Constructing Ungovernability: Popular Insurgency in Oaxaca, Mexico
Committee ChairMoore, Sarah
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis thesis examines recent events in Oaxaca, Mexico that demonstrate the continued relevance of the spatiality of resistance for understanding social movement activism and alternative political projects. Arising out of a violent confrontation between state police and the striking teachers union, the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca created spaces of autonomy and resistance that challenged the legitimacy of the state. The fluid movement between a politics of demand, in which social actors force changes in the state apparatus, and a politics of the act, in which movements construct new forms of social relations in their own sites of activism, represents the dual nature of practices that attempt to alter spaces of resistance while at the same time negotiating with broader social structures. The movement in Oaxaca is an example of the possibilities of political projects that recognize the need to move beyond mere resistance to form creative alternatives.