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The process by which a group goes from being a passive collection of individuals to an active participant in public life. (Demobilization is thus the reverse process.) Used in this way, the term has had a wide currency in sociology, and has been applied in particular to studies of collective action in the literatures on modernization, social movements, and revolution (see rebellion, revolution). Mobilization is usually seen as resource mobilization; that is, significant gain over the control of assets, where assets may be viewed as coercive (weapons, armed forces, technologies), utilitarian (goods, money, information), or normative (loyalties or obligations) in nature—a typology suggested by Amitai Etzioni in The Active Society (1968). The most complete formal statement of the theory, illustrated by a range of subject-matters to which the mobilization model of collective action can be applied, is Charles Tilly's From Mobilization to Revolution (1978). See also collective behaviour.

Subjects: Sociology.

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