Global Activist Network involving Asia: global continuation and evolution in Japan
ABSTRACT Since Seattle 1999, plenty of summit protests around WTO, G8/20, IMF, WB, COP, and so on happened in each different summit sites in the last decade. Such incidents were amazingly accepted because of their mass actions and widespread networks of activists sustaining series of mass actions. As some researchers argue, those of generating networks are based on horizontality and autonomy, and they have already prefigured a powerful model for (re)organizing society. However, some researchers also argue the major shortcomings in the other hand. In theory ‘Global Activist network’ has constructed since Seattle though, in practice there has still been serious spatial gap between Western part of the world and other side of the world. Actually, global activist network was excluded Asia. However, in 2008, G8 summit was held in Japan. This paper, thus, aims to show that global activist network since Seattle which was in fact limited to the Europe and North America was expanded to involve Asia through 2008 G8 summit in Japan. 2000 G8 in Japan was right after the Seattle in 1999, yet, due to its single-issue and national character of the movements, globally expanding networks didn’t reach to Japan. However, movements around 2003 anti-Iraq war brought in autonomous character of alter-globalization movement and referred the legacy of autonomous activisms. During 2008 G8, some autonomous activists in Japan then took over diversity of tactics and networks of activists inherited since PGA, DAN and ‘Dissent!’.
Higuchi Takuro is an independent sociologist of social movements. He is researching the post-Seattle transformation of social movements in Japan, identifying with a tradition of activist anthropology after the reflexive turn, that maintains a deep engagement in reality.