Humour and Social Protest

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Marjolein t'Hart, Dennis Bos
Cambridge University Press, 2007 - History - 305 pages
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Combining developments in the field of social movement theory regarding framing, collective identity, and emotions with insights from humourology, the seventeen essays in this book show the power of humour in framing social and political protest across a wide range of historical and spatial settings. The authors explore under what conditions laughter can serve the cause of the protesters; how humour has strengthened social protest; to what degree humour has been an effective tool for contentious social movements; and how humour can further the development of the collective identity of a social movement. The essays deal with a broad variety of historical and spatial settings, in quite different political structures, from open democratic societies to harsh repressive regimes, from the Zapatistas in Mexico to Vietnamese garment workers, from sixteenth-century Augsburg to Madrid and Stockholm in the 1990s.

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About the author (2007)

Marjolein 't Hart (1955) graduated cum laude in Economic and Social History (MA) at the University of Groningen (Netherlands) in 1981. Her MA thesis dealt with Irish returnee emigrants in the nineteenth century. She occupied positions at various universities (Groningen, Leiden, Rotterdam, Free University of Amsterdam) and in various disciplines (history, sociology, political sciences). In 1989 she obtained her PhD degree in History at the University of Leiden with a thesis on warfare, politics and finance during the Dutch Revolt, which studied the rise of the fiscal-military state of the Netherlands in comparative perspective, supervised by Prof. Charles Tilly (New York) and Prof. Wim Blockmans (Leiden). She was a visiting scholar at Trinity College Dublin, a Fellow of the New School for Social Research at New York and a Fellow of the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies in Wassenaar. She participated in several international round-table conferences (among others of the European Science Foundation and of the Renaissance Trust). Since 1990, she teaches Economic and Social History at the University of Amsterdam, for the last couple of years as Associate Professor. She studies in particular early modern Dutch and European history and has published numerous articles in the field of social history.

Dennis Bos (1969) studied history and received a Ph.D. at the University of Amsterdam, where he wrote a dissertation on the history of the early socialist movement in Amsterdam in the second half of the nineteenth century. He worked as a post-doc researcher at the University of Groningen before transferring to Leiden in 2005. His current research deals with the politics of remembrance and analyses the influence of the Paris Commune of 1871 and its memory within the international socialist, communist and anarchist movement during the nineteenth and early twentieth century.

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