Tag: Uncategorized

This excellent essay by Jan-Werner Müller in the London Review of Books raises an important issue about the forms of political mobilisation facilitated by social media:  Trump has called himself the Hemingway of the 140 characters. He has ‘the best words’. He loves Twitter, he says, because it’s like having one’s own newspaper, but without […]

From One Market Under God, by Thomas Frank, loc 2230: For all the revulsion expressed by books like Liar’s Poker and Barbarians at the Gate, the dominant note was starstruck wonderment at these “masters of the universe,” at their millions and their manses, at their Gulfstream jets and Mercedes cars, at the high quality of […]

In Zygmunt Bauman’s Legislators and Interpreters, he identifies two different contexts in which the role of the ‘intellectual’ is performed and two different strategies which develop in response to them: The legislator makes “authoritative statements” which “arbitrate in controversies of opinions and which selects those opinions which, having been selected, become correct and binding”. The […]

In the last few weeks, I’ve written a few times about the epistemological questions posed by post-democracy. This notion put forward by Colin Crouch sees transitions within mature democracies as involving a hollowing out of democratic  structures rather than a dramatic shift to non-democracy. As he described it in a recent interview I did with […]

I love this expression from Peter Sloterdijk’s Selected Exaggerations loc 944: Carrying the weight of the world is an art that can be practised in many different ways. I think it is right to say that it is fundamentally the same art. It consists of answers to the burdensome nature of life … This is […]

How do we live with theoretical pluralism? It’s too often a matter of ‘peace treaties’, avoiding fights by moving disagreements off-stage. But if we do this then are we really occupying the same argumentative space? I don’t think we are and the intellectual value of theoretical pluralism is lost if we find ourselves in such […]

30 November-2 December 2016, Leiden (Scheltema, Marktsteeg 1) Conference organisers Sarah de Rijcke, Centre for Science and Technology Studies, Leiden University Björn Hammarfelt, University of Borås, Sweden | Leiden University Alex Rushforth, Centre for Science and Technology Studies, Leiden University Scientific committee Mark Carrigan, University of Warwick Tereza Stöckelová, Czech Academy of Sciences Filip Vostal, […]

I just spotted New Philosopher for the first time, in an airport newsagents. I’ve occasionally bought or subscribed to Philosopher’s Magazine and Philosophy Now in the past. That makes three popular magazines about philosophy aimed at a general audience. Why such an abundance of philosophy magazines and yet no comparable sociology publications? Is it because the […]

Some thoughts after yesterday’s public sociology day in Manchester: The meaning of ‘public sociology’ is not always self-evident and the enthusiasm of the impulse expressed through the term can cloud its meaning yet further. We need to be clear about what we are doing and why. This clarity can help us negotiate the ambivalent spaces […]

My experience of watching the literature on asexuality spiral from a handful of papers ever through to new ones each month has left me fascinated by how quickly ‘the literature’ can become unmanageable. Within a relatively small and nascent field, it’s possible to grasp ‘the literature’ as a totality. But past a certain point, circumscribing […]

We’ve recently had some cancellations for the forthcoming event, The Practice of Public Sociology: Sociological Review Early Career Event.  If you would like one of these places, please registered here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-practice-of-public-sociology-sociological-review-early-career-event-tickets-28652394082  The Practice of Public Sociology Manchester Digital Laboratory, November 24th, Manchester For over a decade public sociology has been a mainstream topic of discussion […]

Special Issue, State Crime Journal (May 2018) STATE CRIME AND DIGITAL RESISTANCE Sign up for 6th January 2017 workshop here: http://statecrime.org/state-crime-research/call-for-papersworkshop-special-issue-of-state-crime-journal/ This special issue of State Crime seeks to investigate how changing patterns of state crime are being shaped by the massive growth of a digital communications infrastructure which permeates everyday life for billions of […]

There’s a pervasive idea that social critique must be slow, necessitating withdrawl from the world in order to carefully pierce through the veil of appearances. There’s a kernel of truth in this, in so far as that hasty analysis risks both superficiality and the reproduction of dominant frames of reference.  A whole sequence of events […]

I just received this spam press release about a new study conducted in a French business school.  As a serious empirical question: what motivates this? My prima facie assumption would be that an institutional imperative to maximise the external impact of internal activity (“we have to get our research out there!) combined with a deep […]

25th November 2015, 11:00 to 17:00 WT0.05, University of Warwick This workshop and symposium will explore the, mostly implicit, conceptions of the human, humanity and human nature that underpin various contemporary conceptions of social life. In the context of much-publicised post-human futures, this is an invitation to reconsider the idea that social life itself is predicated […]