Jackie Smith

Jackie Smith is professor of sociology at the University of Pittsburgh. She is also a member of Sociologists without Borders and a delegate to the United States Social Forum’s National Planning Committee. Her most recent books include Social Movements in the World-System: The Politics of Crisis and Transformation (pdf), Social Movements for Global Democracy and, with multiple co-authors, Global Democracy and the World Social Forums.

Articles by this author

(Photo via Flickr / Royce Blair / NASA) Views
Monday, April 21, 2014 - 3:30pm
Mother Earth Day 2014: Time for a Paradigm Change
With each day’s headlines it becomes more and more clear that our modern, industrialized culture is a suicide machine. Not only has our consumption of fossil fuels polluted our air, land, and water to an extent that threatens the long-term survival of humans and other species, but our political...
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Friday, April 19, 2013 - 12:58pm
People’s Movements Give “Earth Day” a New Name and Transformative Potential
Few Americans are aware that in 2009, the United Nations declared April 22nd “International Mother Earth Day.” In doing so, it made what had been a U.S. event an international one, drawing attention to the need for people to unite across national borders to confront global environmental challenges.
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Tuesday, May 8, 2012 - 2:23pm
Media Attention and the Political Impacts of Occupy Wall Street
This May Day brought unprecedented numbers of Americans out in the streets to mark international worker’s day. But in Pittsburgh, one wouldn’t know that a few hundred residents also gathered to protest the corporate behemoths whose buildings dominate the downtown landscape and whose policies have devastated our economy, our local community, and our health. While the local newspaper saw it fit to report on the May Day protests in Madrid, and the broken windows and arrests of activists in other parts of the country, our local event was ignored.
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Monday, December 26, 2011 - 12:43pm
Evict BNY Mellon, not Occupy Pittsburgh
On Dec. 13, BNY Mellon filed a court action seeking to evict the Occupy Pittsburgh encampment from Mellon Green, where occupiers have been peacefully protesting without complaints from the public or the city. This action is an attempt to squelch the vital public dialogue that the Occupy Wall Street movement has been advocating.
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Sunday, December 11, 2011 - 10:37am
How Elite Media Strategies Marginalize the Occupy Movement
I took the decision by Foreign Affairs to report on the Occupy Wall Street protests as a sign that the movement was having some success. Not surprisingly, however, this favorite journal of foreign policy pundits offers “expert” commentary that reinforces a theme that has dominated corporate media coverage of the OWS movement.
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Friday, March 11, 2011 - 9:18am
Amid Democratic Revolutions Abroad, Authoritarian Revolutions at Home
As Egyptians and other democracy advocates around the Middle East celebrate their gains in winning concessions from authoritarian regimes, at home we are witnessing a revolution of authoritarianism. Republican governors across the country are seeking to simultaneously seize authority from state legislatures and undermine the ability of ordinary citizens to affect the decisions that shape their lives.
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Monday, February 14, 2011 - 12:33pm
Many Protests, One Revolution
The massive rise of popular protests around the Middle East and North Africa coincided with the convening of the World Social Forum in Dakar, Senegal. While the former were the subject of deserved and extensive media attention, the latter was virtually ignored by mainstream media. Yet all these gatherings of activists should be seen as part of a single, global movement that has been unfolding for over a decade.
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