Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: May 28, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963930 | Print ISBN: 9781412941655 | Online ISBN: 9781412963930| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Matthew W. Hughey
Riots arise when groups of people are committing, or may be about to commit, a variety of violent and/or unlawful acts in relation to an apparent grievance or complaint, and/or out of opposition to some form of authority or practice. Riots have occurred for many reasons: from poor working conditions, substandard living quarters, state domination and coercion, taxation, conscription, conflictual race relations, religious conflict, and the outcomes of sporting events. Sometimes riots are distinguished by type: race riots, police riots, prison riots, student riots, “hooliganism,” and mass street fighting. Generally, a riot is known by acts of violence, property damage, arson, looting, assault, and even murder. Riots are different from civil disobedience, as the latter is often directed at solving problems through nonviolent means. However, civil disobedience can transform into rioting. Riots can be distinguished from panic brought on by sudden terror or disturbances like disaster situations, such as a ...