The role of movement leaders in building intergroup solidarity for social change: A case of the electoral reform movement in Malaysia

Selvanathan, Hema Preya and Khoo, Ying Hooi and Lickel, Brian (2020) The role of movement leaders in building intergroup solidarity for social change: A case of the electoral reform movement in Malaysia. European Journal of Social Psychology, 50 (1). pp. 224-238. ISSN 0046-2772

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1002/ejsp.2598

Abstract

Leaders of social movements play a critical role in mobilizing broader society for social change. However, we know little about how movement leaders strategize to build a movement. To examine this issue, we interviewed the central leadership team of the electoral reform movement (Bersih) in Malaysia, before and after a mass protest organized by the movement. We then used thematic analysis to provide theoretically derived insights into how the leaders fostered intergroup solidarity among multiple racial groups. Specifically, they (a) expanded the movement's boundaries to include new groups within its support base, (b) shared the demands of the movement with multiple groups, and (c) highlighted leaders that were representative of different groups the movement sought to unite. These findings demonstrate how leaders attempt to craft an inclusive movement identity (i.e., who we are, what we do, who stands for us) to mobilize a diverse society for social change. © 2019 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: identity; intergroup solidarity; leadership; social change; social movements
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Depositing User: Ms. Juhaida Abd Rahim
Date Deposited: 25 Jun 2020 01:29
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2020 01:29
URI: http://eprints.um.edu.my/id/eprint/24986

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