In this episode we are joined by Jaclyn Wypler, a PhD candidate in Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Jaclyn joins us to reflect on her shift from not being a fan of theory to being an organizer of the 2020 Junior Theorists Symposium. Jaclyn shares what her approach to theory and cookies have in common and uses her research on the experience of queer farmers in rural United States to demonstrate the value of a practice-oriented approach to engaging with the sociological canon.

In this episode we are joined by Ricarda Hammer, a PhD candidate in Sociology at Brown University and a Graduate Fellow at Brown’s Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice. Her work has been published in Sociological Theory, Sociology of Race and EthnicityPolitical Power and Social Theory, and Teaching Sociology.

Ricarda discusses the powerful insight Stuart Hall provides on a wide-range of sociological areas of inquiry including culture, identity, race, and rethinking the relationship between the metropole and the colony. Ricarda also reflects on joys and transformative experience of engaging with Hall’s work.

In this episode we are joined once again by Seth Abrutyn, Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of British Columbia. Seth joins us to discuss what sociology can potentially add to the public conversation that surrounds COVID-19. In our conversation, Seth touches on the value of a number of theorists including Emile Durkheim, Erving Goffman, Jaak Panksepp.

In this episode, Amy Guptill, Professor of Sociology at The College at Brockport, State University of New York, discusses her recent discovery of Niklas Luhmann and systems theory. In particular, Amy reflects on how Luhmann avoids some of the negatives associated with his intellectual mentor Talcott Parsons and provides a powerful tool to better conceptualize food production and consumption.

*This is the final of three GTaC episodes hosted by Alysha Rios, undergraduate sociology major at SUNY Brockport. Thanks Alysha.

In this episode we are joined by Richard Pringle, Professor of Sport, Health and Physical Education at Monash University. Richard reflects on the challenge of transitioning from reading kinesiology to reading Michel Foucault, discusses how Foucault provided him with a lens to understand pain and gender on the rugby pitch, and offers advice on the importance of engaging with the original text when employing the ideas of a social theorist.


In this episode we are joined by Erin Metz McDonnell, Kellogg Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Notre Dame and author of the recently published Patchwork Leviathan: Pockets of Bureaucratic Effectiveness in Developing States. Erin introduces us to the “budgetary unit”–a powerful, but under-utilized Weberian term–and discusses how she expands Weber’s theorization of bureaucracy through her fieldwork in Ghana. Erin also offers valuable reflection on what it means to be engaging with texts that are now over a century old in both her research and her teaching.

In addition, Erin was kind enough to provide interested listeners with links to some of the readings mentioned in our conversation:

From Weber himself:

On Max, Marianne, and W.E.B.

… in which Howard Becker reports on interviewing Marianne

And from our guest:

Our guest today is Daniel Winchester, Associate Professor of Sociology at Purdue University. Dan tells us about his initial encounter with Pierre Bourdieu’s famously dense writings, his application of Bourdieu’s ideas in his Masters thesis on Islamic faith, and his more recent turn to the American Pragmatism to supplement his use of Bourdieu in studying the process of converting to Eastern Orthodox Christianity.

*Dan is the recent winner of the American Sociological Association’s Junior Theorist of the Year Award for his co-authored paper “Talking Your Self into It: How and When Accounts Shape Motivation for Action

**Make sure to check out the accompanying video made by SUNY Brockport sociology major Simone Graham – https://youtu.be/1FXzNctRFbw


In this episode, Alysha Rios interviews Elliot Weininger, Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology at SUNY Brockport, about Pierre Bourdieu. Elliot reflects on how Bourdieu offered a bridge between his philosophical interests and his quantitative training and explains how his interest in central concepts like cultural capital led to a series of collaborations with Annette Lareau researching the education system.

Our guest for this episode is Pirkko Markula, Professor of Kinesiology, Sport, and Recreation at the University of Alberta. Pirkko takes on the challenge of discussing both Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze in a single podcast. Pirkko explains how reading them together offers insight into embodied practices and reveals more ethical possibilities. Something that Pirkko herself explores in both her research activities and fitness classes.


The guest for this episode is Anna Hickey-Moody, a Professor of Media and Communications at RMIT University and an Australian Research Council Future Fellow. Anna is also the author of the recently published Deleuze and Masculinity. In our conversation, Anna discusses both the challenges and charms of Gilles Deleuze and how she has built on the concepts of affect and assemblages in her own research on youth education, art, and community.

“There is something about their writing style that I could be with. One is alone in a room with them for a long time. One is listening to what they are saying and speaking back to them…Also, I’d be damned if I wasn’t going to understand them.”