Conference Report: ‘Installed Knowledge’ at the Science History Institute, Philadelphia, PA

Originally published in Section Culture: Newsletter of the ASA Culture Section. Fall 2018. Vol. 30 Issue 3. ‘Installed Knowledge’ at the Science History Institute, Philadelphia, PA Joseph Klett, Science History Institute After lunch on Monday, August 13, while ASA attendees were cramming into the ersatz salons of the Pennsylvania Convention Center and Marriott hotel, a clustering of sociologists stole away to a museum just down the street. … Continue reading Conference Report: ‘Installed Knowledge’ at the Science History Institute, Philadelphia, PA

Conference Report: How Does Culture Work?

Originally published in Section Culture: Newsletter of the ASA Culture Section. Fall 2018. Vol. 30 Issue 3. How Does Culture Work? Theresa Hice Johnson, UC, Santa Cruz At Claudio Ezequiel Benzecry’s (Northwestern) session, “How Does Culture Work?”, Erika Summers-Effler (Univ. of Notre Dame), Chandra Mukerji (UC, San Diego), Clayton Childress (Univ. of Toronto), and Laura Grindstaff (UC, Davis) presented engaging original work related to the session’s goal … Continue reading Conference Report: How Does Culture Work?

Book Review: The Crisis of Journalism Reconsidered: Democratic Culture, Professional Codes, Digital Futures

The Crisis of Journalism Reconsidered (edited by Jeffrey C. Alexander, Elizabeth Butler Breese, Maria Luengo) is an important and necessary addition to cultural sociology. Continuing the call for a more focused and institutionalized media sociology, this volume demonstrates the utility of cultural sociology for media analysis. The wide-ranging pieces in this volume all consider (or reconsider, as the title suggests) the “crisis” of journalism. Continue reading Book Review: The Crisis of Journalism Reconsidered: Democratic Culture, Professional Codes, Digital Futures

Book Summary: Memory Activism: Reimagining the Past for the Future In Israel- Palestine

In my new book, Memory Activism: Reimagining the Past for the Future In Israel- Palestine (Vanderbilt UP, 2017), I examine how collective memories of a contested past can be used as a weapon of the weak for political change. The book presents and conceptualizes a surge in memories of a difficult past among civil society and grassroots groups around the world in the last two decades, which I term “memory activism.” Continue reading Book Summary: Memory Activism: Reimagining the Past for the Future In Israel- Palestine

Conference Report: History in Cultural Explanation

When I saw that Lyn Spillman’s (Univ. of Notre Dame) session, “History in Cultural Explanation,” was to feature no less than five papers, I wondered how on earth everyone would be able to give due diligence to their rich historical work within the allotted time. This might have been a problem with less capable presenters, but not with this group, whose presentations were all richly detailed and cogent and together demonstrated a useful array of concepts (cultural imaginaries, micro-practices, artefacts, continuity) and methods (corpus linguistics) for historical analysis, and convincingly demonstrated the irreplaceable role of historical analysis in the study of culture. Continue reading Conference Report: History in Cultural Explanation

Conference Report: Stigmatization and Discrimination

Michéle Lamont (Harvard) organized an informative session titled “Stigmatization and Discrimination”, in which she, Graziella Moraes D. Silva (The Graduate Institute, Geneva),  Jessica S. Wellburn (University of Iowa), and Joshua Guetzkow (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem) discussed findings from their book Getting Respect: Responding to Stigma and Discrimination in the United States, Brazil, and Israel. Throughout the session, presenters discussed how cultural context shapes perceptions of and responses to stigmatization and discrimination. Continue reading Conference Report: Stigmatization and Discrimination