international encyclopedia of social and behavioral sciences . . . > > http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/referenceworks/9780080430768#ancpt1785 > > as the second sentence suggests, there is some consensus among > sociologists that social movements > (1) seek to promote or resist some major social change, > (2) to a significant extent use non-institutional means, and > (3) establish a relationship with more general political activity > > the encyclopedia includes articles on 17 different social movements (if icounted correctly), but ido not believe that the editors are in any way claiming that this is an > exhaustive list . . .
Social movements are elusive phenomena empirically; they are also hard to > grasp conceptually. Yet three criteria for defining them are stated: their > critical relation to social change, which they aim at promoting or > inversely at resisting, the common use of uninstitutionalized means by > participants, and the political relevance of their protest-oriented > actions. The early and exclusive identification of the notion with > proletarian movements in industrial society had to be discarded and the > differentiation of social movements from other forms of collective behaviorclearly worked out before the topic developed into a self-contained field. >
A new approach to social movements emerged in the wake of the turbulent > 1960s: whereas students of collective behavior dwelt on grievances, > beliefs (with overtones of irrationality), and generally on psychosocial > dimensions, the so-called ‘resource mobilization’ theory emphasized > organization, interests, and the rationality of participants and it played > a great part in stressing the political context and relevance of social > movements. Now the keynote of the times seems to lie in systematic attempts > at multidimensional synthesis integrating mobilizing organizations, > political opportunities, and ‘framing’ processes: although articulating > distinctive dimensions with one another is not an easy task, the hoped-for > synthesis seems to be under way. > Article Out?line > > - 1. From the Formulation of the Idea to the Development of a > Self-contained Field<http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B0080430767019240#sec1> > - 2. New Emphases in Theory and Research<http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B0080430767019240#sec2> > - 3. Contemporary Advances and Issues<http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B0080430767019240#sec3> > - *See also*:<http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B0080430767019240#sec4> > - Bibliography<http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B0080430767019240#bibl001> > >