Ruth Sanz Sabido & Stuart Price, De Montfort University
The MeCCSA Social Movements Network was recently established in order to create opportunities to discuss the role of media, film, communication and cultural studies in the analysis of social movements. The purpose of this initiative is to improve the ability of researchers to engage with activists and groups, and to understand the ways in which social movements are mediated and the means through which they mediate themselves.
The proposal to create a Social Movements Network emerged during the 2013 MeCCSA Annual Conference in Derry, based on discussions with delegates interested in the study of social movements. Our goal is to share information amongst academics, researchers and activists, in order to develop productive links between academia and the movements themselves.
The main objectives of the Social Movements Network are to: encourage the critical study of social movements; to promote the work of those academics, researchers and practitioners concerned with any aspect of the study, nationally and internationally; to develop links and dialogues with and between social movements, protest groups and other related networks; to facilitate research; and to create spaces for reflecting upon the ways in which academic research can contribute to these movements.
The creation of this network is a timely intervention in contemporary media and political theory: besides work on current developments, it also intends to cover more established political movements and historical events.
To launch the Network, a conference will be held at De Montfort University in November 2013 (more details to follow shortly). This event will examine whether political theories derived from Marxism can provide useful analyses of current protests and their mediation. It will also be an opportunity to discuss further initiatives and projects regarding social movements, including events that the Network can organise or sponsor.
The members of the MeCCSA Social Movements Network committee are: Ruth Sanz Sabido and Stuart Price (De Montfort University), Rosalind Brunt and Rinella Cere (Sheffield Hallam University), John Downey (Loughborough University), Anna Feigenbaum (Bournemouth University) and Arne Hintz (Cardiff University).
Get in touch!
We are already planning events for 2014, but we would like to hear from anyone interested in contributing to the organisation of symposia or conferences. We want the Network to be as participatory as possible so we hope to develop dialogues with other bodies and research groups. We are currently setting up a mailing list. If you would like to contact us in the meantime, please email Ruth Sanz at firstname.lastname@example.org.