Whither the Global Justice Movement?
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The large anti-WTO protests in Seattle in 1999 announced the anti-globalisation, or global justice, movement's dramatic entry to the global politics of dissent. Subsequent anti-summit protests over the next few years also attracted considerable support. However, by as early as 2001, especially after one of the largest protests in Genoa saw a protestor killed, nervous questions were beginning to be asked about both the viability and longevity of this form of oppositional politics. Certainly in 2006, the global justice movement is generally viewed as, at best, considerably diminished or, at worst, a spent force. But this paper argues that to evaluate the 'movement' in these terms is to misrepresent and misunderstand it. Rather than a singular movement, the global justice movement is in reality a 'movement of movements' - a diverse collection of independent, autonomous and local groups who have come together for some big global protests but who retain localised and distinct social change commitments. These localised commitments do not necessarily mirror the visual feast of large global rallies and hence attract limited media attention. Even so, the 'movement' continues to retain its momentum through the global justice principles it helped launch - principles that now increasingly cohere in the anti-war movement.
Sociology for a mobile world TASA 2006
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