By Peyman Vahabzadeh
Analyzes new social events and their ramifications for social and political conception.
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Additional info for Articulated Experiences: Toward a Radical Phenomenology of Contemporary Social Movements
The trace of a modality of thinking bound by an adamant search for an ultimate referentiality that can secure theoretical postulates in the writings of Touraine and Melucci reduces the new movements to expressions of the postindustrial society (and the new modernity in the later Touraine). Whether the postindustrial society is a notion that can be posited without having recourse to the new movements to justify its ultimate presence remains highly debatable in both Touraine and Melucci. 59 Clearly, Touraine conceives of a mysterious fundamental connection between new social movements and programmed society.
As identity-claims, therefore, new social movements give rise to modernization, institutional change, cultural innovation, and the selection of the new elite. They translate action into symbolic challenges that defy and disturb the dominant codes, exposing their irrationality (especially that of the new forms of technocratic power). Indeed, the new movements emerge as signs—that is, as forms (of movement) that become the message. 124 But unlike Touraine, Melucci rejects the idea that the new movements replace the older ones as the subject of social change.
Regardless of the possibility of ever entering conflictual situations, they nonetheless remain actors. ”129 They are by nature in conflict with the current institutional or technocratic power. The identity of actors, therefore, comes from a potential to carry out an assigned or perceived form of action, regardless of the fact that action, thereby identity, can arise solely in conflictual situation. Identity precedes conflictual situations because it is a product of a fundamental social constitution.
Articulated Experiences: Toward a Radical Phenomenology of Contemporary Social Movements by Peyman Vahabzadeh