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Till det lokalas försvar: Civilsamhället i den urbana periferin
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
2011 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
In Defense of the Local : Civil Society in the Urban Periphery (English)
Abstract [en]

The current global restructuring processes are usually described in terms of increased integration and, concurrently, greater fragmentation among different regions and scales. How these parallel outcomes are reflected in the civic sphere, largely for those mostly affected, i.e. the urban grassroots, is the focus of this study. The theoretical objective is to develop an alternative way of conceptualizing engagement in the civil sphere in marginalized urban neighborhoods; this is presented in the form of a complementary analytical model named: the three pillars of simultaneousness. The empirical objective is to analyze the organization of civil society in two neighborhoods: Rinkeby and Tensta, both categorized as being on the lowest rung of the urban hierarchy in Stockholm, Sweden. The empirical analysis is based on three types of data: interviews, documentation and participant observation. The analysis reveals that these neighborhoods are well-organized and that it is the small, localized self-help organizations, conceptualized as the organizations of everyday life, which engage the urban grassroots. The configuration of the associations and the close face-to-face interactions, combined with traditional membership, imply that this form of activism cannot be understood without taking into account the specific national historic context. In the Swedish urban periphery, the reinvention of the Swedish social mass movement tradition is central when discussing both the constraints to and opportunities for suburban organizing. The strong movement tradition, together with political and financial incentives, has facilitated the development of a vigorous community life. At the same time, these prerequisites have undermined the political and critical potential of the urban grassroots.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Lund: Arkiv , 2011. , 208 p.
Keyword [en]
Civil Society, Urban Periphery, Everyday Life, Rinkeby, Tensta
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-57442ISBN: 978-91-7924-236-7OAI: diva2:415937
Public defence
2011-06-10, William-Olssonsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 14, Stockholm, 10:00 (Swedish)
Available from: 2011-05-16 Created: 2011-05-09 Last updated: 2011-05-10Bibliographically approved

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