This week’s readings focused on how social movements are able to take shape in terms of finding vulnerability of the government or organizational structure. We learned that a movement relies heavily on the organization and recruitment strategies because these strategies vary from one movement to another. An argument can be made that both vulnerability of the government and the structuring of an organization are key in order to execute a successful movement.
Kurtzman focused on four possible weaknesses within a government that provide hypothetical or perceived opportunities for movements to succeed but didn’t actually paralyze the Iranian state. The movement gathered its strength because of the perceived strength of the opposition. Even people who didn’t align in beliefs came together because they thought that they had to. But, “there was a mismatch between the structure of political opportunities and popular perceptions of political opportunities.”(164)
The most important point that Snow et al. made in relation to my argument is that the recruitment tactics that an organization uses must match what the organization requires because they feed off of each other. They found that people may be recruited simply in the absence of a countervailing network. I really thought that this part was particularly confusing because it questions how recruiting methods can even be successful at all because there are so many different elements of the process.
My question for the class this week: How important do you think that it is to recruit people who genuinely believe in the movement? Is it a question in quality or quantity?