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.

In this episode, we are joined by Dr. Jocelyn Viterna, Professor of Sociology and Director of Undergraduate Studies at Harvard University. Jocelyn introduces her approach to teaching sociological theory in a way that is honest about our intellectual roots and engages with the centrality of social evolutionary thought and racist ideology in early disciplinary writings. Jocelyn discusses the work of Herbert Spencer and also guides us through a 1909 book review from Frank Wilson Blackmar, the 9th President of the American Sociological Society (Association).

In this episode we are joined by Dr Anna Goulding, Senior Research Associate at Newcastle University, UK, and a scholar of art, identity, aging, and community. Anna introduces us to Elinor Ostrom, her theorization of co-production, and potential of the term to be weakened through popularization and misapplication. Anna illustrates the methodological value and challenges of co-production through reflecting on her own efforts at putting the theory into practice.

In this episode, Dr. Shai Dromi, a lecturer of Sociology at Harvard University and author of Above the Fray: The Red Cross and the Making of the Humanitarian NGO Sector (2020), joins us to read from Luc Boltanski’s co-authored article ‘The Sociology of Critical Capacity‘ (1999).

Shai introduces us to Boltanski and Thévenot’s analysis of “critical” moments, the process that follows, and the use of the six worlds of justification.

Follow along HERE.