Why students care so much about Gaza – Asia Times

Why students care so much about Gaza - Asia Times

In recent weeks, student activists have protested the continuing fight in Gaza on campuses all over the world.

Although the protests on American campuses have been mostly relaxing, tensions are starting to escalate. New incidents of student clashes and hate speech have been reported. Additionally, there have been shocking scenes of authorities interventions throughout the US to stifle similar protests nationwide.

The kids, and many others, are protesting the loss of life and worsening problems in the current Gaza fight.

The Israeli Defense Forces ‘ response to the Arab hostage-taking attack last year is thought to have resulted in more than 34 000 deaths, with many of the hostages held by Hamas still unreported. The UN has described this as “full-blown hunger,” which affects numerous Palestinians.

Certainly, the situation in Gaza calls for urgent global interest and a peaceful resolution. Far from it, though, there are other military conflicts or humanitarian crises in the world.

Why, therefore, has the Gaza combat generated such zealous and sustained attention, particularly among young people? Why do some people protest on this particular problem but not others?

Strong, stunning narrative

The reasons people choose to protest are several different things. Personal, household or group influences are strong desires to become an activist. However, social media news coverage and stories can be enough to spark action even for those who do n’t have a clear cause.

Some reports or tales, according to research, have greater power than others in galvanizing political activism. In the case of the Gaza war, I think three aspects of the tale contributed to the rise of considerable opposition moves around the world.

Second, narratives are strong motivators of activity when they combine aspects of what cultural movements researchers call “breach” and “resonance”.

A crisis tale, like the one in Gaza, attracts and holds person’s interest because it upsets us. It represents a “breach” with our anticipation of how life should be and what we deem appropriate.

A compelling narrative must also be” historically relevant,” which is to say, in line with our understanding of how the world operates. That is to say, it may indicate a familiar story.

The pictures of children and families who have been harmed by the Gaza combat tell a tragic, but recognized, story. And this has spurred activists to take legal action to right the violation.

An “ideal prey”

Next, protesters frequently feel inspired to take collective action to protect or support an “ideal victim.”

The power of this core figure compelled action, in addition to the term “ideal victim,” is not excellent, and the idea is ever-present in consciousness campaigns and protest movements. In scientific terms, excellent victims are those seen as being honest and powerless.

Campaigns for the Palestinian people’s cause previously failed to have the same level of support or urgency as they do now. The Israeli Defence Forces ‘ military might in the current Gaza conflict, in contrast to the risk of the human population there, highlights the “ideal target” in need of protesters ‘ most immediate responses.

Of course, there are many “ideal victims” in conflicts and crises all over the world whose stories do n’t inspire collective action.

Their stories are n’t being featured in news publications or on social media, which contributes to this. While the “ideal target” must be recognized as useless, they must also be able to tell their tale to encourage others to work, either themselves or through their activists. Carelessness renders some conflict victims visible.

Substantial effect

Third, when there is a distinct call to action and activists can see a place for themselves in the narrative, protest or social activity is frequently more successful.

The necessity and “real-time” nature of the Gaza conflict are key motivators for action. The Israeli-Palestinian fight is not fresh, but it has been unfolding right in front of us since October when Israelis were kidnapped and killed during the Hamas abuse and the government used power to confront it.

The idea of a surface assault on Rafah seems to be driving protesters ‘ interest, as it may be at a crucial point in the fight where their protests could potentially have a real effect.

When other forms of engagement fail to bring about change, the motivation to protest even rises exponentially. Protest movements manifest themselves as a result of social leaders disobeying petitions and images from community organizations. And when legislatures do n’t act, protesters demand that others take legal action.

For instance, some students are urging their universities to shut down Israeli companies that are more loosely connected to the occupied West Bank and Gaza in order to demonstrate in a symbolic way during the current protests.

This is part of the wider boycott, divest and sanction ( or BDS ) campaign, which uses political consumerism and political investorism as protest tactics.

The divestiture demand gives protesters an attainable goal with a regional target: their individual universities, despite the incomprehensible nature of the conflict in Gaza. Protesting at this critical moment, with an attainable demand, allows campaigners to compose themselves into the storyline. They have a role to play in the harmony drive.

In recent days, this activity has led to substantial results. Three Jewish companies linked to communities in the occupied Palestinian territories have been agreed to by Trinity College Dublin in Ireland. After the school made the announcement, kids began dismantling their opposition station.

Protest is not always about achieving specific requirements, though. Protests also have a major symbolic benefit in promoting causes and inspiring others.

Students protesting for peace exemplify a wider tale information that fighting for justice is a worthwhile endeavor, whether they are motivated by strong reports, a need to guard subjects, or the chance to have an impact.

Erin O’Brien is Associate Professor, School of Government and International Relations, Griffith University

The Conversation has republished this essay under a Creative Commons license. Read the original post.