The transformation of greenpeace: from a new social movement to a moderate social movement organization

Kaya, Rukiy
In this thesis, my argument is that Greenpeace has transformed from a new social movement to a moderate social movement organization (SMO), and it has lost its new social movement features. To understand this transformation, I examine new social movement literature. Firstly, I investigate under what circumstances new social movements emerged, and how the new social movements were in the 70’s and 80’s. Therefore, I summarized the economic, political, and social changes in the 1960s and analyzed how these changes affected new social movements in the sense of actors, issues, values, and modes of action. Following, I investigate new approaches which aim to clarify new social movements and try to find out if they explain the evolution of movements. Since there is no comprehensive explanation for movements’ transformation, I analyze both new social movement and social movement organization (SMO) conceptions. As a result, I reach a comprehensive new social movement definition which includes all features of new social movements. I also argue that the concept of ‘social movement organizations (SMOs)’ does not refer to a homogeneous category. While there are moderate social movement organizations (SMOs) which have lost their movement characteristics, there are also radical social movement organizations (SMOs) which protect these features. My objective is to show that Greenpeace is a moderate social movement organization (SMO), and in order to demonstrate that, I summarized the recent form of Greenpeace International. Besides, I also argue that although Greenpeace was a new social movement at the beginning, it has lost its movement features. In order to demonstrate this process, I analyze the historical story of Greenpeace.


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Citation Formats
R. Kaya, “ The transformation of greenpeace: from a new social movement to a moderate social movement organization,” Thesis (M.S.) -- Graduate School of Social Sciences. International Relations., Middle East Technical University, 2019.