Off-campus UMass Amherst users: To download campus access dissertations, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your UMass Amherst user name and password.

Non-UMass Amherst users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this dissertation through interlibrary loan.

Dissertations that have an embargo placed on them will not be available to anyone until the embargo expires.

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program

Sociology

Year Degree Awarded

Fall 2014

First Advisor

Gianpaolo Baiocchi

Second Advisor

Emily Erikson

Third Advisor

Briankle Chang

Subject Categories

Politics and Social Change | Sociology of Culture | Theory, Knowledge and Science

Abstract

This dissertation brings the philosophical writings of Jacques Rancière to sociology through the examination of women’s suffrage in the US from the late 18th through mid 19th century. The issue of equality takes center stage here, as Rancière’s politics is based on the alteration of symbolic categories of equal and unequal. The result is a sociological theory of politics that claims disagreement, not consensus, must be at the base of any democratic politics that broadly seeks equality. Women’s limited suffrage in New Jersey from 1776-1807, and the build up and proclamation of equality at the Seneca Falls Convention in 1848 are the cases examined to show the necessity of disagreement for equality in democratic politics.

Share

COinS