Author Archives: kyle

Belinda Wheaton on The Cultural Politics of Lifestyle Sports

Today we are joined by Belinda Wheaton. Belinda is a Principle Research Fellow in Sport and Leisure Cultures at the University of Brighton, UK. Belinda has published extensively on informal sports including articles, multiple edited volumes, and the recently published The Cultural Politics of Lifestyle Sports. We discuss why lifestyle sports are worthy of academic interest, race and California surf culture, and acts of political resistance.

Download Office Hours #97

Tristan Bridges on Hybrid Masculinities and Sexual Aesthetics

Today we are joined by Tristan Bridges. Tristan is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at The College at Brockport, State University of New York. Tristan researches and blogs on issues related to gender, sexuality, inequality, and space at Inequality by (Interior) Design and Feminist Reflections, the newest Community Page at The Society Pages. We discuss Tristan’s recently published article “A Very ”Gay” Straight?: Hybrid Masculinities, Sexual Aesthetics, and the Changing Relationship between Masculinity and Homophobia,” that is part of his larger book project tentatively entitled “Othering Other Men: Transformations in Gender and Politics among Men.”

 Download Office Hours #96

 

Peter McGraw and Joel Warner on Humor

In this episode, guest host Richie LeDonne speaks with Peter McGraw, a marketing and psychology professor at the University of Colorado Boulder, and journalist Joel Warner on their new book, The Humor Code. We talk about their travels around the world in search of what makes things funny, how comedians create humor, and how laughs are used to cope with tragedy and wield political power.

Download Office Hours #93

Discussing the Civic Imagination

Three sociologists, an anthropologist and a political scientist walk into a bar…and the result is a new book on the state, and emerging new forms, of civic participation in contemporary America.  While we seem to be living an age marked by political apathy and growing distrust for government and political institutions, there also seems to be a growing set of opportunities for Americans to “get involved” and “make a difference” in society.   From new forms of grass roots activism, to the increasing importance that social media plays in organizing political movements, the ways Americans participate in social change have dramatically evolved even while pessimism toward politics has reached new historical lows.

In the new book The Civic Imagination a group of ethnographers provide a detailed, account of how civically active Americans understand, talk and act on their different visions for social change.  Reporting on the ways that organizers envision their impacts on society, but also how they feel they have innovated new forms of participating, this multi-site ethnography challenges assertions that we live in a political age driven American apathy.  At the same time, this book reminds us of the limitations, if not blinders, of these new forms of political involvement, particularly revolving issues of inequality.  So before you download that new Social Justice mobile app, or organize your next Occupy event at the public library, take a listen to our interview with the authors of the Civic Imagination: Making a Difference in American Political Life

Gianpaolo Baiocchi is an Associate Professor of Sociology at New York University

Elizabeth A. Bennett is assistant Professor of International Affairs at Lewis & Clark College

Alissa Cordner is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Whitman College.

Peter Taylor Klein is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and Environmental and Urban Studies at Bard College.

Stephanie Savell is a Ph.D. candidate in Anthropology at Brown University.

Download Office Hours #90

Samira Kawash on Candy

This week we are joined by Samira Kawash to discuss her book Candy: A Century of Panic and Pleasure. Samira is a professor emerita at Rutgers University. During our conversation we discuss the important but ignored place candy has occupied in the American conscious, the many shifting meanings attached to the sugary treats, and what can be learned from the increasingly blurred line between food and candy. You can read more of Samira’s work at www.CandyProfessor.com.

Download Office Hours #88