Paying attention to contemporary popular uprisings allows us to take the pulse of the street; homing in on people’s grievances and desires, how they conflict and temporarily converge, and how they counter or correspond with formal discourse. Popular mobilisation is a political process whose primary locus is outside formal spaces: it is often low level – even underground – and only sometimes tumultuous. Contentious politics builds on the streets, in markets and along corridors; in sitting rooms, meeting halls and religious spaces; it is online and offline; and it is local and global. A mix of ideas and action, it is fermented in exchanges of talk and image and sharpened by arguments, demonstrations and public performances.
Scott-Villiers, P. (2016). Power, politics and popular mobilisation. GSDRC Professional Development Reading Pack no. 40. Birmingham, UK: University of Birmingham 3pp