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Now available with free access from our current issue, Urban activism in Eastern Europe and China! Rethinking radical activism: Heterogeneity and dynamics of political squatting in Prague after 1989, by Arnošt Novák & Bob Kuřík

This article can be found in the current issue of the Journal of Urban Affairs regarding Urban activism in Eastern Europe and China: Socio-spatial structures and scales of contention.

This article currently has free access and is available to read and download.

Rethinking radical activism: Heterogeneity and dynamics of political squatting in Prague after 1989, by Arnošt Novák & Bob Kuřík

Abstract

Using empirical material relating to political squatting in Prague, the objective of this article is to problematize, complement, and extend the radical-activist type within the political-activism typology for postsocialist countries developed by Ondřej Císař. The text analyzes 3 crucial political squats that emerged after 1989: Ladronka, Milada, and Klinika. It aims to document that the radical activism presented by Císař is not homogeneous but heterogeneous and dynamic. Contrary to Císař’s quantitative approach based on protest data analysis, this article is grounded in qualitative and ethnographic research strategies that intend to bring a different perspective to radical activism. From a broader perspective, the text strives to complement canonical theories of social movements (the theory of political opportunity structure) with new theories (prefiguration and politics of act), both of which lie outside the main canon. It is precisely this combination that enables us to better understand the heterogeneity and dynamics of political squatting in Prague.

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