Desperately Seeking Politics: Political Attitudes of Participants in Three Demonstrations for Worker’s Rights in Italy
Donatella Della Porta, Herbert Reiter, Massimiliano Andretta, Stefania Milan, Federico M. Rossi
This article can be read here.
Social conflicts tend to take different forms. This article compares three demonstrations on issues of social justice in Italy: a traditional Labor Day demonstration, a march supporting a general strike called by the largest trade union CGIL (Confederazione Generale Italiana del Lavoro, Italian General Confederation of Labour), and the EuroMayDay parade, representing a “new” type of movement. Focusing on conceptions of democracy among activists, the article stresses that the economic crisis is a crisis of representative democracy as well. Protestors on social justice and labor rights expressed extremely low levels of trust in government, parliament, and political parties; the lowest levels were found among younger participants. At the same time, this lack of trust is coupled with confidence in the capacity of the citizens— especially if organized at the international level—to take the world into their hands. Despite high levels of distrust, demonstrators believe that one must strengthen all levels of government to be able to address social inequality—politics must regain control over the market.
Della Porta, D., Reiter, Andretta, S. Milan, F. Rossi (2013). “Desperately seeking politics: Political attitudes of participants in three demonstrations for social justice in Italy”, Mobilization, 17(3), pp. 349–361.