Confronting the West: Social Movement Frames in 20th Century Iran

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Virginia Tech

The Iranian Revolution of 1979 received considerable attention from modern social scientists who study collective action and revolution because it allowed them to apply their different perspectives to an ongoing social event. Likewise, this work used the Iranian experience as an exemplar, focusing on a sequence of related social movement frames that were negotiated by Iranian groups from the late 19th through the 20th century. Snow and Benford (1992) have proposed that cycles of protest are associated with the development of a movement master frame. This frame is a broad collective orientation that enables people to interpret an event in a more or less uniform manner. This study investigated how movement groups in Iran developed master frames of mobilization during periodic cycles of protests from 1890 to the present. By investigating how master frames were negotiated by social movement actors over time, this work examined both the continuity and change of movement messages during periods of heightened social protest in Iran.

Social Movements, Sociology, Iran, Islam, History