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category: peer-reviewed article

title |

Desperately seeking politics: political attitudes of participants in three demonstrations for workers’ rights in Italy

author(s) | Donatella della Porta and Herbert Reiter

journal | Mobilization

publication year | 2012     volume | 17     issue | 3

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abstract | Social conflicts tend to take different forms. This article compares three demonstrations on issues of social justice in Italy: a traditional Labour Day demonstration, a march supporting a general strike called by the largest trade union CGIL and the EuroMayDay parade, representing a “new” type of movement. Focusing on conceptions of democracy among activists, the article stresses that the economic crisis is a crisis of representative democracy as well. Protestors on social justice and labour rights expressed extremely low levels of trust in government, parliament and political parties; the lowest were found among younger participants. At the same time, this lack of trust is coupled with confidence in the capacity of the citizens—especially if organized at the international level—to take the world in their hands. Despite high levels of distrust demonstrators believe that to address social inequality, one must strengthen all levels of government—politics must regain control over the market.

country project | The Netherlands

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