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The movements against Franco in Barcelona at the end of the dictatorship: Proposal for an analytical framework for social movements

florian Musil
University of Vienna
florian Musil
University of Vienna
Open Panel

Abstract

As a PhD-candidate at the Doctoral College "European Historical Dictatorship and Transformation Research" at the University of Vienna, I am examining in my dissertation the movements against Franco in Barcelona at the end of the dictatorship. While historical studies on the social movements in Franco’s Spain so far mainly consist of purely narrative accounts, I broaden this fairly narrow perspective by applying a new analytical framework to the study of social movements. In order to do so, I combined four of the most important sociological approaches in this field of research: Resource Mobilization (RM), Political Opportunity Structure (POS), New Social Movement (NSM) and the approach of Collective Action Frames. By choosing the case study of Barcelona, the aim of the combination of these approaches is twofold: Firstly, I want to contribute to the general understanding of the development and importance of social movements in Spain before and during the transition to democracy from a sociological perspective. Secondly, I will try to prove the central hypothesis of my PhD-project, which is that the Spanish transition to democracy was not a change "from above" but a clear socio-political change which originated "from below". Following the categorization of social change as developed by Piotr Sztompka, I therefore assume that political reform in Spain was a result of the pressure by the mobilized masses. As concrete examples of protest movements in Barcelona I will analyse student movements, neighbourhood associations, nationalist and Catholic reformist movements, worker’s unions and the networks formed by associations of the free professions such as artists, architects, lawyers and journalists.