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Michele Lamont 200x200

BJS Annual Lecture 2018
From "having" to "being": self worth and the current crisis of American society

Thursday 25 October 2018, 6.30-8pm
Old Theatre, Old Building
Speakers: Professor Michèle Lamont (Harvard) 
Chair: Dr Rebecca Elliott (LSE)

In the British Journal of Sociology's Annual Lecture 2018, Michèle will diagnose the challenges of neoliberal American society: the pitfalls of the American dream across classes, hardened group boundaries, and the need to invent new narratives of hope.

This event also forms part of the “New World (Dis)Orders” series, held in the run up to the LSE Festival, a week-long series of events taking place from 25 February to 2 March 2019, free to attend and open to all, exploring how social science can tackle global issues. 

Alondra Nelson

BJS Annual Lecture 2017 
The Social Life of DNA: racial reconciliation and institutional morality 

Thursday 26th October 2017, 6.30-8pm
Old Theatre, Old Building
Speaker: Professor Alondra Nelson (Columbia)
Chair: Professor Nigel Dodd (LSE)

In the British Journal of Sociology's Annual Lecture, Alondra Nelson will discuss her book The Social Life of DNA on how claims about ancestry are marshalled together with genetic analysis in a range of social ventures.

Twitter: #LSEBJS
@BJSociology
@LSEsociology 

Umit Cetin

BJS Early Career Prize Announcement 2017

The BJS Early Career Prize has been awarded to Umit Cetin for his paper "Cosmopolitanism and the relevance of ‘zombie concepts’: the case of anomic suicide amongst Alevi Kurd youth” (2017) which was originally published in BJS 68(2). The paper was derived from Umit’s doctoral research, which he undertook at the University of Essex, which focused on suicide amongst second generation Alevi-Kurdish young men in London. 

Dr Cetin accepted the Prize at the 2017 BJS Annual Lecture on 26th October 2017 from Editor-in-Chief Professor Nigel Dodd, who commented: "Umit’s paper delves deeply into classical sociology in order to get to grips with his own, rich ethnographic data on the Kurdish migrant community in London. It’s an excellent and original paper, which has something compelling to say about the diversity of trajectories that transnational migrants follow in a cosmopolitan city such as London, and about the formation of a new rainbow underclass".

British Journal of Sociology

Launch of the BJS Early Career Prize

We are delighted to announce the launch of the BJS Early Career Prize for authors of papers published in the BJS in the first five years from the date they are awarded their PhD. Consideration of papers is now open, and first award will be made in 2017.

 

Past news

British Journal of Sociology

Introduction of Special Sections

The BJS has introducied a new feature - Special Sections -  which consist of small clusters of 3-5 papers on a particular theme that may be either topical and  'in the news' or of cutting edge importance.  Read  the first special section, edited by Mike Savage and Christiana on Aesthetics and Social Change.

Thomas Piketty

Piketty Symposium - BJS December 2014 issue  

The BJS has published a symposium  dedicated to discussing Thomas Piketty's Capital in the Twenty-First Century. It brings together leading scholars from many social science disciplines,  based at the LSE,  to explore what has undoubtedly been the most significant academic text published during the past year. Contributors have been asked to reflect critically on Piketty's text: to assess its significance, evaluate its main arguments and recommendations and consider its broader implications for the analysis of inequality. 

Those taking part include: Mike Savage, John Holmwood, Tony Atkinson, Laura Bear, Diane Perrons, Jonathan Hopkins, David Piachaud, Frank Cowell, David Soskice, and Gareth Jones.  We are delighted to confirm that Thomas Piketty has also agreed to write a contribution to what promises to be a very thought-provoking issue. (Access to this issue will be free, i.e. no subscription will be necessary.)

Bruno Latour

BJS Prize 2014 - a comment from Bruno Latour

The 2014 BJS Prize was announced and presented at the BJS 2014 Annual Public Lecture on 6 November 2014. Bruno Latour commented on behalf of his co-authors (Pablo Jensen, Tommaso Venturini, Sebastian Grauwin and Dominique Bouille):

We are very honoured by your award especially because this is the first technical paper in English coming out of the medialab we created five years ago to connect social theory and what is now called 'big data' but that should really be called 'smart data' The medialab had been conceived largely to understand what Gabriel Tarde had in mind when he claimed that he could quantify social connections with better tools than statistics (he was himself the head of criminal statistics at the Ministry of Justice and his data set had been used by Marcel Mauss to feed Durkheim's book on suicide, a book where the said Durkheim  was more than happy to 'trash' Tarde's insights...) So, since  2004 I have assembled a multidisciplinary group with a biologist (it happens that bacteria are great for testing Tarde's theory!), cognitive scientists, media students and of course science studies scholars to see how we could 'operationalise'  Tarde with the web data newly available.  But it is only with the help of two physicists (PabloJensen and Sebastian Grauwin) and the medial lab researchers (Dominique Bouiller in media stdies and Tommaso Venturini in mapping controversies) that we have been able to see how the obscure notion of 'monads' could be made more amenable to empirical analysis.  To be complete I should add the technical director of the medialab, Paul Girard, whose role was essential in helping us through the long process.  There is of course a long way to go! Once again, we are very proud and thank you very much for such an honour.  Tarde vindicated by the Britts a century later, that's really great!

Bruno

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Ulrich Beck

Ulrich Beck

The editorial team, editorial board and staff of the BJS are all deeply saddened by the death of Ulrich Beck. Besides bing a member of our International Board since 2001, Professor Beck has been a highly significant presence in the Journal. He was one of our most successful authors, publishing 10 articles between 1995 and 2014 (free access to all his pieces has been arranged), and the founding speaker (in 2000) in the BJS Annual lecture series. His 2000 paper 'The cosmopolitan perspective: sociology of the second age of modernity' was one of the best-cited  articles in the Journal's  history, while the 2010 Special Issue he co-edited with Edgar Grand,'Varieties of second modernity: extra-European experiences and perspectives', continues to be highly successful.  Professor Beck was also a regular and generous assessor for articles submitted to the Journal,  producing comments for our authors that set impeccable standards both for their level of detail and their combination of critique and encouragement.

Many tributes (follow this link to the LSE  obituary page) will be paid to the importance of his work and scholarship, and we join with others  in underlining his lasting significance for sociology as a discipline. But in addition to this, we will remember his personal qualities, the generosity and conviviality of Professor Beck. He was a true friend to the Journal  who neverl failed to show interest and enthusiasm for what we were publishing and our future plans. His advice was as willingly given as it was gratefully received. We will miss him greatly.

British Journal of Sociology

BSA Conference Panel Meeting

Sixty years of Sociology in the BJS: Learning about sociology dthrough editing an academic Journall
Thursday 7 April 2011, 4.30=5.30 pm in the Hong Kong Theatre, London School of Economics
Panel Members: Richard Wright (EIC) and Frances Heidsohn (General Editor)

British Journal of Sociology

Special 60th Anniversary issue

The BJS Shaping Sociology over 60 Years

The BJS turns 60 this year. To mark this occasion the Editors have chosen two articles from each of the Journal's six decades that, in their view, have had a significant and enduring impact on sociology.  Each of the articles is accompanied by contemporary commentary that critically assesses its legacy.  While the articles chosen represent just a fraction of the many path-breaking contributions published in the BJS over the years, it is our hope that they will serve to amply demonstrate the Journal's central and longstanding role in fostering the sociological imagination.

Read the special issue

British Journal of Sociology

BJS Special Issue - September 2010

Editors: Ulrich Beck and Edgar Grande
'When a world order collapses, that's the moment when reflection should begin' (Beck and Grand 2010(4): 409). Contributors  to the special issue address key issues concerning the necessity of a cosmopolitan turn in social and political theory and research.

Read the special Issue

British Journal of Sociology

Micro-debate on 'violence'- BJS September 2009 Issue

Are human beings wired for violence? Randall Collins debates his provocative book Violence: A Micro-sociological Theory  with Richard B. Felson and Mark Cooney.

Annual public lectures

Aldon Morris

BJS 2016 Annual Lecture (20 October 2016):
Sociology of W.E. du Bois: Why du Bois is the Founder of American Scientific Sociology

Aldon Morris (Leon Forrest Professor of Sociology and African and American Studies, Northwestern University) discussed evidence from his book, The Scholar Denied: W.E.B. du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology, showing Du Bois, an influential 20th century black scholar, was the founding father of modern scientific sociology.

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Richard Swedberg

BJS 2015 Annual Lecture (15 October 2015): Before Theory Comes Theorizing or How to Make Social Science More Interesting

Professor Richard Swedberg argued that by paying more attention to what happens in actual practice before a theory is formulated - what may be called the methods of habits of theorizing - social science and sociology may be considerably improved. 

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Watch the video

Troy Duster

BJS 2014 Annual Lecture (6 November 2014):
A Post-Genomic Surprise: The Molecular Reinscription of Race in Science, Law and Medicine

In this thought-provoking lecture, Professor Troy Duster (University of California, Berkeley and New York University) explored the resurgence of the idea that racial taxonomies deployed to explain complex social behaviours and outcomes (such as crime, academic performance, and massive health disparities) have a biological and genetic basis.

Listen to the podcast 

Listen to the podcast interview

Read the public lecture debate

Beverley Skeggs

BJS 2013 Annual Lecture (17 October 2013): Value Beyond Value? Is Anything Beyond the Logic of Capital?

Many theories adopt the metaphors of capital to explore (e.g. Bourdieu), others propose that capital has subsumed all areas of life. Professor Beverley Skeggs (Goldsmiths, University of London) explores what looking through the logic of capital reveals and obscures.

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Read the article

Todd Gitlin

BJS 2012 Annual Lecture (18 October 2012): Occupy's Predicament

Professor Todd Gitlin (Columbia University): Occupy wants to be both a way or life for militants and the heart of a reform movement. Can these two vectors cohabit? 

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Listen to the podcast interview

Read the lecture debate

Yasemin Soysal

BJS 2011 Annual Lecture:
Citizenship, Immigration and the European Social Project

Dr Yasemin Soysal’s (University of Essex) lecture addresses the recently intensified European debates and policies on immigrant integration in the context of the broad changes in the conceptions and institutions of citizenship.

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John Hagan

BJS 2010 Annual Lecture (20 October 2010): The Displaced and Dispossessed of Darfur

In addition to 300,000 deaths, the Darfur Genocide has forced the displacement of about 3,000,000 people. John Hagan (Professor, Northwestern University and Co-director of the Center on Law & Globalization at the American Bar Foundation in Chicago) examines the temporal processes of this displacement to demonstrate how state-led attacks on food and water dislodged Black Africans in Darfur from February 2003 to August 2004.

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Anthony King

BBC Radio 4 'Thinking Allowed' (June 2010)

Laurie Taylor interviews Anthony King on his paper 'The Afghan War and 'postmodern' memory commemoration and the dead of Helmand' (BJS 61(1): 1-25).

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Loic Wacquant

BJS 2009 Annual Lecture (6 October 2009): Bringing the State Back in

In his lecture, Professor Loic Wacquant draws on classical theory, social history and a comparative analysis of the penalization of urban poverty in advanced societies at the century's turn to argue that we need to bring the penal state back to the centre of the sociology of social inequality, public policy and citizenship.

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Watch the video

Professor John Torpey

BJS 2009 ASA Annual Meeting Reception (San Francisco, 10 August 2009):
Religion: What Is To Be Done?

In his talk, Professor John Torpey will address recent developments in the sociology of religion and their significance for the discipline as a whole. In particular, he will discuss the debate over the nature and meaning of religion, the debate over secularization, and the recently discussed notion of a "post-secular" society. He will argue that these debates return us to vital issues that animated the discipline in its early formation and must return to the centre of our concern if the discipline is to remain relevant to contemporary life.

Robert Sampson

BJS 2008 Annual Lecture (21 October 2009): Disparity and Diversity in the Contemporary City

In this lecture, Robert Sampson (Henry Ford II Professor of the Social Sciences, Harvard University) looks at classic urban themes as they are manifested in the contemporary city, focusing on social reproduction of inequality, the meanings of disorder, and the link between the two.

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Professor Rob Sampson and Professor Richard Sennett, two of the world's foremost urban sociologists, debate the ideas presented at the BJS Lecture in two podcasts: A Brief History of Disorder and Getting to Grips with Disorder. Laurie Taylor interviews Rob Sampson on BBC Radio 4's Thinking Allowed.

Professor_Craig_Calhoun

BJS 2008 ASA Annual Meeting Reception (Boston, 3 August 2008): Altruistic Work: Humanitarian Assistance as Ethics, Politics and Profession

Professor Craig Calhoun: Humanitarianism provides an occasion for considering how bureaucratization, professionalization and early recruitment are changing a field previously more associated with "accidental" individual commitments in mid-career; and for exploring analogies such as working as a social movement organizer or indeed in other fields where a sense of calling may conflict with seeking a career or accepting demands for more calculating orientations.

Judith Butler

BJS 2007 Annual Lecture (30 October 2007): 
Sexual Politics: the Limits of Secularism, the Time of Coalition

In this lecture, Professor Judith Butler (University of California, Berkeley) considers the conditions for coalition that might exist between religious and sexual minorities through focusing on differential forms of state coercion. Without denying that clear tensions exist between religious traditions that condemn and forbid homosexuality and progressive sexual movements that tend to promote exclusionary conceptions of the secular, the lecture focuses on the importance of conceptions of cultural translation, antagonism, and the critique of state coercion to consider what 'critical coalition' might mean for religious and sexual minorities.' 

Read the public lecture debate

 

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