In this episode we are joined by Dr. Christopher R. Matthews; a social scientist and epistemologist who specializes in the use of immersive research to understand ideas, people and society. Chris is the author of Doing Immersive Research Vol.1: Using Social Science to Understand the Human World and runs an impressive website with hours of content on methods, theory, and navigating academia. Chris introduces us to the work of Nick Crossley and reflects on the value of Crossley’s comprehensive synthesis of social theory centering the body. Chris also discusses his own approach to theory and his goals in doing research.

In this companion episode, Dr. Christopher R. Matthews walks us through a series of excerpts from Nick Crossley’s Intersubjectivity: The Fabric of Social Becoming (1996). Chris also provides us with screenshots of his own copy of the book so we can follow along with the text and see Chris’s approach to reading theory.


In this episode we are joined by Dr. Matthew Clair, an Assistant Professor of Sociology & Law at Stanford University. In our conversation, Matt introduces us to the work of W. E. B. Du Bois, discusses how Du Bois is one of the rare scholars who transcends sociology and the academy, and helps us understand how Du Bois’s approach to theory, relationship to sociology, and understanding of politics shifted across his career. Matt also introduces us to his own research on the experience of criminal defendants to illustrate the value of a Du Boisian approach.

In this episode, Dr. Michael DeLand, an Assistant Professor of Sociology & Criminology at Gonzaga University, joins us to read from Herbert Blumer’s article ‘Sociological Implications of the Thought of George Herbert Mead’ (1966).

Mike walks us through Blumer’s reading of Mead and discusses how the article offers a starting point to understand social construction and symbolic interaction.

Follow along HERE.


In this episode we are joined by Dr. Michael DeLand, an Assistant Professor of Sociology & Criminology at Gonzaga University. In our conversation, Mike introduces us to the work of Herbert Blumer and discusses how Blumer’s process-oriented theorizing of interaction and sense-making provide methodological inspiration and how Blumer’s critiques of more distant and structural ways of studying social life provided confidence in building his own research agenda. Mike also introduces his research on pickup basketball to illustrate a Blumer-inspired approach and the value of character-driven ethnographies.

In this episode we are joined by Dr. Jennifer McClearen, Assistant Professor of Sports, Media, and Culture in the Department of Radio-Television-Film at the University of Texas at Austin and author of the recently published Fighting Visibility: Sports Media and Female Athletes in the UFC. Jennifer introduces us to the work of Herman Gray and illustrates how his writings on the politics of representation transcend disciplinary boundaries through discussing Gray’s influence on her own study of mixed martial arts and marketing of women fighters.

In this episode Elizaveta Lepikhova, a second year MA student, teaching assistant, and supplemental instructor of sociology at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, discusses the work of Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann.  Elizaveta discusses their contributions to the sociology of everyday life, introduces her schema of explaining their ideas (see here), and reflects on first reading the work in Russian. She also talks about Berger and Luckmann’s influence on her own research on social time.

In this episode we are joined by Jonathan Wynn, Associate Professor and Department Chair of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and author of Music/City: American Festivals and Placemaking in Austin, Nashville, and Amherst. Jon introduces us to Erving Goffman, reflects on Goffman’s intellectual location and influence within the discipline, and discusses how his own work has built on Goffman’s call for a sociology of occasions.

*I also recommend checking out Jon’s frequent posts on the Everyday Sociology blog.


In this episode, we are joined by Fabio Rojas, professor of sociology at Indiana University Bloomington and author of Theory for the Working Sociologist (2017). Fabio introduces his approach to teaching sociological theory, discusses the four theoretical moves made within the discipline, and argues against the common practice of having students engage in lengthy readings of original texts and the disciplinary tendency to turn our favorite theorists into superheroes.


In this episode we are joined by Dr Alex Channon, Senior Lecturer in the School of Sport and Service Management at the University of Brighton. Alex introduces us to Stephen Lyng and his theorization of edgework. Alex illustrates the value of the concept through discussing his research on sport, violence, and interactions in the martial arts gym and how the concept helped inspire his Love Fighting Hate Violence project with Dr. Christopher Matthews.