Titre de l'article
« The radicals watched from the sidelines or the ambivalent citizens’ relations to radicalism in a poor Montreal neighbourhood »
This analysis seeks to understand the appropriation or rejection of radicalism by two groups in a poor and immigrant neighbourhood of Montreal. Yet although both defend the same causes and share the same progressive dimension, one presents itself as a group of non-radical citizens while the other presents itself as a group of radical activists. So for each group, what do these different definitions of identity enfold: citizens versus militants, non-radicals versus radicals? More than the acceptance and the use of violence, the investigation’s results reveal that the divergences observed illustrate a different construction of the intersection between social class, cultural or ethnic identity, and global and local boundaries. These different ways of conceiving the intersection shape specific democratic practices and relations to politics. This analysis outlines the relevance of not restricting the reflection on radicalism to a focus on the repertoire of collective action but rather exploring its meanings for citizens in their daily lives and its implications for their relations to politics. Finally, it also offers a concrete picture of left-wing ideological tensions and debates and how some grass roots organizations try (or do not try) to resolve them.