and explanatory models generated from social movement theory in order to isolate the types of factors that are most pertinent to understanding the causes and processes of insurgency. 2) Empirical Application: Based on the theoretical models this course introduces, we will focus on a small number of empirical cases and identify underlying factors to explain how and why certain groups use different political, military, and social methods to pursue their goals. Students will be asked to evaluate which theoretical models are most applicable under particular circumstances in each case. Prerequisites: None.

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Quarter Offered

  • As Required