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Audio for this talk: https://archive.org/details/NonHegemonic
Social movements are typically considered either incremental or antisystemic, or in other words, reformist or revolutionary. Both of these approaches are focused on the state or other significant power-holders. However, a third approach to social change does not attempt to change society as a whole, but instead imagines an alternative society, and begins to experiment with those alternatives. We look at examples from Australia to think through some of the key issues surrounding non-hegemonic activism. In particular, we use cases from animal advocacy and indigenous activism to contextualise the concept of non-hegemonic activism in Australia. Vegan activism and self-determination activism are both attempts to create change without directly challenging power structures – but by their very existence they do question whether mainstream society is, in fact, successful. These broad movements contain elements of both state-centric and non-hegemonic activism, and we unpack the experimental utopias that activists are attempting to bring about.
This talk was recorded at The Australian Sociological Association 2016 conference. You can hear more talks from this conference here: https://soundcloud.com/australian-sociology-tasa