Events, My Dear Boy, Events

According to legend, when Harold Macmillan was asked what he feared most as Prime Minister, he replied ‘Events, my dear boy, events’. The importance of events in the study of social movements and collective protest is the subject of this talk. The first part considers events as data, in a tradition that began with the collection of strike statistics in the nineteenth century and was invigorated in the 1960s with compilation of events from newspapers. The second part of the talk considers methods for the analysis of events, including the event-history analysis of diffusion.