The future of sociology: extinction, stagnation or evolution?
By Richard Jenkins
One, very likely, first response to this paper’s title might be: ‘Why even bother to ask that question?’ Such a response would be completely understandable, but wrong. There are several reasons why it is appropriate to speculate, in a critical frame of mind, about the future of sociology. In the first place, that we should not take for granted the continuing existence of anything is a sensible ontological precaution. As humans, and despite everything that we know to the contrary, we tend to live our lives as if the world that is presently around us is a more-or-less permanent state of affairs; but nothing is actually permanent. This is the shared lesson of all the academic disciplines: everything changes. Nothing persists in an unchanged state indefinitely. Continue reading
Professor Richard Jenkins was recently invited to join our PGR reading group discussion of Pierre Bourdieu. Using Richard’s text as a starting point, the discussion covers the enduring popularity of Bourdieu in contemporary sociology and the wider state of social theory. You can listen to the group below. Very many thanks to Richard for joining us and we hope you enjoy the discussion. Continue reading
Is it enough for social research to be interesting to merit its conduct? Undoubtedly the social world produces weird and wonderful phenomena with which sociologists can engage. However, we live in a world in which there are multifarious crevasses of inequality, both material and symbolic, in which the global economy operates in a perpetually risky manner, to the extent that chaos is the new norm, and in which human rights violations are all too common, and all too often perpetrated by nation-states. As such sociology should refrain from seriously researching the facets of social life that are interesting, but unimportant. Continue reading
The PGR conference committee is pleased to invite postgraduate researchers to our annual social science conference entitled Translation and Transformation, to be held on Wednesday 5th June, 2013 here in the Department of Sociological Studies at The University of Sheffield. We are pleased to announce that this year our key note speaker will be Professor Richard Jenkins.
Call for submissions
We are inviting proposals for papers and posters aimed at exploring your research to date and encourage your presentations to be innovative in their delivery, organisation and range of topics – with special emphasis on how they might convey your message to other doctoral students. Continue reading