Social Change In The Civil Rights Movement

1680 Words7 Pages
Change is constant, but a very broad concept. It’s altered and affected by cultural and geographical elements and most notably the realisation of self-values and beliefs. It’s complex, yet highly significant, but what is social change and how can it be achieved?

There are countless definitions when it comes to social change and all include changes in social behaviour and interactions, human relationships, and attitudes. According to Jones (1962), "Social change is best described as variations in, or modifications of, any aspect of social processes, social patterns, social interaction or social organisation." M.D.Jenson, similarly refers to social change as “modification in ways of doing and thinking of people.”
Giddens (1989) states that
…show more content…
According to Della Porta and Diani, (2006), a social movement has four features:

1) social ferment: preliminary and no organisation, a sense of discontent. An example of this stage would be the early 1950’s for the Civil Rights Movement;

2) popular excitement: clearly defined sense of discontent. Leadership is visible and an organized movement is formed;

3) formalization: higher levels of organisation and clear goals and strategies. A few wins may have also occurred at this stage. Political power is great and allies in powerful positions;
4) institutionalization: goals are adopted by the mainstream and there is no longer a need for a movement.

Charles Tilly, (as quoted in Giugni, 1999, p. 25) argues that “the employment of invariant models…assumes a political world in which whole structures and sequences repeat themselves time after time in essentially the same form. That would be a convenient world for theorists, but it does not
…show more content…
The American Red Cross collects $7 million dollars in 24 hours by allowing people to make $10 donations using their cell phones.” This is a great indication of evolution and refinement, associated with social change. It also highlights the growth of a new actor – the passive actor, one that may not take to the streets, but will sign a petition and will contribute financially as a means of
Open Document