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Bridging global divides? Strategic framing and solidarity in transnational social movement organizations

Smith, J (2002) Bridging global divides? Strategic framing and solidarity in transnational social movement organizations. International Sociology, 17 (4). ISSN 0268-5809

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A growing body of research has revealed a rapid expansion in transnational organizing and activism, but we know relatively little about the qualitative changes these transnational ties represent. Using surveys of transnational social movement organizations (TSMOs) and additional case study material, this paper examines the extent to which these organizations have been able to articulate strategic frames that motivate global level organizing and collective action. The analysis also investigates how inequities between the global North and South affect TSMO solidarity. Key findings are that, while TSMOs have helped expand routine communications among geographically dispersed memberships, there is also evidence that they have developed new skills for managing the differences that characterize such memberships. But gaps between Northern and Southern members persist, particularly regarding groups' abilities to relate local concerns to global level campaigns. Another concern is that, while TSMOs help integrate new groups into global political processes, expanding participation in global activism may roster even greater diversity and conflict among social change groups working in global arenas. Transnational groups have been better at cultivating shared understandings of the problems they address than at building consensus around a shared response to these problems.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Smith, Jjgsmith@pitt.eduJGSMITH0000-0002-4808-0391
Date: 1 January 2002
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Journal or Publication Title: International Sociology
Volume: 17
Number: 4
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1177/0268580902017004003
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Sociology
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0268-5809
Article Type: Review
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2014 22:16
Last Modified: 05 Jun 2020 22:55


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