In this episode we are joined by Anas Karzai, lecturer in the Department of Sociology and coordinator of the criminology program at Laurentian University.  Anas joins us to speak about the subject of his book Nietzsche and Sociology: Prophet of Affirmation. We discuss why Friedrich Nietzsche has not received the attention he deserves within sociology, how his writings offer a valuable critique of the dialectic and the narrative of progress, and his under-appreciated critique of racism.


In this episode, Dr. Shamus Khan joins us to read from Leviathan: Or the Matter, Forme and Power of a Commonwealth, Ecclesiasticall and Civil, the 1651 Thomas Hobbes classic work of social theory.

Shamus shares his advice on reading theory fast, helps us understand how Hobbes conceptualized social contract theory and the relationship between violence and equality, and models how to center the colonial roots of foundational texts.

Follow along HERE (Chapter 13, page 81)


In this episode, we are joined by Shamus Khan, professor in and chair of the sociology department at Columbia University. Shamus discusses his approach to teaching the sociological canon, the importance of focusing on moments of racist and colonial discourse as central to, rather than in spite of, the core theories, and the value of directly linking the learning of methods and theory.

In this episode we are joined by Dr. Saida Grundy, Assistant Professor of Sociology and African-American Studies at Boston University and author of the forthcoming book Manhood Within the Margins: Promise, Peril and Paradox at the Historically Black College for Men. In our wide-ranging conversation, Saida discusses how the 1899 Du Bois classic, The  Philadelphia Negro, provided a model for studying race and a model for how to do sociological research, what it means to center Du Bois as a founder of sociology, and his relationship to black women scholars of the time. Saida also reflects on the value of Du Bois for her own work on black masculinity, reactive respectability politics, hierarchies from within the veil, and racialized rape culture.

Our guests today are Hannah McCann, a Lecturer in Cultural Studies at the University of Melbourne and Whitney Monaghan, an Assistant Lecturer in Film and Screen Studies at Monash University. Hannah and Whitney are co-authors of the recently published textbook Queer Theory Now. In our wide-ranging conversation, we discuss the challenge of defining queer theory, the relationship between queer and feminist theory, and think through the importance of time.

In this episode, Dr. Angela Jones joins us to read from The Souls of Black Folk, the 1903 W.E.B Du Bois classic work of social theory.

This is the first of a new type of Give Theory a Chance podcast where contemporary social theorists introduce us to the specific passages that inspired them and help us make sense of the text. When possible, I will include a link (the link) to a pdf so the listener can follow along.

I hope this offers a useful aid for people first encountering these important ideas and hope it offers others the perfect chance to re-connect with favorite readings from the past.




In this episode we are joined by Dr. Angela Jones, Associate Professor of Sociology at Farmingdale State College, State University of New York and author of the recently published book Camming: Money, Power, and Pleasure in the Sex Work Industry. Angela discusses the importance of recognizing W.E.B. Du Bois as a founder of the discipline, his under-appreciated methodological contributions, and the clarity of his prose. Angela also reflects on the value of Du Bois for her own work both as a scholar and as an activist.

In this episode we are joined by Dr. Rachel O’Neill, a Fellow in the Department of Media and Communications at The London School of Economics and Political Science. Rachel discusses the work of contemporary theorist Rosalind Gill.  Rachel introduces us to Gill’s writings on post-feminism and mediated intimacy. Rachel also demonstrates the value of the two concepts through discussion of her own research on the seduction community, which is the subject of her 2018 book, Seduction: Men, Masculinity and Mediated Intimacy.

In this episode we are joined by Dr. Madeleine Pape, a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Sociology and Science in Human Culture program at Northwestern University. Madeleine introduces us to the work of Anne Fausto-Sterling and discusses how Fausto-Sterling demands a move beyond a strictly binary model of sex and encourages a shift away from static understandings of being. Madeleine also reflects on how discover Fausto-Sterling’s work was particularly impactful due to her own background as an elite athlete who competed for Australia at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and the 2009 World Championships in Track and Field in Berlin.