Resistances against dams are deeply emotional and transformative experiences, which have been often analyzed at macro and organizational level. The aim of this paper is to present an analysis at micro level by analyzing the emotional dimension of these struggles in order to understand the viewpoint of inhabitants who defend their territories. Based on the literature on emotion and social movements, and in-depth interviews with people who participated in three resistances against dams in Spain and Mexico, the analysis focuses on: 1) the role of place attachment, which is a particular bond that helps us understand environmental struggles, and 2) the role of the injustice frame and moral emotions, which lead people to fight even in these cases. This article seeks to prove that the analysis of the emotional dimension is vital to understand the socio-cultural processes that lead people to defend their territories and how these experiences can be transformative.
Resistance movements against dams; grassroots environmental struggles; Emotions; Place attachment