Belmont University Research Symposium (BURS)


Pursuit of the Vote: Factors Utilized in Resisting Discrimination in Democratic Elections

Publication Date

Spring 2022


Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, College of


Political Science, Department of

BURS Faculty Advisor

Dr. Nathan Griffith

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation


Suffrage movements make use of various social and political factors to pressure their governments to expand the scope of voting rights. Using McAdam’s political process model, I will analyze how disenfranchised groups’ use of nonviolent demonstration, appeals to international pressure, and appeals to religion, affects their success. This will also highlight patterns that emerge when groups are willing to instigate violence in pursuit of their goals. Most studies examine these variables in the context of the pursuit of independence or revolution, whereas this study focuses on groups wishing to remain within a system given their desired reforms. I will analyze the data with a chi-square test to determine the significance based on a diverse set of cases of movements from different cultural backgrounds and time periods, such as women’s suffrage movements, Civil Rights Movements, and discrimination against the economically disadvantaged.

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