This article addresses how and why the popular mobilization in Syria took off in the "peripheral" Dar'a region. Accordingly, it focuses on the province's dense social networks involving clans, labor migration, cross-border movements, and crime. It argues that Dar'a's social networks were important early in Syrian protest for several reasons: (1) They served as sites where nonconforming views on Ba'ath subordination could develop and be shared. (2) They contributed to the transfer, circulation, and interpretation of information whereby the shifting opportunities emanating from events in the region were recognized and the regime's threats were framed in ways that compelled people to act. (3) They provided an important sense of solidarity and presented the background against which recruitment for mobilization took place. (4) Finally, they provided key skills and resources for mobilization to be effective. Thanks to their miscibility, Dar'a's dense social networks substituted for the role attributed to brokers in social movement theory. They effectively connected individuals of different origins and strata in an otherwise prohibitive authoritarian context.
Skip Nav Destination
Research Article| December 20 2012
Collective Action and Mobilization in Dar'a: An Anatomy of the Onset of Syria's Popular Uprising
Department of War Studies, King's College, London
Search for other works by this author on:
Mobilization: An International Quarterly (2012) 17 (4): 419–434.
Reinoud Leenders; Collective Action and Mobilization in Dar'a: An Anatomy of the Onset of Syria's Popular Uprising. Mobilization: An International Quarterly 1 December 2012; 17 (4): 419–434. doi: https://doi.org/10.17813/maiq.17.4.gj8km668p18611hj
Download citation file:
Don't already have an account? Register
You could not be signed in. Please check your email address / username and password and try again.
Could not validate captcha. Please try again.
Sign in via your InstitutionSign in via your Institution
1 Mobilization: An International Quarterly single article purchase Token
CHANGING THE NARRATIVE
Francesca Polletta, Edwin Amenta