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Student movements

Gigi Roggero

Subject History
Applied Psychology » Political Psychology
Sociology » Social Movements

Place World

Key-Topics civil rights, freedom, revolution, student movements

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405184649.2009.01411.x


In the history of modernity student movements have played a central role in protests, unrest, revolutions, and the formation of radical theories. A watershed can be indicated in the periodization of such movements: “Sixty-Eight.” In fact, this is more an event than a date: it became the symbol of students' insurgency all over the world. At the same time, the temporal and spatial borders of this event need to be rethought, displacing the mainstream and mostly Eurocentric vision associated with it. On one hand, it is necessary to frame the students' “Sixty-Eight” within the international workers', proletarian, and anti-colonial struggles in the 1960s as well as the mobilizations against war and for civil rights. On the other hand, the student movements were not merely a western event. On the contrary, “Sixty-Eight” can be seen as the first global revolutionary movement in modernity. On this basis, “Sixty-Eight” can be viewed from an Asian perspective. This would encompass the Vietnamese resistance, a source of inspiration for the global student and social movements. The Tet counteroffensive , begun in January 1968, demonstrated that imperialism really was a “paper tiger.” At the same time, in the People's Republic of China, “Sixty-Eight” began in 1966 with the cultural revolution , one of the most important and ambivalent events of recent history. The students, as Red Guards, were ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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