Tag Archives: culture

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

Colter Ellis on the Boundary Labor of Beef Production

In this episode, we talk with Colter Ellis, Assistant Professor of Sociology and the Center for Rural Studies at Sam Houston University. Professor Ellis recently published a piece in The Sociological Quarterly that examines cattle producers’ work in conventional U.S. beef production. We talk through his ethnographic project into how cattle producers express emotional connection to cattle, but also treat cattle as economic assets.

Download Office Hours #87

Knowledge Production and Public Engagement (a Panel Discussion)

Nicholas Kristof’s recent critique of sociology, political science, and the humanities for effectively isolating themselves from larger and more public discussions of social issues has resulted in a myriad of academic responses. In this episode of the office hours we share the audio of a recent panel of faculty at the University of Minnesota including co-founder of the The Society Pages’ Doug Hartmann, responding to Kristof’s essay.

*If you are interested in hearing the question and answer session that followed this discussion, please follow this link to the Humphrey School of Public Affairs website.

Download Office Hours #85

 

Jennifer Rutherford on Zombies and a Cultural Obsession That Simply Won’t Die

Zombies have taken a special place in our cultural imaginary—appearing in countless cult classics, B-grade horror movies, best selling literary novels (and retellings of best-selling literary novels), record breaking television shows, and are the inspiration for themed parades and pub crawls around the globe. In this episode, Jennifer Rutherford, sociologist, literary scholar, and Deputy Director of the Hawke Research Institute at the University of Southern Australia, helps us understand what can be learned from the cultural obsession. We discuss the power of the zombie as metaphor, the unrestrained drive of the undead, and the allure of becoming zombie at gatherings and celebrations.

Download Office Hours #82

Natan Sznaider on Compassion

This episode we talk with Natan Sznaider about the Holocaust, memory, and human rights. He is the author of Jewish Memory and the Cosmopolitan Order and The Compassionate Temperament. We discuss his work on the relationship between modernity, capitalism, and the development compassion.

Download Office Hours #75