Scientific article
Open access

The Study of the Consequences of Armed Groups: Lessons from the social movement literature

Published inMobilization, vol. 17, no. 1, p. 85-98
Publication date2012

Despite the development of the political violence and terrorism literature, which has moved strongly forward in the past decade, scientific works on the consequences of armed groups are still rare. This article encourages cross-fertilization between the sparse studies of the consequences of political violence and the growing body of research on how social movements matter. First, we show the variety of potential outcomes of armed groups' violent repertoires. We then review works on the consequences of social movements and highlight lessons for the study of armed groups. Specifically, we urge scholars to look for the interplay of internal and external factors in studying the impact of armed groups. We call for a comparative focus that dwells less on conditions and more on the processes and mechanisms affecting the impact of political violence. At the same time, we acknowledge that the literature on political violence and terrorism can inform social movement scholarship. In particular, students of social movements should pay more attention to the potential economic consequences of protest activities, the international factors constraining their impact, and the life-course patterns of movements' targets.

Citation (ISO format)
BOSI, Lorenzo, GIUGNI, Marco. The Study of the Consequences of Armed Groups: Lessons from the social movement literature. In: Mobilization, 2012, vol. 17, n° 1, p. 85–98.
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Article (Published version)
  • PID : unige:86065
ISSN of the journal1086-671X

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