Tag: Howard Becker

They just express it in a very different way: “Bourdieu’ s big idea was the champs, field, and mine was monde, world—what’s the difference?” Becker asks rhetorically. “Bourdieu’s idea of field is kind of mystical. It’s a metaphor from physics. I always imagined it as a zero-sum game being played in a box. The box is full […]

I’m reading Jodi Dean’s Blog Theory. It’s very good. However the vocabulary is frustrating me for the kind of reasons I discussed here. Take this example: Conceived in terms of drive, networked communications circulate less as potentials for freedom than as the affective intensities produced through and amplifying our capture. (pg 31) I’m fairly certain […]

One of many useful discussions in Howard Becker’s Writing for Social Scientists concerns ‘pluralistic ignorance”. He argues that this social psychological effect manifests itself in academia in relation to writing. Academic writing is a private and isolated endeavour, in which adversity (rejections by journals, lacerating criticism, endless requests for revision) are dealt with in isolation. The […]

I really like Steve Fuller’s arguments about ‘improvisation’. He rehearsed them yesterday in a post for Sociological Imagination about the originality of conference keynotes: For about ten years now, I’ve been arguing about the benefits of improvisational performance in academia, not simply as an experience for the audience but more importantly as a way of getting ‘experts’ […]

There’s a really nice post on Jon Rainford’s blog which talks about Howard Becker’s Writing for Social Scientists and its potential lessons for bloggers: This second edition examines some of the changes in technology in the twenty years since it was first published, especially in terms of ways in which computers have enhanced the ability […]

I came across this interesting little post on Becker’s site earlier this week. It’s worth a quick read for anyone interested in youth studies and/or Becker’s work. HT Kip Jones for the video of Becker playing at an ASA conference. Everyone (at least everyone above a certain age) knows–it is no more than common sense–that, in […]

The relation of people like us–researchers in the social sciences–to the people we gathered data on and wrote about was beginning to worry us all. We had left behind the innocence of being happy when we used the tricks we had been taught, and continued to teach to our students, to “get access” and “gain […]