Rowman & Littlefield Publishers / Rowman & Littlefield International
Trim: 6 x 8¾
978-1-78660-781-2 • Hardback • June 2018 • $100.00 • (£77.00)
978-1-78660-782-9 • Paperback • June 2018 • $32.00 • (£25.00)
978-1-78660-783-6 • eBook • June 2018 • $30.00 • (£22.99)
Laurence Cox is one of Europe’s leading social movement researchers, Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the National University of Ireland Maynooth and Associate Researcher at the Collège d’Etudes Mondiales, Paris. He has published widely on different aspects of social movements, including We Make Our Own History: Marxism and Social Movements in the Twilight of Neoliberalism, Voices of 1968: Documents from the Global North, Understanding European Movements, Marxism and Social Movements and Silence Would Be Treason: Last Writings of Ken Saro-Wiwa. Cox cofounded and coedits the activist/academic social movements journal Interface. He has been involved in many different kinds of movement since the 1980s, including ecological, international solidarity, human rights and organising against repression, antiwar, community activism, radical media, self-organised spaces, alternative education and the alter-globalisation ‘movement of movements’.
Introduction; 1. We Need Movements; 2. Movements Made the World We Live In; 3. The Social Movement as a Whole; 4. The Philosophers Have Only Interpreted The World; 5. Movements and Intellectual Activity; Conclusion; Resources; Notes
This is the book we all were waiting for! Laurence Cox is an experienced scholar-activist, who writes in a concise, clever and accessible style. Cox argues that social movements are part of everyday life and help to shape the world but we don’t notice. They also escape the social scientist's analysis. In this intervention, Cox makes us aware of what social movements are and are not, what is their relation with society as a whole, with institutional politics, with intellectuals and with the Left.
The book is a must for both those who want to know more about social movements, and those who teach and learn political sociology and social movement studies.
— Ana Cecilia Dinerstein, author of The Politics of Autonomy in Latin America
Why Social Movements Matter reminds us how the struggles of past generations have shaped our world. The accessible style draws us effortlessly into rigorous reflection on the tensions between movements and political institutions, the meaning of ‘the left’ today, and the interplay between collective agency and social structures. Never ducking the challenges involved, Cox inspires us towards the building of counter-power and the creative potential that lies in “learning from each other’s struggles”.
— Gee McKeown, Activist Trainer, Ulex Project
Laurence Cox has been an innovating force in social movements studies for more than two decades - relentlessly developing perspectives that speak to the knowledge interests of activists, rather than to narrow scholastic concerns. His keen insights into how social movements make and change our worlds are condensed in a clear and compelling form in this gem of a book, which will be essential reading for anyone wanting to know why social movements matter.
— Alf Gunvald Nilsen, author of Adivasis and the State
Why Social Movements Matter is a must-read for anyone curious about this topic. This concise book is a gem. Highly accessible in style, it is a lucid and engaged introduction into the diverse movements that shape society in often crucial ways and that generate hopes for the future.
— Markus S. Schulz, Vice-President for Research, International Sociological Association (ISA)
The timing of Laurence Cox’s new book couldn’t be better. It’s urgent that activists, organizers and scholars better understand why, when and how social movements win, and why they fail. Too little attention is focused on social movements in an era of bold right-wing attacks on much of what earlier social movements achieved.
— Jane McAlevey, US Labor Organizer
The book is written in an engaging way and will also trigger the interest of the general publics
interested in social movements and progressive politics.
— New Books Network