Mobilization special issue on Intersectionality and Social Movements

The journal Mobilization seeks contributions for a special issue on intersectionality and social movements, guest edited by Zakiya Luna (University of California, Santa Barbara), Sujatha Jesudason (The New School) and Mimi Kim (California State University, Long Beach). Mobilization will publish this issue in 2020. 

An increasing number of scholars are foregrounding the importance of understanding how identities and political structures co-constitute each other. In her work, Crenshaw (1991) outlines the necessity of understanding the different manifestations of intersectionality – structural, political, and representational. As social movement studies makes a slow turn towards intersectionality, there are many works to build on that offer insights into the many iterations, practices, and attempts to dointersectionality at the level of social movements and movement research.  

Some authors explore how coalitions themselves offer models of political intersectionality on the ground (Cole 2008, Roberts and Jesudason 2013, Verloo 2013), while others consider the production of intersectionality as a collective action frame among undocumented youth organizers (Terriquez 2015, Terriquez et al. 2018) or in the Women’s Marches (Fisher et al. 2017, 2018). Others have considered how women of color navigate intersectionality within their own movement spaces (Luna 2016) or forge new social movement spaces as shown in the divide between radical women, transgender and gender non-conforming people of color from primarily White-led investments in the expansion of the carceral state (Kim 2018; Richie 2011).  In the international context, we see how organizations in countries with different racial regimes interpret intersectionality (Lepinard 2014) and how intersectionality has become lingua franca at the United Nations, in part through the work of anti-racist activists (Falcon 2016). In analyzing online spaces, some have shown how activists and politicians attempt to respond to explicitly intersectional claims by Black movements such as #SayHerName (Brown et al. 2017, Stout et al. 2017).  Further, some call to attend to intersectionality to challenge oppressive research practices (Liu 2017).

All these examples give us a taste of the unique and potentially transformative approaches to social movements that intersectionality invites, and in this issue, we are interested in digging deeper to elucidate the promises, possibilities, and failures of intersectionality in the context of movements and mobilization.

We seek original research articles from all disciplines that explore different dimensions of intersectionality and social movements. We welcome theoretical and empirical articles that address intersectionality as outcomes of mobilization and/or as a significant factor in shaping further mobilization. Central questions include, but are not limited to:

–      How does an intersectional approach offer different ways to study social movements or provide new insights into prior movements?

–      How do social movement organizations enact intersectionality?

–      What are the challenges, barriers, and opportunities for social movements in trying to achieve intersectionality?

–     What are the limits and benefits of intersectionality as a framework for analyzing social movements?

We encourage authors to review recent issues of the journalfor inspiration as well. Manuscripts are submitted through the Mobilization editorial web site. See the Mobilizationauthor guidelinesfor the required format and maximum word count.

In your cover letter, please note that this manuscript is for our special issue on Intersectionality and Movements. 

Submissions are due November 15, 2019. We will notify potential authors of preliminary decisions in early 2020. Prospective authors must agree to submit any revisions within six weeks so the editorial team can move forward with final decisions and production team can move forward and publish the print issue in 2020. Potential authors are encouraged to contact the special issue editors, Zakiya Luna (, Sujatha Jesudason ( or Mimi Kim (, with any questions in advance of submission.

Mobilizationis the leading journal of research on social and political movements and other forms of contentious politics. Our goal is to advance the systematic, scholarly, and scientific study of these phenomena, and to provide a forum for the discussion of methodologies, theories, and conceptual approaches across the disciplines of sociology, political science, social psychology, communications, and anthropology.