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Collective Action and the Civil Rights Movement : American Politics and Political Economy Series - Dennis Chong

Collective Action and the Civil Rights Movement

American Politics and Political Economy Series

Paperback Published: 1st January 1991
ISBN: 9780226104416
Number Of Pages: 276

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Collective Action and the Civil Rights Movement is a theoretical study of the dynamics of public-spirited collective action as well as a substantial study of the American civil rights movement and the local and national politics that surrounded it. In this major historical application of rational choice theory to a social movement, Dennis Chong reexamines the problem of organizing collective action by focusing on the social, psychological, and moral incentives of political activism that are often neglected by rational choice theorists. Using game theoretic concepts as well as dynamic models, he explores how rational individuals decide to participate in social movements and how these individual decisions translate into collective outcomes. In addition to applying formal modeling to the puzzling and important social phenomenon of collective action, he offers persuasive insights into the political and psychological dynamics that provoke and sustain public activism. This remarkably accessible study demonstrates how the civil rights movement succeeded against difficult odds by mobilizing community resources, resisting powerful opposition, and winning concessions from the government.

List of Figures
Public-Spirited Collective Action A collective action problem Collective action as a prisoner's dilemma Synopsis
All-Or-Nothing Public Goods How boycotts can be sustained Nonviolent protest The public relations (PR) game On police brutality Summary
Selective Social Incentives and Reputational Concerns Social incentives The iterated prisoner's dilemma Small-scale and large-scale conventions Reputational concerns On reputation and cooperation Reputation and civil rights activism Commitments in Selma Private vs. public preferences Sympathy and moral concerns Summary
Narrowly Rational Expressive Benefits The benefits of participation Self-serving expressive benefits Perceptions of costs and benefits More on the perception of costs and benefits: "As if" preferences Correlated costs and benefits
Creating the Motivation to Participate in Collective Action Socially instrumental value Fulfilling obligations Successful collective action
Coordination Problems in Assurance Games Coordination vs. prisoner's dilemma problems Lynch mobs Graphs Coordination among political activists Tipping phenomena Real assurance games Political entrepreneurs Greensboro Data on the student sit-in participants Refusing to leave well enough alone Summary
A Formal Model of Collective Action Some properties of the supply-and-demand model Analysis of the supply-and-demand model The time path of the system Summary of deductions from the supply-and-demand model Analyzing the origins of the civil rights movement Changes in the strength of the opposition Coordinating preferences: Leadership and organizations Changes in government responsiveness
Strategies of Collective Action The Albany and Birmingham campaigns Modeling the Albany and Birmingham campaigns
The Rise and Fall of Collective Action Changes in the assurance game Satisfaction and the exhaustion of ideas Disappointment and backlash The decline of the civil rights movement The dynamics of rise and decline The time path of political mobilization Solution of the general equation Stability conditions of the model The path of the civil rights movement
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780226104416
ISBN-10: 0226104419
Series: American Politics and Political Economy Series
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 276
Published: 1st January 1991
Publisher: The University of Chicago Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.88  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.45

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