As protesters across the United States take part in today’s May Day General Strike, we at Social Media Chimps thought we’d take a look at the relationship between Occupy Wall Street and the Arab Spring.
In the above video, Yale sociology professor Jeffrey Alexander talks about revolution in today’s social media universe. Alexander, author of “Performative Revolution in Egypt,” discusses how the Egyptian revolution may have inspired the Walkerville occupation in Madison, Wisconsin, and eventually the events that led to Occupy Wall Street.
“(People) see something else happening and they think, ‘that’s possible for us’. They have a model in terms of performance and symbolic action and inspiration,” said Alexander.
As Yale University uploaded this video in early November (a few weeks before the New York Police Department dismantled the occupation in Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park), we should remember that Professor Alexander is speaking about Occupy Wall Street in a time of perhaps its most powerful influence.
Occupy Wall Street has been out of sight and out of mind for many Americans today, but we’re interested to see if tomorrow’s general strike will succeed in sparking the movement once more as the summer months near. We’ve established that Occupy Wall Street is notorious for its powerful online presence, but much of the movement’s success will also rely on the number of protestors who make it out to the streets for their protests.