New Social Movements in Colombia: A Critical Case Study of FENSAUGRO

Yannik Boserup

Studenteropgave: Masterprojekt


This paper aims to investigate several different approaches to the study of social movements. Historically, social movements have been studied from a “Western” perspective, and from a predominantly domestic point of view. Some theories, such as Political Process Theory and Resource Mobilization, have put focus on externalities as the dominant denominator for social movement success while the more recent New Social Movement paradigm focuses on the internal dynamics of social movements as the most important factor to investigate movement activities and understand the collective connection of social movement members. Several authors within theoretical fields such as Post-Colonialism, World Systems Theory, and Orientalism have criticized the “Westernized” worldview that dominates social movement theory. The critique rests in the West’s inability to encompass and grasp cultural context that are different from the Western one.. The objective of the thesis is to analyze a Latin American social movement with the paradigms presented above with respect to their fight against the neoliberal order and the growing stigmatization of campesinos in Colombia. Through tests of hypotheses build around the three paradigms, the thesis explores the viability of theoretical frameworks, and ultimately finds that Resource Mobilization, Political Process Theory, and New Social Movements do not fully manage to encompass FENSUAGRO, their activities or the collective identity as a campesino class. Thus the conclusion of the thesis rests in the importance of local knowledge to studying region-specific phenomena because social movements form different struggles and structures that are not necessarily similar from region to region. Furthermore, the conclusion consists of the argument that class is still relevant to social movements. Partly because the evidence from FENSUAGRO would suggest so, and partly because the transnational regime of neoliberalism has been argued to produce a new working class that is being exploited by multinational corporations and supranational agencies such as the WTO, the IMF, and the World Bank.

UddannelserGlobal Studies, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat
Antal sider79
VejledereAngela Bourne


  • Sociale Bevægelser
  • Latinamerika
  • Neoliberalisme