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Structured Deviations from the Overall Model

Having identified these different social groups within the structure we can now move on to determine to which extend the general model adequately describes the behavior for each of these sub-populations. Deviation and adequacy of the overall model can be judged by analyzing the amount of activity any social group shows at a any given point of time and by comparing the observed activity to the activity that would be predicted under the assumptions of the general model. In a technical sense the difference between the expected and predicted values are the residuals from the regression analysis reported above. Substantively our analysis of the error terms tests to what degree the overall model that explains mobilization through the existing social structure adequately fits the behavior of the distinct groups. The focus on the aggregated residuals for each of the social classes combines the structural perspective on mobilization with a perspective viewing the mobilization of protest as resulting from an equivalent position in society and therefore from the claims made by different social groups during a revolution where power and privileges are newly distributed.

 

The following guidelines apply in the interpretation of the residual: Where the residuals are relatively small or even approach zero, the overall model applies, in other words protest is well explained within the structural model of mobilization. If otherwise the residuals are positive, it means the specific group showed more activity than expected under the assumption of the general model. On the opposite, if the residuals are negative, the amount of activity is less than assumed from their degree of exposure. Both cases of positive and negative deviations indicate phenomena that are not adequately explained within the model and ask for further, historical explanations.

 

Table 3:

Phase1

Exposure

Activity

Residual

Entrepreneurs

231.56

.60

.388

Craftsmen

138.49

.19

-.102

Academics

212.56

.18

.006

Employees

106.25

.12

.060

Peasants

61.24

.00

-.65

Workers

38.92

.02

.148


The more differentiated view on the mobilization process that took place during the first time period is shown in Table 3. The first column in the table reports on the average exposure measure for the distinct groups, the second column gives the average activity level, and the third the averaged residuals values. The results reported in Table 3 clearly indicate a very different level of participation among the six social strata. At the outbreak of the revolution the merchants showed the highest amount of activity, followed by craftsmen and educated bourgeoisie. On the opposite side vintners and workers show only a minimum amount of participation. A look at the residual values reveals that merchants are not only the most active group but that their activity is by far higher than expected under the assumptions of the general relationship. In contrast, vintners and craftsmen have negative residuals: their activity is much lower than would be expected from the exposure that they are experiencing.

 

How do these findings fit into the wider historical context? Clearly, the protest was largely initiated by the merchants who were well anchored in the social structure of the city. In the early phase of the revolution it is the established class in an economical and social sense that most actively calls for the installation of democratic principles including the right to form association, freedom of press, freedom of trade, and a new judicature. Within the city the revolution is initiated by the group that is economically emancipated and has the most social, political, and institutional experiences. This is not only reflected by their position within the web of relations but it gets additional evidence if one more closely examines the specific functions they had within the central institutions of the city (Lipp 1998: 239-42). The contribution of the other groups is only marginal during the early outbreak and initialization of the revolution. Let us now turn to the second stage of the revolution with these findings in mind.

 

Table 4:

Phase2

Exposure

Activity

Residual

Entrepreneurs

354.11

.43

-.314

Craftsmen

260.98

.46

-.114

Academics

191.30

..23

-.388

Employees

180.56

.25

-.330

Peasant

162.21

.73

.474

Workers

162.60

.55

.176

Table 4 shows that the level of exposure rose across all groups during the second phase of the revolution. Apart from this general tendency a look at the activity levels reveals that workers and vintners are the most active groups at this stage of the revolution. This activity is, as the residuals show, not accounted for by the exposure they are experiencing. Clearly, among these people recruitment did not take place within and through the structures of the city. Both groups, vintners and workers, are much more active than we would expect from these considerations. In contrast, all the rest of the population is much less active than would be expected from the exposure they are experiencing.

In the second phase of the revolution, where a government had been established in Frankfurt, a wider spectrum of social groups entered the revolutionary stage. Participation of craftsmen, workers and vintners dominated the picture. While the craftsmen acted according to the general model that postulates a spread within the structure, vintners and workers showed by far more activity than expected from their exposure. In the situation where a new constitution is written in Frankfurt and privileges such as those for the churches, the tradesmen, and the working class are newly negotiated other groups, namely the vintners and the workers, are mobilized to formulate their interests. Among these socially marginal groups we observe effective, yet external, mechanisms of mobilization. Here mobilization does not take place through the structure but through an equivalent position within the larger society that drives members of these groups to formulate their interests.

 

Table 5:

Phase3

Exposure

Activity

Residual

Entrepreneurs

496.28

.90

-0.5

Craftsmen

339.50

.86

.11

Academics

271.63

.52

-.22

Employees

244.45

.49

-.22

Peasants

180.93

.71

.15

Workers

179.39

.51

-.11


The last stage of the revolution shows a picture very similar to the one that characterized its beginning. While the rise of contacts for the merchants and craftsmen continues, their activities almost double. For the educated bourgeoisie as well as for the clerks we find less activity than expected. The workers and the vintners, only peripherally connected to the whole system, still experience little exposure. Nonetheless, both groups continue to be active though their activity drops slightly: from a = .73 to a = .71 for the vintners and from a = .55 to a= .51 for the workers.

 

In the third phase of the revolution, it is again the merchants who play the most prominent role. At that point it was clear that the revolution in large had failed and a final battle for some of the revolutionary achievements broke out. Craftsmen and vintners are much more active than we would expect. In contrast the academics and the clerks have left the revolutionary arena and are only marginally active. There is a simple explanation for this behavior. Most of these people were employed by either the city or the state and at a time where its was clear that the revolution would fail most heavily feared sanctions against themselves.


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Next: Conclusion Up: Exposure, Networks, and Mobilization: Town Previous: General and Specific Relationships
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1999-05-04