International Society of Political Psychology

Conference Abstracts

Diasporaprotest: Why Dutch Jews and Muslims protest in the Netherlands

Jacquelien van Stekelenburg, VU University; Raymond van Ginkel, VU University

Conference: ISPP 2011
Affiliation: VU University Amsterdam
Research Area: Social inequality and social change

The term “CNN effect” has been coined to describe the influence of satellite news on intergroup conflicts in other parts of the world. Through satellite television and the Internet, people are more informed about the struggles of their brothers and sisters worldwide with which they feel emotionally connected. ‘Explosive import products’ such as the war in Iraq or Gaza conflicts in Israel  are vividly transmitted and spur intergroup conflicts thousands of kilometres away from the source of the conflict. Hence, we observe more and more Diaspora protest nowadays. For instance, after the third Intifada both Jews and Muslims took onto the streets in The Netherlands to express their fury and indignation. Why would people participate in such Diaspora protests? In an attempt to answer this question we merge two literatures; on diasporas and on collective action participation. We argue that different diasporas take different pathways to collective action participation as a function of their group status in the country they reside. Two religious diasporas in the Netherlands were studied: Jews (N= 88) and Muslims (N = 190), whereby Muslims compared to Jews are more subordinate. Results suggest that differences in group status is an overarching feature that makes Jews and Muslims follow different pathways to collective action participation. Jews follow an ‘‘efficacy pathway’’ that concerns embeddedness in civil society and its enhancing influence on feelings of efficacy, whereas Muslims appear to follow a ‘‘cynicism pathway’’ to collective action participation, which concerns the interplay of grievances and political cynicism. Further applications of this model to antecedents of collective action other than efficacy and cynicism (e.g. emotions, identity) are discussed.