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Incorporating Space and Play in the Study of Contemporary Contentious Politics: The Case of the Critical Mass Movement RK

Kanemoto, Ray (2015) Incorporating Space and Play in the Study of Contemporary Contentious Politics: The Case of the Critical Mass Movement RK. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Processes of globalization are unevenly developing with economic activities further concentrated in urban spaces. This increased urbanization has exacerbated global issues and significantly altered the way of life for many people. It has also changed the composition of cities, in some cases created global cities, which have opened up new spaces and possibilities for contention as the local and global levels are intimately connected. Urban social movement actors’ activities are informed through this spatial understanding. Thus, research on contentious politics can benefit from observing how spatialities affect contentious action. Spatial perspectives illuminate the connections between daily life experiences and broader social, political, and economic processes. Urban spaces reveal the continuities between culture and structure, both cultural and structural approaches can benefit by incorporating spatial analyses for studying contemporary contentious politics. One of the tactics employed by activists is their use of play to reclaim space, inscribing it with new values and meanings to challenge hegemonic groups. Investigating the intersection of play and space can enhance our understandings on the development and trajectories of contentious action. This thesis examines the Critical Mass movement as a case study to illustrate how space and play are a part of an integral process through which these actors perceive, shape, and participate in contentious politics.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Kanemoto, Rayrak109@pitt.eduRAK1090000-0003-1139-2989
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairStaggenborg, Suzannesuzstagg@pitt.eduSUZSTAGG
Committee MemberDuck, Waverlywod1@pitt.eduWOD1
Committee MemberSmith, Jackiejgsmith@pitt.eduJGSMITH
Date: 31 May 2015
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 13 April 2015
Approval Date: 31 May 2015
Submission Date: 17 April 2015
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 52
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Sociology
Degree: MA - Master of Arts
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: space, play, critical mass, contentious politics, social movements
Date Deposited: 31 May 2015 18:57
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 14:27


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