English title: Effects of Democracy and Inequality on Soft Political Protest in Europe: Exploring the European Social Survey Data

Author(s): Joshua Kjerulf Dubrow - Kazimierz M. Slomczynski - Irina Tomescu-Dubrow -

Language: English

Type: Journal article

Year: 2008

Abstract

In this cross-national study, soft political-protest behavior is defined as participation in a legal demonstration, signing a petition, or contacting governmental officials. We find that in Europe in 2006 (1) the proportion of political protesters is significantly higher in old democracies than in the new, predominantly post-communist, democracies, and (2) the greater the income inequality in both old and new democracies, the lower the proportion of political protesters. These two regularities, established for country-level data, hold even if the index of democracy and gross domestic product per capita are controlled. Using individual-level data, we find that in all countries included in the European Social Survey trust in parliament and high social position positively influences the probability of individuals’ protest behavior. Combining both levels of analysis, we pay particular attention to the effects of two macro-characteristics: old/new democracies and income inequality. Both of these characteristics prove to be significant predictors of soft political-protest behavior.

Volume: 38

Issue: 3

From page no: 36

To page no: 51

Refereed:

DOI: 10.2753/IJS0020-7659380302

Journal: International Journal of Sociology

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