Hit by the economic and political crisis, young people in Italy face increased labor precarity and the disillusionment derived from the disappearance of the radical Left from the parliamentary arena. In the Italian context, economic hardship, the decrease of resources available for collective action, and the weakened mobilizing capacity that traditional mass organizations (such as trade unions and political parties) retained in the first decade of the 2000s brought about a general decline in intensity and visibility of street protests, leading to an apparent retreat of activism to the local level of action. Although the crisis had a negative impact on collective action, evidence reveals that more creative and less visible forms of societal and political commitment were adopted by young generations in these years. This article explores how the Italian youth in times of crisis engaged actively in alternative and unconventional forms of political commitment aimed at re-appropriating space, free time, and access to leisure, mainly by means of mutualistic practices. Based on data from qualitative semistructured interviews with key informants and activists, this article sheds light on recreational activism, adopted as a political practice by the Italian youth active in counter-cultural spaces, nowadays at the forefront of the struggle to oppose the commodification of free time and leisure.

Rebelling Against Time: Recreational Activism as Political Practice Among the Italian Precarious Youth

Milan, Chiara
2019-01-01

Abstract

Hit by the economic and political crisis, young people in Italy face increased labor precarity and the disillusionment derived from the disappearance of the radical Left from the parliamentary arena. In the Italian context, economic hardship, the decrease of resources available for collective action, and the weakened mobilizing capacity that traditional mass organizations (such as trade unions and political parties) retained in the first decade of the 2000s brought about a general decline in intensity and visibility of street protests, leading to an apparent retreat of activism to the local level of action. Although the crisis had a negative impact on collective action, evidence reveals that more creative and less visible forms of societal and political commitment were adopted by young generations in these years. This article explores how the Italian youth in times of crisis engaged actively in alternative and unconventional forms of political commitment aimed at re-appropriating space, free time, and access to leisure, mainly by means of mutualistic practices. Based on data from qualitative semistructured interviews with key informants and activists, this article sheds light on recreational activism, adopted as a political practice by the Italian youth active in counter-cultural spaces, nowadays at the forefront of the struggle to oppose the commodification of free time and leisure.
Settore SPS/11 - Sociologia dei Fenomeni Politici
Italy; leisure activism; mutualism;
H2020
ReCitYu
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11384/107503
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