Book Review: Betsy Leondar-Wright: Missing Class: How Seeing Class Cultures Can Strengthen Social Movement Groups

80140100646770LCold weather getting you down? Why not curl up by the fire with a good book?

Betsy Leondar-Wright : Missing Class: How Seeing Class Cultures Can Strengthen Social Movement Groups. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University/ILR Press, 2014. 288 pp. $21.95, paperback.

Read the review by Fabio Rojas of Indiana University Bloomington from the OnlineFirst section of Administrative Science Quarterly.

Social class has always been an important element in research on social movements and their organizations. Much of it ASQ_v59n4_Dec2014_cover.inddstems from Marx, of course, but also from later authors such as Alberto Melucci, Claus Offe, and Kathleen Blee who examined the ways that social class shapes how people pursue political goals. This recent book is an examination of how social class shapes activism. Using data from two years of field work and dozens of interviews, Leondar-Wright shows how class differences guide activists as they work together.

This book has many virtues. For example, it presents a typology of progressive groups that captures the major streams of North American progressivism, including its most radical elements, such as anarchists. The numerous illuminating examples of people employing class-based rhetoric in their meetings is another strength. The book’s greatest virtue is that it makes a strong case that class cultures do create substantial barriers among activists and can undermine their groups’ efficacy. Anyone working with people of varying class backgrounds will appreciate the material presented in this book.

Read the rest of the review from Administrative Science Quarterly for free by clicking here. Want to have all the latest news, reviews and research from Administrative Science Quarterly sent directly to your inbox? Click here to sign up for e-alerts!

This entry was posted in Book Review, Change, Communication, Cultural Research, Groups, Motivation, Organizational Behavior, Politics, Social Impact, Social Issues and tagged , , , , by Cynthia Nalevanko, Editor, SAGE Publishing. Bookmark the permalink.

About Cynthia Nalevanko, Editor, SAGE Publishing

Founded in 1965, SAGE is the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. Known for our commitment to quality and innovation, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students across a broad range of subject areas. With over 1500 employees globally from principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, Washington DC, and Melburne, our publishing program includes more than 1000 journals and over 900 books, reference works and databases a year in business, humanities, social sciences, science, technology and medicine. Believing passionately that engaged scholarship lies at the heart of any healthy society and that education is intrinsically valuable, SAGE aims to be the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. This means playing a creative role in society by disseminating teaching and research on a global scale, the cornerstones of which are good, long-term relationships, a focus on our markets, and an ability to combine quality and innovation. Leading authors, editors and societies should feel that SAGE is their natural home: we believe in meeting the range of their needs, and in publishing the best of their work. We are a growing company, and our financial success comes from thinking creatively about our markets and actively responding to the needs of our customers.

One thought on “Book Review: Betsy Leondar-Wright: Missing Class: How Seeing Class Cultures Can Strengthen Social Movement Groups

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