Prof. Donatella della Porta's lecture "Deconstructing generations in movements" 24.5.2019 at 10-12 a.m.

Professor Donatella della Porta (Scuola Normale Superiore, Florence) gives a lecture “Deconstructing generations in movements: evidences from anti-austerity protests in Europe” on 24th of May at the University of Jyväskylä. The lecture will be held on Friday the 24th of May 2019 at Agora Alfa 10-12 a.m.

Donatella della Porta’s lecture “Deconstructing generations in movements: evidences from anti-austerity protests in Europe” addresses the self-understanding of young activists in anti-austerity protests in European countries. Building on a theoretical framework that aims at bridging youth studies and social movement studies, it first introduces some main research questions such as: What leads a significant number of young people in times of more or less severe crisis to engage in collective initiatives, rather than to remain passive? What are the forms of social commitment that critical young people choose to use, in particular during periods of crisis? Which meanings are attached to these forms of social engagement? What kinds of resources are available to young people for social mobilization? And to what extent do they vary across different degrees of socioeconomic crisis, governmental constellation, and type of conflict, thereby shaping individual-level forms and levels of social participation? To what extent do differences in the impact of the crisis on national contexts, and related political transformations, result in differences in young people’s social engagement in terms of motivations and forms? After presenting the theoretical model and the research design, the lecture summarizes some results across three main aspects: the meaning of generations in social movements, the self-definition of Millennials, as well as some characteristics of their mobilizations in terms of organizational structures, repertories of action, and collective framing. Using the concept of generations in a critical way, the lecture will deconstruct it by looking at the meaning given to generations by movement activists, to their self-perception in terms of generational identification, as well as their taste in terms of contentious frames and practices. 

Donatella Della Porta is professor of political science, dean of the Department of Political and Social Sciences and director of the PhD program in Political Science and Sociology at the Scuola Normale Superiore in Florence, where she also leads the Center on Social Movement Studies (Cosmos). 
Among the main topics of her research are social movements, political violence, terrorism, corruption, the police and protest policing. She has directed a major ERC project, Mobilizing for Democracy, on civil society participation in democratization processes in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Latin America. In 2011, she was the recipient of the Mattei Dogan Prize for distinguished achievements in the field of political sociology. She is Honorary Doctor of the universities of Lausanne, Bucharest and Goteborg. She is the author or editor of 90 books, 135 journal articles and 135 contributions in edited volumes. Among her recent publications are: Legacies and Memories in Movements (Oxford University Press, 2018); Sessantotto. Passato e presente dell’anno ribelle (Fertrinelli, 2018); Contentious moves (Palgrave 2017), Global Diffusion of Protest (Amsterdam University Press, 2017), Late Neoliberalism and its Discontents (Palgrave, 2017); Movement Parties in Times of Austerity (Polity 2017), Where did the Revolution go? (Cambridge University Press, 2016); Social Movements in Times of Austerity (Polity 2015). 

Donatella della Porta will be conferred as the University of Jyväskylä’s Honorary Doctor in the conferment of degrees ceremony on 25th of May 2019.