Education Forum
Explaining Riots and Urban Disorder
Find Somone Who
Sociology of Power and Politics
Sociology Home
Link 1: Brixton Riots
Link 2: Bradford Riots
Link 3: Bradford Riots 2
Link 4: Riots of the 1980s
Link 5: Summer Riots 2011
Education Forum

WALT: What causes riots and urban disorder?
WILFs: Can define and explain the difference between political action and DIRECT political action (D)....... can describe and explain competing theoretical explanations of riots and urban disorder (C)... can give describe two examples of recent riots in the UK and use theory to explain why they happened (B)... Can assess which theory best explains recent riots in the UK (A)

Rioting is a form of direct action. Direct actions is defined as political action which happens outside normal political channels. Direct action is often therefore associated with New Social Movements who have little influence over normal political processes. Direct action can be peaceful and lawful for instance demonstrations, sit ins, and boycotts. However it is frequently illegal and can take the form of rioting, vandalism and terrorism. The most serious form of direct actions is the urban riot.
In this lesson you will investigate sociological explanations of urban riots and then assess the validity of these ideas against some research you will do on actual events.

Lesson Development
1. 'Find Someone Who' Revision Exercise

2. Rally Robin - all the ways a person can participate in British politics then Stand and Share

3. Write down the paragraph above. Then with your Study Buddy discuss how riots and urban disorder might be explain by
a) Marxists
b) New Right Thinkers
c) Functionalists
d) Post modernists
e) Feminists
4. Stand and Share
5. Complete the reading then Rally Coach the Causes of Riots Interactive diagram embedded below - summarise AND evaluate
6. In your new pairs collect emprical evidence of actual riots from this page and explain which theoretical explanation from the earlier exercise best explains what happened - record your answer on a large piece of sugar paper

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