Breakdown Theories of Collective Action Author(s): Bert Useem Source: Annual Review of Sociology, Vol. 24 (1998), pp.

215-238 Published by: Annual Reviews Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/223480 Accessed: 05/06/2009 04:21
Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use, available at http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp. JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unless you have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of articles, and you may use content in the JSTOR archive only for your personal, non-commercial use. Please contact the publisher regarding any further use of this work. Publisher contact information may be obtained at http://www.jstor.org/action/showPublisher?publisherCode=annrevs. Each copy of any part of a JSTOR transmission must contain the same copyright notice that appears on the screen or printed page of such transmission. JSTOR is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1995 to build trusted digital archives for scholarship. We work with the scholarly community to preserve their work and the materials they rely upon, and to build a common research platform that promotes the discovery and use of these resources. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org.

Annual Reviews is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Annual Review of Sociology.

http://www.jstor.org

Annu. Rev. Sociol. 1998. 24.215-38 Copyright? 1998 by AnnualReviews.All rights reserved

BREAKDOWNTHEORIESOF ACTION COLLECTIVE
Bert Useem
New Mexico Departmentof Sociology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, 87131 KEYWORDS:riots,collective violence, disorganization, solidarity, aggression

ABSTRACT Historically, breakdowntheory dominatedthe sociological study of collective action. In the 1970s, this theory was found to be increasingly unable to account for contemporaneousevents and newly discovered historical facts. Resource mobilization theory displaced breakdowntheory as the dominant paradigm.Yet the evidence againstbreakdowntheoryis weak once a distinction is made between routineandnonroutinecollective action. Severalrecent contributionsaffirmthe explanatorypower of breakdowntheory for nonroutine collective action. Breakdowntheory also contributesto an understanding of the use of governmentalforce againstprotestand of the moralfeatures of collective action. Breakdownand resource mobilization theories explain different types of phenomena, and both are needed to help account for the full range of forms of collective action.

INTRODUCTION
Breakdown theory is the classic sociological explanation of contentious forms of collective action such as riots, rebellion, and civil violence. The crux of the theory is that these sorts of events occur when the mechanisms of social control lose their restraining power. Breakdown theory was expressed in the mainstream of sociology by its standard-bearers: Comte through Durkheim, Gustave LeBon, and Gabriel Tarde in the European tradition; Robert Park and his student Herbert Blumer, Talcott Parsons and his student Neil Smelser in the American tradition. 215 0360-0572/98/0815-0215/$08.00

when the horizontalties are weak or nonexistent. protest. He arguedthatin a segmentedsocial structure(thatis. pp. Charles Tilly (1978. outburstsdevoid of leadership. 120) classified collectivities to greatlyemphasize organizational a community:whetherthey areorganizedalong traditional/communal lines. Resourcemobilization(RM) theoristsposited thatcollective action flows not frombreakdownbut fromgroupsvying for political position and advantages. Resource mobilizationtheory gained quick acceptance. A new theory emergedto explain the anomalies. ties within p. RM RESEARCH: THE NEGATION OF THE NEGATION? Few resource mobilization theorists have backed away from the claim that breakdowntheoryhas been falsified by the evidence. However. one of the architectsof resource mobilization theory. p.."statedWilliam Gamson (1990 [1975]. nor for newly collected historical data.however.. The thesis of this essay is thatbreakdowntheory and RM theory analyze different phenomena.. As an example.and. provides solidarity. collectiveviolence. Anthony Oberschall(1973.and explicitly articulatedgoals" (Oberschall 1973. 122-23).216 USEEM Breakdown theory's dominance ended during the 1970s.becoming by 1980 the dominantparadigm(Zald 1992. p. portrayedthis as an escape clause and implied that Oberschallhad not emphasized strongly enough the influence of prior organization. family instability. Researchers claimed that breakdowntheory could not account for societal events as they were then unfolding-the social movements and collective violence of the 1960s and 1970s. The key researchsaid to . 83). Breakdowntheoryfell so farthata study could be criticized by merely pointing out that it left variationto be explained by breakdownprocesses.Tilly would later affirm that condithenecessary thaninsufficient rather integration. 139). and that the sociological terrain needs to be opened up for breakdowntheorists' insights.and disruptivemigration. p. or have little or no organizationof any kind. Rebellion is "simply politics by other means.organization. rebellions.but violent. 327). the lower ordersarenot effectively integratedwith the elite). Breakdown (malintegration)refers to weak networks and a diffuse collective identity often created by chronic unemployment.. As used by Tilly and others.and tionsof collectiveaction. solidarityrefers to dense social networks and a strong collective identity. collective action may arise under all three forms of horizontal organization. suggests a need to reconsiderRM theorists' monopoly over the field. Recent scholarship. interests of shared related formsof actionresultfromrational (1984: pursuit 51-52).we should expect "short-lived.

Yet when Tilly and associates measuredthe incidence of collective action. and the findings cannotbe takento refutethe [breakdown] perspective. (b) studies of the organizationalbases of social movements. Shorter & Tilly (1974) sought to explain the timing of strikes in France over the period 1865-1965. collective violence. the routine/nonroutinedistinction was lost.g. Breakdowntheory posits that only nonroutine collective action flows out of breakdownprocesses. 14-15.andwreckingcrews arepaid to do physically similar things. the refutationof the breakdowntheory is not one of them. 306) point out that strikesbecame legal in Francein 1865 andthuspresumablywere more akinto routinecollective than nonroutineaction. Piven & Cloward(1992. both moral and physical.historical.Yet pace Tilly. Rather. Tilly's group undertooka dauntingtask. that society normally makes strongest and is most concerned about.(c) analyses of the urbandisordersof the 1960s."This criticism has gone unrebuttedand is.g. Shorter& Tilly made no additional effort to distinstrike activity. The difference. 23) recognizes thatthe heartof breakdown theory is a distinction between "routine collective action" (e.it is that participantsmust free themselves from the restraints on behavior. To back up for a moment. rebellion. Piven & Cloward(1992. Few would challenge the enormouscontributions(methodological. 306) maintainthatthe flaw is fatal: "Takenas a whole. in his theoreticalwork. againstwhich they soughtto test breakdownandRM models. riots). including those by Lodhi & Tilly (1973) and Snyder & Tilly (1972). In one study. They countedthe incidence of collective action in severalEuropeancountriesover a 100-yearperiod.routinecollective action is said to arise from and reinforce solidarity.Boxers. to expand on this point. Tilly (1978. this corpus of researchdoes not answer the question of the conditions underwhich ordinarypeople do in fact resortto violence or defiance. The same problem guish between "routine"and "nonroutine" occurs in the otherkey studies claiming to disprovebreakdowntheory. is not so much that participantsin riots and rebellion injurepeople and destroy property. electoral rallies. p. armies. pp. peaceful protest) and "nonroutine collective" action (e. p. and theoretical)made by this impressivebody of research.BREAKDOWN THEORIES 217 refutebreakdowntheory can divided into (a) the work by CharlesTilly andhis collaboratorson collective action in a Europeansetting. . That Tilly's researchis not a crucial test of breakdowntheory has been argued by FrancesPiven andRichardCloward(1992). fair. in my opinion. and (d) work on the connection between collective action and crime. Collective Action In European Setting The work of Charles Tilly and his colleagues has been pivotal in the swing away from breakdowntheory.

such as those over abortion(Luker 1984. help make possible the hardwork often needed to sustaincollective action.though. (b) person-daysinjails for each year. and social bonds. Snyder& Tilly note thatthe threemeasures of repression are less than ideal.I focus on one study because it raises a theoreticalissue discussed below. The finding of a positive association between organizationand collective actionhas been replicatedin dozens of studiesand is irrefutable-at least in regardto certainforms of collective action.the other two are so distant from governmentrepressionas to be irrelevant.If so. in turn.facilitates collective action.in a given year. These forms include (a) communitybased protest movements. One could argue (althoughSnyder& Tilly do not) that excess arrestsis the only direct measureof governmentalrepression.such as pooled labor and leadership. and extends the interpersonalbonds throughwhich recruitment takes place.and (c) "excess arrests. it schools participantsin civic cooperation and public mindedness. each presenting "some difficulties" (1972. public spiritedness. the one for person-daysinjails is also in the predicteddirectionbut weak. includingfor ordinarycrime. and the one for excess arrestsis in the opposite of the predicteddirectionand weak.218 USEEM the empirical case in favor of resource mobilization as a reFurthermore.The point is not trivial. given the impact of the researchon the field."a five-year lagged variablemeasuringwhether. In building the RM model. 527-28). pp. the results seem to suggest not only thatrepressiondoes not work. The point here is the tenuous nature of evidence assembled by the Tilly groupwith regardto the causes of nonroutinecollective action. Organization provides resources. Organization also permitsthe "bloc"mobilizationof preexisting groups directly into movements. there were more arreststhan would otherwise be expected from the numberof collective action participantsin thatyear and the overall patternof arrest/participants for the entire 131-yearperiod. SecondaryGroupsand Social Movements RM theoristsarguethatpreexistingorganization. Resources. placement for breakdowntheory is also problematic. To test this hypothesis. In fairness. The regressioncoefficient for the nationalbudget is in the predicteddirection.but thatit may slightly increase collective action. measuring the "bulk" of the government. they regressed the number of collective action participantsfor each year in Francebetween 1830 and 1960 on three separateindicatorsof repression:(a) size of the national budget. Snyder & Tilly (1972) argue that high levels of governmental repression should increasethe cost of collective action and thus reducethe likelihood that groups will be able to mobilize and make demands. Staggen- .both formaland informal.

such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (McCarthy et al 1988. Eric Hirsch (1990) tested breakdown and resource mobilization theory against data on student involvement in a 1985 anti-apartheid protestmovement at ColumbiaUniversity. such as the US civil rights movement (McAdam 1986.) Other collective action noted above just as clearly belongs to the routine category. looks a lot like the other pluralist interest groups that routinely vie for political influence. propertytaxes (Lo 1990). Indeed. and "nonrouWhile no one has been able to define exactly what "routine" tine"mean. such as the belief that divestmentwould influence the South African government.Five of the ten measured eithergeneralideological orientationor attitudesspecific to the situationitself.the students'defianttactics-they blockadedthe administration building for three weeks demandingthat the University sell its stock in companies doing business in SouthAfrica-suggest nonroutinecollective action. the typical MADD activist was 41 years of age. MADD's tactics include public and youth education. p. assisting victims of drunkdrivers.(This evidence is reviewed in the next section. the riots that occurred in US cities in the 1960s were nonroutine. held a high-statusjob.the position is damaged. None of these five variables appears to have a direct bearing on the . far from the sort of setting or populationthat breakdowntheoristshave in mind. Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Weed 1987).The evidence bearsthis out. married. less educatedresidents. Morris 1984). derived from a survey of undergraduHirschregresseda measure ates. lobbying for tougher laws against drunkdriving. On the one hand. of protestparticipationon ten independentvariables. for example.and urging police to beef up their enforcementefforts. seem to supporta middle-case interpretation. Yet this researchcontradicts breakdowntheory only if the collective action being studiedfalls into the nonroutine category. widespreadviolence. FrankWeed (1987.They entailed massive looting. some cases are easily classified. these were studentsat one of the country's elite universities. and was involved in one or more other communityorganizations.had attended college. based on a 1985 survey of local chapterofficers. If the evidence on these disturbancesruns againstbreakdowntheory. 264-65) reportsthat. Breakdownand RM theorists alike would anticipatethat MADD would be a productof something otherthan social breakdown. On the otherhand.BREAKDOWN THEORIES 219 borg 1991). For example. and school busing to achieve racialintegration (Useem 1980). John McCarthyand colleagues (1988) found that counties with more affluent and highly educatedresidentswere more likely to have MADD chaptersthan counties with less affluent. By almost anyone's standard. (b) elite-supportedprotest movements. There are also hard cases. Hirsch's quantitativedata. and social movements employing disciplined civil disobedience. and directdefiance of ordersby law enforcement agencies to disperse.

the breakdownposition is damaged. None of the five breakdown/RM variables has significant regression coefficients. All five of the generalvariableshave a significant impacton participation. STUDIES USING INDIVIDUAL-LEVEL DATA The most important individuallevel data were collected in connection with the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (NACCD 1968a. The Campbell/Schuman (NACCD 1968b. In sum. is borne out by the evidence on the urbanriots of the 1960s (1975.220 USEEM breakdownand RM positions. RevisionistStudiesof UrbanRiots of the 1960s Resource mobilization theorists commonly assert that the same forces that generatesocial movements are also responsiblefor the outbreakof urbancollective violence. studentprotestorswere neithermore nor less likely thanother studentsto be a memberof a campuspolitical action organization. or a memberof the freshmanclass. marginal.b). we should rarely find uprooted. p. and a dummy variable for freshman status.information. They include membershipin campus political action organizations. 290) state that"nomatterwhere we look. But that does not exhaustthe question of what conditionsgeneratenonroutine collective action. resource mobilization theorists have demonstratedthat prior organizationhas a greatdeal to do with the ability of a groupto act.Some that disstudies explainedriot participation by determiningthe characteristics that had riots cities studies from nonrioters. 12) survey obtaineddatafrom 2800 African Americans in 15 cities. disorganized people heavily involved in collective action. The Tillys (1975. support RM position. p. If this assessment holds up. Intuitivelyit makes sense thatroutinesocial movementsdrawon the resourcesembeddedin their communities such as trust. 291-94). Other rioters compared tinguished to those that did not.they continue. together explaining 59% of the variance. The other five independentvariables do. p. (c) police recordsof individuals arrestedduringthe riots in a numberof cities. too for the theory." This expectation. 251) argues. p. The data sources included:(a) a survey conductedin the first threemonths of 1968 in 15 cities underthe direction of Angus CampbellandHowardSchuman. Researchon the urbanriots of the 1960s took one of two approaches.any othertype of campusorganization. While too few respondentsadmittedto .and skills in civic participation. If the resultscan be interpreted as failing to as the breakdown Hirsch so (1990.(b) surveys conductedin NewarkandDetroitaftermajorriots in those cities in 1967. In other words.membershipin other types of campus organizations.

The Detroit sample were interviewedtwo weeks aftera majorriot in thatcity. Skolnick & Fyfe 1993. From these data. If suchmeasures as beingmarried.with very mixed attitudesand demographiccharacteristic. He found that "violent protestors"were a "hybrid" group. 362-363).and to be relatively young (Miller et al 1976. 361). Miller distinguishedamong four groups:apathetics. 76). 361). In contrast.22% of the 16-19-year olds who had unskilled occupations were rioters.therewere only 27 riotersinterviewed. for the Newark sample. Second.nonviolent protestors. p.and the riot prone. in an intactfamily. p. Fifty-four percent of the rioters.comparedto the nonviolent protestors. . the questionnairedid include a numberof items concerningattitudestowardrioting and othertypes of collective action.g. the tables have small N's: 154 and 189 for the Detroit and Newarksamples.. p. 71% of the respondentsat least 44 years of age and in the highest occupationalcategorywere protestors. to be distributedinto the employed or unemployed cells. the Newark respondents (but not the Detroit respondents) were asked if they had been unemployed for at least a month during the previous year. For this reason. p.respectively. to be unmarried. Forthe Detroitsample. 54).andeducation taining upper rungsof occupation. violence-prone protestors.tended to have relatively low levels of educationand income.andatbeingreared therelatively ladincome. The results of the surveys conducted of residents in Detroit and Newark yielded results less favorable to breakdowntheory. compared to 37% of the nonrioters. the Newark sample about six months after the riot there.p. the National Advisory Commission reportedthat "thereare no substantialdifferences in unemployment between the riotersand the noninvolved"(NACCD 1968a. p. While this finding continues to be widely cited as evidence against breakdown theory (e. it should be regardedcautiously. dercanbejustifiably considered as measures of socialintegration thenit is clearthatrioters. Abraham Miller and colleagues (1976) have reanalyzed these data in a way that is particularlyuseful for presentpurposes. 75). Miller concludes. Miller focused on two "pure"groups: nonviolent protestors(seemingly akin to actors engaged in routinecollective action) and the riot prone (seemingly akin to actors engaged in nonroutinecollective action). For example. The data indicate that riot-pronerespondents. These findings are consistentwith a breakdownexplanationof nonroutinecollective action. First. 84 rioterswere distributedto the two cells. to be socialized in a broken home.BREAKDOWN THEORIES221 riot participationto allow for analysis (1968b.. but only 15%of this group were protestors(Miller et al 1976.but less than 3% of the same group were rioters.emerged fromtheleastsociallyintegrated andlowerelementsof the community (Milleret al 1976.

75)-about a third of both samples. 247) also reportsdatafromnine cities on the proportionof riot arresteeswho had been previously arrested. This conclusion has also been widely cited by resourcemobiliationtheorists as part of the readily available evidence againstbreakdowntheory.but it might still be able to explain why riots occurredthere and not elsewhere.this would suggest thatpriorcriminality could not predict which inner-city residents rioted (because there is little variation)."contributed way to STUDIES USING CITY-LEVELDATA . the stigma of arrestlosses its inhibitingeffect.Detroit and Newark were communities in which work had already begun to "disappear" (Wilson 1996).and (b) location outside of the South.It does. New York) to 100% in two cities (New BrunswickandElizabeth. education. it is not clear why this is not reflected in rates of currentunemployment. in turn. p. comparedto communities with full employment. One could arguethatin areasin which the arrestratesare as high as 90%. even if unemployed individuals were no more likely to riot thanwere employed individuals. a difference that is statistically significant.This proportion ranged from 39% (Buffalo. The Commission(NACCD 1968b.including unemployment. Third. p. Spilermanargues that the factor most responsible for riots. From this and other considerations.was the "widespread availabilityof television and its networknews Television structure" broughtscenes of the civil rights move(1976. these findings can be reconciledwith breakdowntheory. One could argue that these high levels of unemployment made rioting more likely in those communities. 237). All other communitycharacteristics.p.222 USEEM stated that they had been so unemployed.the Commission concludes that "thecriminalelement is not over-represented among the rioters"(1968b. Spilermanfound that only two city-level characteristics were significantly related to riot occurrenceand intensity: (a) the numericalsize of the African-Americanpopulation. Still.This community-wideeffect of unemploymentshould show up in city-level data. 237). If the rioters were more likely than nonriotersto have been unemployed in the previous year. pointing out that"50 to 90 percentof the Negro males in the urban ghettos have criminal records"(1968b. The most influentialresearchusing the city as the unit of observation was reported in a series of papers by Seymour Spilerman(1970. as we see in the next section. in a fundamental ments into "everyghetto. p. 1971.The Commissiondiscountsthe significance of these findings. 1976).If thereis any realismto the upper-endfigure of 90%. had no independenteffect. overshadowing any effects of community conditions.and income. This remainsspeculative. includingfor the criminal act of rioting."This. the overall levels of unemployment were "extremely high" (NACCD 1968a. p. Apparently.New Jersey). 790).

Piven & Cloward(1992. p."These two studies. If black solidaritywas increasingin this period.especially under conditions of high unemployment.althoughhe cautions that furtherresearchis needed to determine"exactly how unemployment contributesto civil unrest. Finally.Additional evidence on these points is needed. or instead.help shift the burdenback to the critics of breakdowntheory.BREAKDOWN THEORIES223 the creationof a black solidaritythat would transcendthe boundariesof community. Robert Putnam (1995) argues that television viewing (which is concentratedamong the less educatedsectors) fragmentscommunitiesand reduces solidarity. with regardto the region effect. thatis." The theoreticalsignificance of these findings for breakdowntheory."at least underconditions of heightenedinter-minority competition. 312) arguethatrioting may have occurred outside the South because "northernghettos were less cohesive than southernblack communities. especially in the absence of an independentmeasureof solidarity. comparedto smallerones. His argumentis plausible. One strategyto test this link has been to examine whetherrates of collective action and rates of crime tracktogetherover time. 110) reportedthat the numberof nonwhites unemployedin a given city had a strongeffect on riot rates."This does not show up in the analysis because "cohesiveness" is not measureddirectly by Spilerman. 622).breakdowntheoryhas hypothesizedlinks between riots/rebellion and other signs of breakdown. Crime. Even if we were to assume that television was a key independentvariable. 946) found that "cities with higherrates of unemploymentfor blacks had significantly higherrates of unrest.such as crime.In anotherstudy. Spilerman's key empirical finding-that community conditions were irrelevant to the outbreak of violence-has been challenged. First.An indirectmeasureis the crime rate. Susan Olzak and Suzanne Shanahan(1996. In one study. Daniel Myers (1997.The same point could be made about the effect of black community size: large black communities. the causal mechanism may differ from the one Spilerman identifies. may have had weaker social controls. p. but not self-evident. The Tillys (1975) found that crime and collective ac- . as well as the findings themselves. and Age Fromits founding. relying on data that are more complete thanwere availableto Spilerman. Yet the crime rate for African Americans increased rapidly in this period (LaFree & Drass 1996. to creategreatersolidarityamong inner-cityAfricanAmericans.thereshouldhave been a corresponding decline in the crime rate. p. Second. remainopen to challenge. Collective Action. p. Spilermanadduces no evidence that television had the impact he said it had.Perhapsthat effect was presenttoo.

p. Also. Fromits multipledatasources.Formost crimes.requiresorganizational resources. in the Detroit survey noted above. The premisehere is thatlike phenomenacorrelatein like ways.but not crime. we would anticipatethatage would correlatewith riotingin a similarway but not with routinecollective action.crimeratesand collective action were negatively related.New South Wales. which ostensibly became tighter in the post-1974 period. A study of the riotersarrestedin the 1992 Los Angeles riots found thattheir age distributionwas almost identicalto the age distributionof those arrestedin the 1965 Los Angeles riot (Petersilia& Abrahamse1994. . and Germanyfrom 1830 to 1930.Ted Gurr(1976) establishedthatcrime waves tendedto occur during periods of high levels of civil strife in the four areas he studied (London. afterthat. 74).Italy. because LaFree& Drass do not show there was an actual decrease of resources. Moreover. and Calcutta). Gottfredson & Hirschi 1990. must be measuredindependentlyof the incidence of collective action. 61% of the self-reportedrioterswere between the ages of 15 and 24.the authorsmaintain. This is what we find. In a more recent study. For example. rates of commission peak in the late teen years and then fall to half theirpeak level by the mid-twenties (Blumstein 1995. They foundthatcrimeratesandcollective action rose in tandemfrom 1955 to the early 1970s but. It is ancientcriminologicalwisdom (supportedby a largebody of evidence) thatyoung people commit crime at relativelyhigh rates. p. 140-144). 849) arguethatthe firsthalf of the time series supports breakdowntheory: Crime and collective action seem to "springin part from the same social forces.224 USEEM tion variedindependentlyin France. and 86%were between 15 and 35. This suggests that the impact of age on rioting is a life-cycle effect (thatis. Gary LaFreeand Kriss Drass (1997) examined the covariationbetween rates of crime and collective action in the United States over the period 1955 to 1991. p. though. is more consistentwith RM theory. Another strategywould be to examine the patternof correlationsbetween (a) crime and collective action (routineand nonroutine)and (b) otherrelevant variablessuch as age.They arguethatthe two ratesdepartedbecause collective action. p.but not routinecollective action."Resources."of course. rioting is somethingthatpeople do when they areyoung but not older) ratherthan a period or generationaleffect. Stockholm. If crime sharespropertieswith rioting. 123-126). LaFree& Drass (1997. In contrast. beefed-up law enforcementhad a strongereffect on riots thanon crime." The second half of the time series. Additional work needs to be done on the first point.this correlationappearsto be stable over time. the 1968 NationalAdvisory Commissionon Civil Disorders concluded that rioterswere predominantly"late teenagers or young adults" (NACCD 1968b.

Along the same lines. one not sharedby routine collective action. for example) but have nothing to do with crime.they were infused with deadly intent. mosques. age increases the likelihood of voting (Wolfinger & Rosenstone 1980. but its form of unrestrainedviolence.BREAKDOWN THEORIES225 In contrast. Useem & Kimball 1989. In Hyderabad. The most fully developed of these. In both studies. Jack Goldstone (1980) found thatprotestgroupsbeing active duringperiods of social crisis or breakdown is a betterpredictorof success than their organizationalstrengthor tactics. which in turnare broadly consistent with a breakdownmodel. for the latter. p. RECENTADVANCES The resource mobilization consensus notwithstanding. and shrines and the burningof houses. was victory with honor and defeat with humiliationanddeep emotionalwounds. Sociologist Anthony Oberschall (1997) analyzedthe collective violence thatfollowed the breakupof the Yugoslav state. Useem et al 1996).on both sides. the point is that crime and nonroutinecollective action seem to share a similar place in the life-cycle.the dislocationsproducedby the Great Depression. Still. Here I highlight several additionalrecent contributions. Finally. the conflict entailed the expulsion of a quarterof the population from their . andmuch lower for the group 17-29 (Verba& Nie 1972.the Hindu-Muslim riots took anythingbut a ritualized form. p. somewhat lower for those over 50. the uprooting migration and modernization that followed World War II. And. many phenomenaare correlatedwith age (playing volleyball. argues that the leading social movements of the 1930s and the 1960s were productsof social breakdown:for the former. Of course. controlling for additionaldemographicvariables.a number of recent studies have contributedto the development of the breakdownposition.a similar patternof correlationsis not found between age and participationin routine forms of collective action such as voluntaryorganizations and voting. Psychoanalyst Sudhir Kakar (1996a) examined collective violence between Muslims and Hindus in the Indian city of Hyderabad. In the formerYugoslavia. 47). Useem and colleagues link breakdownin institutionaleffectiveness to the spreadof the 1992 riot in Los Angeles (Useem 1997) and to the occurrenceof the US prison riots (Useem 1985. the explanadumis not ethnic conflict per se. Rather. Spiral of Ethnic Conflict Two recent studies of ethnic collective violence come to similar conclusions. The vocabulary. 181). Affiliation with voluntary organizationsis greatest among the group between the ages of 30 and 49. by FrancesPiven and RichardCloward(1977). accompanied by the destruction of temples.

Second. In explaining Hindu-Muslim violence.mass executions and rape. On a theoreticallevel.These groups. Kakar (1996a.appearto have been closer to Fukuyama's"criminalgangs"thanthe sorts of community groups and networksof solidaritythat RM theoristshave in mind. social decomposition was a precursorto the solidaristic groupsthatcame to dominatethe situation.structural change.Breakdown of the social orderwas part of the strategyof conflict escalation.moreover. the com- . In both case studies." In Bosnia. torture. in this case. But Oberschallshows that. fueled by widespreadlooting. 15) makes a relevantpoint: "It is as if there is a natural. polarization. Both Kakarand Oberschallarguethatextremecollective violence emerges out of a spiralof conflict. Kakar finds that communalismbecomes imprintedduring the same developmental stages in which a child acquires a sense of self.The place. For ethnic/religiousconflict within limits to turnto murderousethnic conflict without limits.226 USEEM homelands ("ethnic cleansing"). extremist leaders formed militias. Drawing on the work of Erik Erickson. breakdownelements permittedthe polarization to begin and to continue. Muchdependson the kinds of groupsthat arebreakingdown andthe kindsthatare forming. As the economy furtherdeterioratedwith the start of the war. in which a sense of"we-ness" is replacedby "we are. a criminal economy took its place. In the void. and the sniper-killingsof civilians. Oberschall'sanalysis is instructivefor two reasons. First. targeted moderates for refusing to go along with them. Riots originate not only in the minds of men and women. timing. p. and seizure of propertyfrom those expelled from their homes and homeland. and recruitedmembers from large pools of unskilled men. human agents were causing the breakdown.universal humanimpulse toward sociability. accordingto Kakar. In Oberschall's account. the fall of the Yugoslav state was followed by a disintegrationof the otherinstitutions. which then fed on itself. if blocked from expressing itself throughsocial structures like the family or voluntaryorganizations. At the cognitive level. andmood of these processes arealso important. FrancisFukuyama(1996. Oberschall'sanalysis suggests that the distinctionbetween breakdown and solidarityis too simplistic. which. ransomof capturedcivilians. classic breakdowntheorypicturescollective violence as a by-productof impersonal.includingthe economy.decisively and purposefully.b) distinguishes community identification from communalism. two shifts have to occur. The latter as used in the Indian context refers to a dominating sense of community identification.appearsin the forms like criminal gangs."This exclusive attachment to one's community is accompanied by hostility toward those communities that share a political and geographic space.but early in their childhoods. mutualrecriminations.andultimatelybloody.

Prospecttheorymaintainsthatpeople frametheirdecisions in terms of gains or losses from their status quo or zero point. The synthesis of prospect and culturaltheories is this. as a key source of hateful representationsof the other side. and culturaltheory. The problemwith this explananatureof the riots: people. p. the mobilizationof citizens following the 1979 accident at the Three-MileIslandnuclearpower plant.peasantrebellions.The quotidiannormallykeeps life stable and operatingon an even keel.are experiencedas highly salient deprivations (prospecttheory)." bituatedroutines. The relevantelement of culturaltheory is the the taken-for-granted attitudeof everyday life and haconcept of "quotidian. test) their position with several case studies. 194-196). love for one's group and hatredtoward out-groups must be rekindled from feelings first developed in childhood. tion is that it cannot account for the extraordinary often neighbors. Karkar(1996a. In Hyderabad. Schutz (1962). 21-23. At the affective level. in turn. Social identity comes to dominateif not to displace personal identity. Examples of the quotidian include middle-class people going to work and making mortgagepayments and homeless people making do with a meager but steady supply of provisions.indignation. including work on homeless mobilizationin eight cities. which cause greaterhostility than do wide differences. 43) refers to the preoccupation with minor differences.as developed by Kahneman& Tversky(1979). Kakar's analysis is particularlyinstructivebecause he contrastsit with an explanation more consistent with the resource mobilization position: The Hindu-Muslimriots flowed out of group struggle over territorialcontrol and political power (1996a.and revolt.rarely experiencing shame or guilt for the violence inflicted.THEORIES 227 BREAKDOWN munal identity must take on overwhelming salience in a large numberof people at the same time.Fueled by rumorand stoked by religious extremists. Social breakdown both (a) generateslosses which. and (b) undercutsactors' confidence that their accustomedroutinescan continueto provide a satisfying future(culturaltheory).killing and maiming one another.these fears generateda spiral of attacksand counterattacks.as developed by Bourdieu(1975). and losses loom largerthan correspondinggains. pp. It is this conjunctureof suddenlyimposed deprivationsand an uncertainfuture thatgives rise to anger.an initial attackby one side triggeredfears of groupannihilationin the other. Disruption of Quotidian David Snow and colleagues (1998) have recently advanced a version of the breakdownmodel that incorporatestwo other sets of theoreticalinsights into the model: prospecttheory. and Snow & Benford(1992). . and a prison riot. Snow and colleagues flesh-out (and to a degree. Drawing on psychoanalytictheory.

This refreshinganalysis should open up new avenues of research. indeed especially. As is often the case. These arguments. In this view. a verydifferent anexecutioner. A second issue. 56).indeed. Tilly adds that. person. One issue concernsthe propertiesof governmentalforce againstprotestorsandrioters. setting the stage for rebellion-seems plausible.Tilly used this definition of repressionin his work on European collective action. as a practicalmatter.in turn. 56) policeman.Killingappears performs values. switchfromillegitimate to legitimate if a constitutedauthority in bothcolumns. is merely a "legal device" that authoritiesuse to justify the use of force against assembled citizens. Finally. Tilly seems to discount the possibility that riots are genuinely frightening to the public. p.is discussed in the next section. The key argumentthatthe collapse of everydayroutineschanges the cognitive and affective content of actors' minds. 92-93.permitTilly to define "governmental repression" as any governmental action that raises the "costs" of collective action. 218-229). even if one were to agree thatbreakdowntheory has been an intellectual "straightjacket" (Gamson 1990.p. in regardto governmentaluse of force. and it has been adaptedwidely by othersin the resourcemobilization tradition (Opp & Roehl 1990.228 USEEM In sum. he believes thatthe distinctionbetween legitimateand illegitimate force "shouldnever have entered the world of systematic explanation" (1984.here to incorporate recent advances in phenomenology and cognitive psychology. Tarrow 1994. this impressivepaperby Snow and colleagues demonstrates thatthis need not be the case. 130). McAdam works" 1982.but with them. or a private (1984. Breakdowntheoristsbelieve thatthe distinctionbetween legitimate and illegitimateforce is valid even. Tilly argues. Tilly provides the clearest explication of the logic of the RM position.Thevaluesdepend on whether thekilleris a soldier. p. "repression"is reserved for governmentalaction that violates legal rights and/orpolitical norms.he would call the police if someone stole his wallet. Still. The term "riot" itself. Theverysameacts. As noted earlier. p. GOVERNMENTAL "REPRESSION" The readermight suspectthatthe wedge between breakdownandresourcemobilization theories runs deeperthanthe causes of collective action per se. RM analystsnow routinelyreferto the "repression hypothesis. He challenges the breakdownposition that there exists a meaningful distinctionbetween "legitimate"and "illegitimate"force. if unproven. contrastingmoralsentiments. It shows thatbreakdown theorycan be stretchedin differentdirections. p.The suppositionis the existence of a set of stablepolitical standards (a) againstwhich public officials areheld ac- .

The evidence supportsthis argument. criminologistshave found thathandgunpurchasesand crimeratescovary over time.but its wrongfulness does not rise to the level of a criminalact.or facilitate an equitabledistribution of losses. as if to assume away the possibility that governmentaction against rioters/protestors representsa moral consensus within a community. with some certitude. East and West-is a distinctionbetween criminaland civil law (Cooter 1984. ratherthan criminallaw." Fundamental to virtually all legal systems-moder and premodern. if riots have the effect of generatinghandgunpurchases. While this makes governmentalrepressionhardto isolate and measure.it also argues againstsupposingthatall governmentalaction againstrebellionis repression. in contrast. To illustrate. These argumentsareopen to empiricaltesting.David McDowall and Colin Loftin (1983) found that requests for handgunpermits rose dramaticallyafter major riots in Detroit in the mid-1960s.then it could be reasonablyinferredthat they strike fear into the public. the circumstances in which the government will use force against collective action (Allen 1996.one sortof evidence would be effects of riots on handgunownership.a 50%increase in civil disordersincreasedhandgunpurchasesby 5%. Thus. The concept of a general state of fear and the rights of potentialriot victims provides a normativebasis for governmentaction against rioters.breakdown theorists would insist that government action againstrebellion may involve more thanan attemptto "raiseits costs. From the point of view of breakdowntheory. Robinson 1996).It attemptsto convey society's moral condemnationfor the prohibitedbehavior. RM theoristsuse the vocabularyof civil law. provide a remedy to an injuredparty.as well. One must determine. either to dissuade it.By way of background. The priced behaviormay warrantreproval. Breakdowntheorists would look for variation across situations. While in principle the causal direction could go either way. Civil law "prices"or raises the costs of certainbehavior. . the bulk of evidence supportsthe "fear and loathing"hypothesis: when crime rates rise.By Clotfelter's calculation.THEORIES229 BREAKDOWN countable. (b) from which departuresare exceptional ratherthan routine. cases are easily distinguished:police shooting peaceful protestors(repression)versus police arrestinglooters or even using deadly force when needed to protectan innocentthirdpartyfrom a murderous assault (lawful exercise of state authority). CharlesClotfelter(1981) found the same effect in the six statesthathe studied.entails more thanraisingthe costs of certainbehavior. people buy handgunsout of fear (McDowall 1995). Furthermore. Criminallaw. "repression"cannot be measured by counting the number of protestors arrestedand shot by police. sometimes in the most unequivocal and dramaticmannerpossible: imprisonmentor even death. the existence of a moral consensus and/orlegal justification behind those arrestsand shootings. and (c) that permit citizens to know. At the extremes. Hayek 1944).

This speaks to the variablerole thatcollective actionplays in democraticsocieties. Riot intensityper annumwas recodedto a dummy variable:Each year was coded as one of. the top fifth of the riotintenseyears. It plots handgunproductionfor domestic sales. in turn. ACTION MORAL SENTIMENTSAND COLLECTIVE Breakdownandresourcemobilizationtheoristsalso differ on moralfeaturesof collective action. has two meanings. Ronald Dworkin (1985.Furtherinvestigation suggested that the errorstructurecould be characterizedby a first-orderautoregressive process. and a measure of total riot activity per annum in the United States between 1964 and 1994. Second. 105) argues. Riot activity was measuredby into z-scores the per annumnumberof arrests. Both observationsare confirmedby regression analyses.deaths. per the fear-and-loathinghypothesis.injuries. Useful in describingthese differences is PeterGay's (1993) point that aggression implies "attack"which. these years. homicide rates.the aggressiveness of the 1The data sources for Figure 1 are described in Appendix A.an orchestracan attack a challenging composition. or a university may aggressively pursue a program of equal employmentopportunity.In Gay's account. handgunproductionjumps above what would be anticipatedfromhomicide ratesalone. A year could have a negative intensityscore if it fell below the mean on one or more of these measures. transforming and then summingthose scores for each year. depending on its form.230 USEEM Figure 1 extends these analyses. p.for example.001) and in the predicteddirection.the evidence above suggests the same is not true for urbanriots.seem to correspondto periods in which there are upsurges in rioting. 104-116) has arguedthat civil disobedience has earneda legitimate if informalrole in the US political system. first. or not one of.or a scathing attackby a literarycritic. Few now regret nor condemn the Civil Rights movement and its most celebrated uses of civil disobedience. in which riot intensity and homicide rates in one year were used to predicthandgunproduction in the subsequentyear. Attack may refer to a setting upon anotherin a hostile way.1 A visual inspection of the graph suggests. both increasedhomicides and widespreadrioting appearto strike fear into others at a level sufficient to generategun purchases.days riotedandarsons. in ordinarylanguage. in certainyears. Examples include a criminalattack. p. But attack can also refer to an adaptivemastery:A scientist may attack a puzzling problem of nature.an attackfrom ambushin warfare. that homicide rates and handgun rates track together closely."as Dworkin (1985. . In a subsequentregressionboth coefficients were statisticallysignificant (p < . Results from standard OLS regressionindicated(via the DurbinWatson statistic) significant autocorrelation. In sum. Yet if civil disobedienceis no longer a "frighteningidea in the United States.

p. parryinsults.. or attack.. in this view. I Figure I Homicides. in the form of abusednatives." These events.The disagreement is over the kind of aggression. 0 Han dgunsity 12 5*' 65 70 75 ^. confusion. andassertoneself againstcutthroat Few would challenge thatcollective action is aggression. 2) opens From Mobilization to Revolution by describing an attemptby English villagers in 1765 to pull down a workhouse. as well. Breakdowntheorists are more likely to see collective action as hostile aggression..on the contrary... Tilly makes clear..- 2 . were constructiveaggression.....but it also permitted people to transform and shape their environment in ways unprecedented (1993.it is. CharlesTilly (1978.e 80 85 . 6 1 0' 2 -'u=CD: ? ' .and discardedartisans.both sides "knewwhat they were doing"and "didas best they could. Attack can. bourgeoisie of the nineteenthcentury exacted grievous costs.and riot intensity. new handguns.and he is at pains to point out that the event was "nota in the sense of"frenzy....BREAKDOWNTHEORIES 231 16 - 20 =Riot 0 Q. Collective action is ordinarypeople taking control over their lives. exploited laborers.. They concede that collective action may secure immediate concessions and may even plant the seeds of a new social order. Resource mobilizationtheorists aremainly creatures of the 1960s and 1970s and...>i?.. or wanton destruction" riot". tendto emphasizeaggression's positive dimensions. For example..as such. p. 6). be counteraggression:One can fight back competition.ii. United States.i?*?n 90 95 nl o . 1964-1994. againstbullies...But they are far more ..

in any particularinstance of aggression. 1-8. Wilson (1993. passing motorists were pulled from theirvehicles to be beaten." Indeed. stabbedwith screwdrivers. that their explanationsof their own behavior were mere rationalizations. p. But what targetof aggressionwould agree thatthe blows againstthem arewarranted? Moreover. the riot was drivenby destructiveimpulses. only the most rigid and unreconstructedresource mobilization theoristswould fail to see hostile aggressiveness when. p. Wilson (1993. principles.From this Wilson makes an interestingobservation: Individuals inevitably offer a moral justification whenever their actions. 230) most aboutthe April 1992 riots was thatthe riotersfelt an obligation to justify their behavior.232 USEEM inclined than RM theorists to worry that collective action has another side. or even killed. what struck James Q." But how is one to know if. Collective behavior is behavior. This concern permits James Q.otherswere draggedout andbeatenrepeatedly with chunks of concrete and bricks. to continue with the example. but as the "terribleriots" that "rackedthe city I love. p. One was left dying in the street. duringboth the 1980 Miami riot and 1992 Los Angeles riot. What actuatesaggressorsmay be obscuredby the defensive stratagemsthatPeterGay calls "alibisfor aggression":beliefs. CertainlyKakar's work on Hindu-Muslimviolence suggests that surface discourse may imperfectly reflect underlyingconcerns. p. 48-49) describe Miami's "nightmarish"experience: "Whites were doused with gasoline and set afire in theircars. The problem is that humancomplexity is not suspendedwhen people pour onto the streets. Johnsonet al 1992). Tierney 1994).violate a moralprinciple. by a mean-spiritedrevenge for perceived slights of honorand disrespect. Perhapsalibis for aggression are .and that the firebombsand looting were not warrantedby abuses of the past? Therewere plenty of observerswilling to accept these justifications. and comforting bromides used to rationalize verbal or physical militancy against others (1993.the fact thatthe Los Angeles riotersoffered a moraljustificationfor their action is not informative. a red rose in his mouth. Yet how does Wilson know thatthe rioters'complaintsof injusticeand discriminationwere disingenuous. Portes& Stepick (1993. 35-38). Duringthe April 1992 riots. Koreanbusinesses were targetedfor looting and arson(Ong & Hee 1993.g. Fromthe Korean merchants'point of view. run over by cars. constructiveor destructiveimpulsespredominate? One problemis thatthe answer will depend upon whether one relies on statementsby the aggressor or the partywhose ox is gored. however destructiveandpurely self-interested. maimed. 229-230) to refer to the events in Los Angeles in April 1992 not as a rebellion. at best.who insisted thatthe events were a rebellion andnot a riot (e. and shot. Thus.

Fukuyama(1995.pervasive cynicism. Cover 1983). For studentsof collective behavior.The crowd-out theorist would argue that state intervention benefits. We are farfrom the last chapteron urbanriots.including law. would increase a population's attachmentto society.Possible formulationsinclude these: Social Capital/Breakdown Theory Social capital theorists argue that economic prosperity requires strong nettrustassoworks of cooperationamongpeople andhigh levels of interpersonal ciated with such networks (Coleman 1990. . One concernsthe connection.This lack of cohesion is a legacy of slavery. p. Here the analysis is complicatedby the fact that social capital theorists are divided between those who argue that state intervention crowds out social capital and those who imply a synergistic relationship (Evans 1996).the social capitalperspectiveputs two distinct causal argumentson the agenda. and disaffection that presage urban crime and disturbances. A second key question concerns the connection among state intervention. were an outcome of low levels of social capital in the AfricanAmerican community: a predominance of single-parent families and weak largergroups. case by case.BREAKDOWN THEORIES 233 what Wilson heard expressed by the Los Angeles rioters. Posner 1996). Putnam 1993. FUTUREDIRECTIONS forms To recapitulate. tends to destroy social trust and norms of cooperation (Coleman 1990. 1996) assertsthatUS urbanriots.if any. 295-306. The latterposition is thateffective stateintervention promotes civic engagement and reshapes norms in a positive direction and. might have short-run but long-run costs: a decline of productive cooperation. Sunstein 1996. social capital. The former position is that state intervention. Fukuyamaargues. that high levels of civic engagement nourish state effectiveness (Putnam 1993. The best we can do is carefullytease out the evidence. Fukuyama 1995). Pildes 1996. adding rebellion to the equation is intriguing. Collective action would take primarily"routine"forms ratherthan "nonroutine" forms. While no resolutionto this debate is in sight.betweensocial capitalandrebellion. conversely.when practicedskillfully and strategically.breakdowntheoristsarguethat defiant or "nonroutine" of collective action occur when the mechanismsof social controlfalteror everydayroutinesare disrupted. althoughI know of no evidence thatwould prove this.If this stance is acceptedas plausible. farfrom even knowing what they are about. futurework should identify different ways in which breakdownprocesses may generate collective disorders.both in the 1960s and 1990s.The synergists would arguethatstate intervention. such as the ameliorationof specific grievances. and rebellion.

propriety. the findings would fit nicely with the breakdownposition. ethnic. a culturalcore-is weakened.the world is becoming increasinglydivided along the lines of cultureand thaneconomics or ideology. If this were shown to be true. 1996b) has arguedthat. with the end of the Cold War. For example.234 USEEM Routine-Disorder/Breakdown Theory JamesQ. Huntingtongoes on to predictthat non-Westerncountriesformerlyunited by ideology or historicalcircumstancebut divided by civilization will tend to fall apart with a high potential for collective violence. regardless of racial. and cause crime. one would like to see if Skogan's objective and subjectiveindices of disordercould also be used to predictthe occurrenceof US urbanriots. that urban residents. Accordingly.He shows. Sampson 1995).second. To the extent thatthese routes are taken. In the Western context. fits within the breakdown tradition:NonrouHuntington'sargument squarely tine collective action eruptswhen a mechanismof integration-in this formulation. Wesley Skogan (1990) verified key elements of Wilson's argument. stimulatepeople and commerce to move away. by decay and disintegration. Kelling & Coles 1996.the clash between the religion rather world's seven or eight majorcivilizations will be the basis of the most hostile conflicts.they will requireus to relax the assumptionthatthe nation state is the unit aroundwhich collective action revolves in all cases. disorder.thereis a public space in which his or her sense of safety.and self-worthareeitheraffirmed or jeopardizedby the events and people encountered. public drinking.agree about what constitutes orderand how much there is in their neighborhood. or economic background. routine disorders-vandalism. and corer gangs-corrode communitymorale. Subsequentresearchershave also verified the routine-disordersargument as well as amplified theoreticalaspects of it (Bursik & Grasmick 1993. to distinguish more clearly the causes of routine .Hence.based on datacollected on crime. Clash of Civilizations/Breakdown Theory Samuel Huntington(1996a. countriesthat fall prey to multiculturalism and uncontrolledimmigrationwill a of followed experience disuniting society. Wilson goes on to argue. In sum.graffiti. disorderboth spawns serious crime and plays a key role in neighborhooddecline. and clash-of-civilizationsperspectives may each serve as a launchingpad to rethinkthe sources and dynamicsof collective action. social-capital. Wilson (1968) observedthat.for every person. Wilson's insight and its verificationsuggest the possibility thatroutinedisorders may also contributeto nonroutinecollective action. which pose the greatest risk of escalating into collective violence.andresidents'perceptions of disorder in 40 urbanneighborhoods. first.routine-disorder.

Breakdownprocesses do not destroya communityroot andbranch. efforts to replacebreakdowntheorywith resourcemobilization theory are ill-founded.in some sort of amalgambetween breakdownand RM processes. CONCLUSION Rebellion would be easier to understand.Aki Takeuchiassistedwith the dataanalysis.Also. To be sure. nor is it cynicism. much collective action does involve political contention and constitutespolitics by othermeans.Gregg Lee Carter generouslyprovidedhis dataon US urbanriots. and RichardWood for theirhelpful comments. Ethnicand racialgroupsmay attackone anotherin a spiralof hatredandrevenge. To arguethatall collective action is partandparcel of political struggleis to exaggeratethe centralityof power and imputean ideology of social change where none may exist."as Gamson(1990.BREAKDOWNTHEORIES 235 and nonroutinecollective action. but they can cripplea community'sability to performkey functions. But to breakdowntheorists.Carter.producinga mass of atomizedindividuals. From time to time. much of interestappearsto occur in a middle ground. Anthony Oberschall. Such ruptures are rare. In my view.this does not exhaust the range of possibilities. Each approachdeserves recognition. 133) alleges. vent their rage. In sum. David McDowall helped make availableATF dataon handguns.Both logic and evidence seem to suggest thatthe breakdown and RM theories explain different kinds of collective action. p.But they do happen. or secure materialadvantages.it is a recognitionof the complexity anddiversity of social life. Gary LaFree.our theories of it more parsimonious and powerful.neitheraretheypoliticsby othermeans. John Roberts. collective action appears to serve as the vehicle through which the dispossessed and those detached from and unconcerned about the welfare of society express their hostility. David Snow. The breakdownposition is not an "intellectualweapon"concocted to "discreditmass movements of which one is critical. Appendix A The dataon riot intensity are from three sources:a data set providedby Gregg Lee. coveringthe period 1964 to 1971. breakdowntheory was developed to explain collective action that involves a basic ruptureof the social order. if it flowed out of one condition and towardone purpose:power politics. threemajorindexedpapers(New .While these goals arenot irrational short-term (nothingis moreindividuallyrationalthancrime). Rather. and to look to culturaldifferences as sources of conflict. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I thank Jack Goldstone.

The data on homicides are from the Bureau of Justice Statistics (1996). theNew YorkTimesand Washington Post. Tobacco and Firearms(1991. Press Evans P. arsons. 1996. Tobacco and Firearms. The Habits of Legality: CriminalJustice and the Rule ofLaw. Albany. thata riot severityindex is best constructedusing five indices (arrests. (BATF). A MatterofPrinciple. 1994. (BATF). Columbia Univ.A decision not to use the Carterand Westlaw data would have resulted in a significant loss of informationfor the periods they cover. ch.AnnualReviews.for the period 1972 to 1985. Tobacco and Firearms. UK: Cambridge Univ. Cambridge. p. 1995. it would be preferableto use a single data source for the entire period. 1981. and the Westlaw Inc. 1995 Factbook. 2). Cent. The Westlaw databasepermitsa key-wordcomputersearchof 150 US newspapers. 1985. NY: Hindelang Criminal Justice Res. I acceptedthis argument. 1996. Balancing the tradeoffs. The handgundata are from annualreportsof the Bureauof Alcohol.1983. The Dimensions of Effective Community Control. Boulder. Carter(1983. Foundations of Social TheUniv. which were then summed for each year. Law Rev. New York Clotfelter CT. 1983.with supportingevidence. In general.The five indices for each riot were transformedto Z-scores.MA: Harvard Cooter R. Press Baldassare M.. Natl. ed.org. Law Policy Q. Chicago Tribune). Explainingthe severity of the 1960's Black rioting: a city level investigation of curvilinear and structural break hypothesis. 3:425-41 ColemanJS. The problemis thatthe only datasource thatcovers the entireperiod is the majorindexed newspapers. Carter collected his datafrom five key sources. I decided to make use of the data from CarterandWestlaw. 97:4-68 Dworkin R. 1996. May 22 Bureau of Alcohol. deaths. 75-78) argues. Literature Cited Allen FA. Press Bureau of Alcohol. 1975. Bursik R Jr. Inst. 1991. Violence by young people: Why the deadly nexus. MA: HarvardUniv. Washington. Off. Enforce. 1982 term foreword: nomos and narrative. 1983. 1984.injuries. Introduction: development . Cover RM.and the demand for handguns:an empirical analysis. includingpublishedand unpublished datafromthe LembergCenterfor the Studyof Violence at BrandeisUniversity. Washington Post. How many guns? ATF News. Colum84:1523-60 bia Law Rev. DC: BATF. see Carter.and days rioted). Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). 1995). Aug:2-9 BourdieuP.for the period 1986 to 1994. 1990. Outlineofa Theoryof Practice. Cambridge. Visit the Annual Reviews home page at http://www. 1996. New York: Lexington CarterGL. disorders. Cambridge. Press ory. The Supreme Court.236 USEEM YorkTimes. Prices and sanctions. New York: Oxford Univ. 1995. andcompilationsmadeby the staff of a US Senate commitee (for a detailed discussion. 1993. Grasmick HG. The Los Angeles Riots: Lessons for the Urban Future. Harv. Sourcebookof CriminalJustice Statistics. PhD thesis. Crime. Neighborhoods and Crime. Justice J. newspaperdatabase. CO: Westview Blumstein A.

Am. 92:64-90 McCarthy JD.62:94-112 National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders(NACCD). Am. Soc. Q. Info. 1996b. The founding of social movement organizations: local citizens' groups opposing drunk driving. Deprivation and race riots: an extension of Spilerman's analysis. Oliver ML. micromobilization. The new urbanblacks. Mueller CM. 1973. Bolce LH. New York: Norton Goldstone JA. Sacrifice for the cause: groupprocesses. Chicago Press KakarS. Sociol. Bosnia: civil war. April 29-May 1. Mosakowski E. Repression. Soc. 35:447-58 Kelling GL. 88:1146-61 Miller AH. Pac. Fixing Broken Windows:Restoring Order and Reducing Crime in Our Communities. 1976. FarrellW Jr. J. Abortion and the Politics of Motherhood. 1983. ed. Econometrica 47:263-97 KakarS. Berkeley: Univ. Drass K. 79: 296-318 Luker K. 1990. Durham. Supplemental Studiesfor the National AdvisoryCommission on Civil Disorders. Sociol. Small Property versus Big Government:Social Origins of the Property Tax Revolt. Political Process and the Development of Black Insurgency. 1996. Forces 69:521-48 Petersilia J. Jones CK. 1955-91. African American collective action and crime. 55:243-54 Huntington SP. Current379:12-18 Gamson WA. Polit. 1990. 539:130-41 McDowall D. Racial rioting in the 1960s: an event history analysis of local conditions.criminality and collective violence in nine- 237 teenth-century France. Coles CM. DC: USGPO OberschallA. Drass K. Chicago: Univ. Am.BREAKDOWN THEORIES strategies across the public-privatedivide. 1988. (1975). and political protest. New York: Free Press LaFree G. In Ecological Models of Organizations. pp. The Origins of Civil Rights Movement. Belmont. 1984. Sci. 1968a. The destruction of social .and commitment in a student social movement. ShanahanS. 1995. 1996b. The Los Angeles rebellion: a retrospective view. 1997. Roehl W. 1990. 1930-1970.Am. The effect of changes in intraracial income inequality and educational attainmenton changes in arrest rates for African Americans and whites. Duke Univ. Sociol. 1995. 1996. HalliganMR. 1996. Calif.pp. New Nationalism. J. Religion. Soc. Hee S. atrocities. 1982. 1990. and Reformers.. A profile of those arrested. CA: Sage Hirsch EL. 71-84. New Identities. Rebels.MA: Ballinger McDowall D.Acad. Am. and Conflict. J. 1996. Sociol. Am. 135-47 Pildes RH. 1996. The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of the World Order. Sociol.New York: Free Press Fukuyama F. eds. Sci. Sociol.. 1990. 1994. Rev. Ann. Religious conflict in the moder world. Soc. 61:614-34 LaFree G.. 1997. Rev. Stanford. The Colors of Violence: Cultural Identities. A General Theory of Crime. Hirschi T. Dev. UCLA Opp K-D. Trust: The Social Virtues and the Creation of Prosperity. Chicago. Chicago Press McAdam D. New York: Simon & Schuster Johnson JH Jr. 1986. recruitment. CT: Yale Univ. Washington. J. Sociol. 85: 1017-42 GottfredsonMR. 1997. Foreign Aff 75(6):28-46 Huntington SP. ethnic cleansing. 1968b. 1992. Rim Stud. 24(6):1033-37 FukuyamaF. Urbanization. Ethnicity 3:338-67 Morris A. Press Lodhi AQ. Washington. Victoria to Freud. Losses in the Los Angeles Civil Unrest. 1984. 1979. Soc. Frontiers in Social Movement Theory. GR Carroll. See Baldassare 1994. Wolfson M. Beverly Hills. Loftin C. Prospect theory: an analysis of decision under risk. CA: Wadsworth Gay P. New Perspect.New York: Free Press MorrisAD.New Haven. Press Myers D. WorldDev.NC Olzak S. 1973. Collective security and the demand for legal handguns. Presented at Mellon Semin. 1976. AbrahamseA. 1980. The weakness of organization: a new look at Gamson's The Strategy of Social Protest. Cambridge. 1957 to 1990. 1992. Press McAdam D. Press GurrTR. Recruitment to high risk activism:the case of freedom summer. CA: Stanford Univ. Am. 1996a. Rogues. Social Conflictand Social Movements. The Cultivation of Hatred: The Bourgeois Experience. Trust: social capital and the global economy. Firearmsand self defense. 1993. Rev. Modernity is not enough. Tilly C. Reportof the National Advisory Commissionon Civil Disorders. Los Angeles: Cent. 1992. 1996a. Baker DP.DC: USGPO National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (NACCD). The Strategy of Social Protest. Calif. Am.Berkeley: Univ. NJ: Prentice Hall Oberschall A. Tversky A. Forces 74:931-61 Ong P. IL: Univ. Econ. Forces 75:835-53 Lo CYH. 6: 356-72 KahnemanD. 1993. Englewood Cliffs.

The state and collective disorders: the Los Angeles riot/protestof April. Who Votes?New Haven.Law Policy 31:259-78 About Crime. 1993. Press Verba S. Press Useem B. Huge Comparisons. Penn. Downey L. New York: Oxford Univ. 1972. MA: HarvardUniv. 1944. San Francisco:Inst. ed. Looking backward to look forward:reflections on the past and future of the resource mobilization researchperspective. Cress DM. Univ. Tilly L. In Crime. Press Putnam RD. From Mobilization to Revolution. New York: Harper& Row von Hayek FA. Stepick A. 1830 to 1968. The criminal-civil distinction and the utility of desert. 144:2055-77 Piven FF. Master frames and cycles of protest. Cloward RA. 41:771-93 Staggenborg S. 1996. 1972. The regulation of groups: the influence of legal and nonlegal sanctions on collective action. 1978. Cambridge. 36:427-42 Spilerman S. 1970. New York: Free Press Wilson WJ. 144:2021-53 Tarrow S. Rev. Reading. 1996. 1980. Am. New York: Russell Sage Found. 1971-1986. The causes of racial disturbances:tests of an explanation. Strikes in France. TheRebellious Century 1830-1930. Univ. pp. 1994.238 USEEM ment: Organization and Activism in the Abortion Conflict. 193-216. The causes of racial disturbances: a comparisonof alternativeexplanations. Schutz A. 1995. CT: Yale Univ. Law Rev. Normalizing collective protest. The Pro-Choice Move- . CampC. The Moral Sense. 1987. Am. 1968. Press Tierney K. Forces 76:357-77 Useem B. Polit. Contemp.S. See Morris & Mueller 1992. MA: Addison-Wesley Tilly C. Prison Riots. Sociol. 35:627-49 SpilermanS. 1975. Sociol. Rev. New York: Free Press Skolnick JH. Cloward RA. Stud. Cambridge. Participation in America: Political Democracy and Social Equality. JQ Wilson. 1993. Nie N. J Petersilia. 326-48 capital throughlaw. Sociol. 133-55 Snow DA. New York: Oxford Univ. Tuning in. Chicago. Kimball PA. CampG. 301-25 Portes A. On the expressive functions of the law. 1997. Crimeand the Spiral ofDecay in American Neighborhoods. 1980. Mobilization 3:1-20 Snyder D. Chicago Law Rev. UK: Cambridge Univ. Polit. 1996. Thinking York: Basic Books. 1977. Chicago Press Weed FJ. New York: Oxford Univ. See Baldassare 1994. See Morris & Mueller 1992. The community. pp. Power in Movement. Collective Action and Politics. New York: Knopf Wolfinger RE. Resolution of Prison Riots: Strategies and Policies. 1974. States of Siege. 1992. Berkeley: Univ. Tilly R. Rev. 1996. Boston Univ. Fyfe JF.New Wilson JQ. 1991. Social Movements. Law Rev. Tilly C. 1990. Sociol. 1989. Press Useem B. Solidaritymodel. 1995. Sci. How They Fail. Calif. Rev.Univ. Grass roots activism and drunk driving issues: a survey of MADD chapters. Wilson JQ. ed. Tilly C. 45:357-69 Useem B. Penn. 1985. Large Processes. PS. Law Rev. The Problem of Social Reality. Benford RD. 1971. Am. Press Zald MN. pp. 76:201-14 SampsonRJ. Property damage and violence: a collective behavior analysis. The Road to Serfdom. City on the Edge.Am. Tilly C. Am. 1996. 63:133-97 PutnamRD. Sociol. 50:667-88 Useem B. Princeton. Press Sunstein CR. Press Skogan WG. 1994. U. 1984. 1976. New York: Free Press Snow D. The Transformationof Miami. Rev. 1993. Rev. IL: Univ. breakdown model. The Hague: Nijhoff Shorter E. 1993. Rosenstone SJ. Poor People's Movements:WhyTheySucceed. Above the Law: Police and the Excessive Use of Force. Structuralcharacteristics of cities and the severity of racial disorders. 1992. 1962. Jones AW. and the Boston anti-busing movement. Rev. Hardshipand collective violence in France: 1830 to 1960. 24:664-83 Robinson PH. 1992. Disruptingthe quotidian:reconceptualizing the relationship between breakdown and the emergence of collective action. Soc. tuning out: the strange disappearanceof social capital in America. MakingDemocracy Work. 1998. New York: Pantheon Piven FF. When WorkDisappears: The Worldof the New Urban Poor. New York: Cambridge Univ. pp. Disorganizationand the New Mexico prison riot of 1980. 37:520-32 SpilermanS. Sociol. Big Structures. Civic Traditions in Modern Italy. 1992. NJ: PrincetonUniv. Press Posner E. See Morris & Mueller 1992. 149-73 Tilly C.Am. pp. Disorder and Decline.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful