The Project on Contentious Politics (PCP) at George Mason University is an interdisciplinary group of scholars dedicated to understanding different forms of contentious political movements.
These episodes range from strikes, movements for civil rights, human rights violations, stolen elections, people’s power movements, coup attempts, ethnic riots, civil wars, revolutions, and genocides. Each entails actors, processes, or goals that are “extra-systemic,” that is, outside of the realm of every-day politics. Each requires some form of coordinated effort and mobilization.
Contentious politics is studied by many disciplines, using varied theoretical frames of reference. We argue that similar mechanisms and processes operate across this range of events, and that opportunity structures and established repertoires shape the form and intensity of the contention.
The PCP organizes workshops, hosts lectures and discussions, and seeks to advance the work of scholars and graduate students working on these questions. Inspired by the Workshop on Contentious Politics organized by the late Charles Tilly at Columbia University, we hope to create a venue for scholarship and collaboration.