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Title: Paris and Mexico City : 1968 student activism
Author: Stokes, Sarah
ISNI:       0000 0004 2726 9675
Awarding Body: Oxford University
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis investigates the mass student movements in Paris and Mexico City in 1968. Many parts of the world experienced activism of this nature in 1968, yet scholars debate whether this was coincidental or part of a genuinely global movement. Most studies of such activism have focussed either on one country or on nations that belonged to the same region and/or were at the same level of economic development. France and Mexico were on different continents and economically and culturally distinct. Exploring the student movements in their respective capitals offers the possibility of shedding light on the global phenomenon of 1968 from a fresh perspective. The thesis adopts both a comparative and a transnational approach. The comparative approach establishes what the two movements had in common, where they diverged, and why. It contrasts their internal policies and structures with how they were presented publicly, analysing the groupings, leadership structures, role of professors, participation of foreigners, flyers, posters, icons and mass marches that constituted the two activisms. It concludes that in underlying character there were many parallels between the two. Moreover, both movements faced a similar four-stage government response: confrontation, negotiation, repression and reconciliation. The thesis also examines the degree to which the two movements were transnational in terms of their collaboration and interaction. It finds that both experienced the same cycle of international, national and transnational activism. Many students in France and Mexico were politicised for the first time through their involvement in international campaigns over issues such as Vietnam. During the phase of mass activism, however, both movements focussed mainly on national concerns. With the decline of mass activism, students from both countries began to interact together on a broader scale and a transnational dimension to the student movement became apparent.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available