GORDON, U., 2012. Israel's 'Tent Protests': the chilling effect of nationalism. Social Movement Studies, 11 (3-4), pp. 349 - 355.
The Israeli ‘Tent Protest’ movement enjoyed wide popular support, but displayed a
distinct lack of political radicalism. Not only did calls for discrete welfare policies replace explicit
anti-capitalism, but there was a widespread insistence on the movement’s ‘apolitical’ nature and an
avoidance of any direct confrontation with the neoliberal Netanyahu government or calls for new
elections. The article argues that these anomalies can be explained by the chilling effect of the
patriotic, state-loyalist discourses which reached unprecedented prominence in Israeli society in the
past year. This led movement participants to avoid at all costs being perceived as left-wing and
disloyal, and created an atmosphere of deliberate self-censorship which silenced any engagement
with the Israeli–Palestinian conflict during the mobilization. The movement is understood here as an
all-too-brief interlude in Israel’s ongoing move away from democracy.
This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published in Social Movement Studies on 1 August 2012, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/14742837.2012.708832