The Political Power of Protest: Minority Activism and Shifts in Public Policy

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Cambridge University Press, Apr 15, 2013 - Political Science - 191 pages
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This book demonstrates the direct influence that political protest behavior has on Congress, the presidency, and the Supreme Court, illustrating that protest is a form of democratic responsiveness that government officials have used, and continue to draw on, to implement federal policies. Focusing on racial and ethnic minority concerns, this book shows that the context of political protest has served as a signal for political preferences. As pro-minority rights behavior grew and anti-minority rights actions declined, politicians learned from minority protest and responded when they felt emboldened by stronger informational cues stemming from citizens' behavior, a theory referred to as the "information continuum." Given the influence that minority protest actions have wielded over national government, the book offers a powerful implication. Although the shift from protest to politics as a political strategy has opened the door for institutionalized political opportunity, racial and ethnic minorities have neglected a powerful tool to illustrate the inequalities that exist in contemporary society.

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The Influence
Measuring Information in Minority Protest
The Impact
PostRacial Society
Appendix A Defining Minority Political Protest
Time Series Methods

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About the author (2013)

Daniel Gillion is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania. His research interests focus on racial and ethnic politics, political behavior, public opinion and the American presidency. Gillion's research has been published in several journals and books, including Oxford Handbook of Political Behavior, Electoral Studies and The Journal of Politics. Before joining the University of Pennsylvania's faculty, he was the distinguished provost fellow in the political science department at the University of Rochester, where he completed his PhD. He currently serves as the Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Scholar and the Ford Foundation Fellow at Harvard University.