The Sociological Review Blog

The Sociological Craft Project

January 2018

In the appendix to his famous The Sociological Imagination, C. Wright Mills offered a detailed description of his working practices as a guide for aspiring sociologists. He argued that we need “conversations in which experienced thinkers exchange information about their actual ways of working” if students of sociology are to receive a “useful sense of method and theory”. Much has changed, within the discipline and the university, since Mills wrote this book nearly sixty years ago. Many would argue the challenges of sociological work have only increased, as the academy has been overtaken by audit culture and academic labour has become more intensive. Furthermore, the practical tools we rely on in our intellectual craft have become more extensive and change at a faster rate.

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Launching Our Kick Start Grants Scheme

January 2018

As part of its support for early career researchers, The Sociological Review Foundation has allocated an annual budget of £30,000 for ‘kick start’ grants.

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Challenging ‘Crime’ and ‘Crime Control’ in Contemporary Europe

January 2018

The last 13-16 September 2017, thanks to the support provided by the Sociological Review to Early Career Researchers, I had the opportunity to attend the 17th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology in Cardiff, UK Challenging ‘Crime’ and ‘Crime Control’ in Contemporary Europe. On arrival, I met a colleague who shared with me the following episode: The first time she attended an international conference, she was shocked by the advice of a senior researcher she was with who told her: “Go to buy a highlighter and let’s get a coffee”. She was confused until discovering that the purpose of this advice was aimed at the exercise of carefully analyzing the conference programme in order to choose the panels and lectures that she wanted to attend. Arriving at the ESC conference in Cardiff, this recommendation – and the highlighter –proved very useful in navigating more than 1000 delegates and speakers from 60 countries, even in spite of the fact that the ESC had launched an app. The Annual Conference of the ESC was a great opportunity not only to learn from papers and lectures, but also to catch up with colleagues, meet new ones, and discuss future lines of collaboration.

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Writing Fiction as a Sociologist: an Interview with Ann Oakley

January 2018

I have always written fiction, beginning as a small child. I wrote little stories and poems as soon as I could write. Small children, of course, don't understand the difference between writing fiction and writing nonfiction, which makes their narratives particularly charming. As a teenager I published a few short stories and poems. I always wanted to be a writer; I didn't define what sort of writer, but I think all the early ambitions were about writing novels. I didn't do a literature degree at university because various people said that people who wanted to write should study something else. After university this story is told in my book Taking it Like a Woman I wrote a couple of novels but couldn't get them published, so I decided to do sociology/social research for a few years instead.

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Care And Policy Practices

January 2018

The Sociological Review is thrilled to be launching the latest of their 2017 monographs, Care and Policy Practices. This podcast was recorded at the launch event for the book, including talks by the guest editors Vicky Singleton (Lancaster University), Claire Waterton (Lancaster University) and discussants Richard Freeman (University of Edinburgh) and Joanna Latimer (University of York).

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