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Movement Territories and Logics from Below: The Struggle for Critical Collaboration in El Salvador

Burridge, Daniel (2016) Movement Territories and Logics from Below: The Struggle for Critical Collaboration in El Salvador. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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In this thesis, I use ethnographic research methods to interrogate the understandings, practices, and demands of four distinct social movements on the left in El Salvador's novel political context in which the leftist Frente Farabundo Marti para la Liberacion Nacional (FMLN) has been in control of the executive branch of government since 2009. I deploy the analytic frame of the “movement territory” to reflect the localized and territorially contingent understandings of my research participants, as well as to capture the similarities and differences across geographically, socially, and ideologically diverse spaces in which movements act. I find that Salvadoran movements have employed diverse modes of interaction with FMLN-controlled state institutions that can be divided into three tendencies: emergence, pacification, and critical collaboration. In broad strokes however, I contend that movements on the left have been weakened in the post-war period by a neoliberal state logic that contradicts a community-based logic from below based on historical movement traditions (typically associated with, and coordinated by the FMLN) of community organizing, social solidarity, and militant public mobilization. Neoliberal state logic has also led to epidemic social violence, massive emigration, and the “NGOization” of social struggle, factors which have further weakened movements on the left. Finally, the FMLN‟s assumption of state power itself, and its instrumental use of social movements, has served to relegate movements to a marginal status in the current context.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Burridge, Danieldpb36@pitt.eduDPB36
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairMarkoff, Johnjm2@pitt.eduJM2
Committee MemberSmith, Jackiejgsmith@pitt.eduJGSMITH
Committee MemberBamyeh, Mohammedmab205@pitt.eduMAB205
Date: 21 June 2016
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 4 May 2015
Approval Date: 21 June 2016
Submission Date: 5 January 2016
Access Restriction: 3 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 3 years.
Number of Pages: 85
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: El Salvador, Social Movements, Latin American Studies, Community Studies, State and Civil Society, Neoliberalism, Movement Territories, Critical Collaboration
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2016 16:01
Last Modified: 21 Jun 2019 05:15


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