Memory in action : mediatised public memory and the symbolic construction of conflict in student movements
Title: Memory in action : mediatised public memory and the symbolic construction of conflict in student movements
Author: ZAMPONI, Lorenzo
Citation: Florence : European University Institute, 2015
Series/Number: EUI PhD theses; Department of Political and Social Sciences
Cultural factors shape the symbolic environment in which contentious politics take place. Among these factors, collective memories are particularly relevant: they can help collective action by providing symbolic material from the past, but at the same time they can constrain people's ability to mobilise by imposing proscriptions and prescriptions. In my research I analyse the relationship between social movements and collective memories: how do social movement participate in the building of public memory? And how does public memory, and in particular the media representation of a contentious past, influence the social construction of identity in the contemporary movements? To answer these questions I focus on the student movements in Italy and Spain, analysing the content and format of media sources in order to draw a map of the different narrative representations of a contentious past, while I use qualitative interviews to investigate their influence on contemporary mobilisations. In particular, I focus on the evolution of the representation of specific events in the Italian and Spanish student movements of the 1960s and 1970s in the different public fields, identifying the role of terrorism and political transitions in shaping in the present the publicly discussed image of the past. The thesis draws on a qualitative content analysis of media material, tracing the phases of the commemoration, putting it in historical context, and attempting to reconstruct the different mechanisms of contentious remembrance. Furthermore, I refer to interviews conducted with contemporary student activists in order to assess the relationship between the public memory of a contentious past and the strategic choices of contemporary movements.
LC Subject Heading: Student movements -- Italy -- History -- 20th century; Student movements -- Spain -- History -- 20th century; Collective memory -- Political aspects
Defence date: 14 July 2015; Examining Board: Professor Donatella Della Porta, EUI and Scuola Normale Superiore (Supervisor); Professor William A. Gamson, Boston College; Professor Ron Eyerman, Yale University; Professor Hanspeter Kriesi, EUI.
Type of Access: embargoedAccess