Whose Public Sociology?: The Subaltern Speaks, but Who Is Listening?

Evelyn Nakano Glenn

in Public Sociology

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2007 | ISBN: 9780520251373
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520940758 | DOI:
Whose Public Sociology?: The Subaltern Speaks, but Who Is Listening?

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Burawoy's focus on economics and political science as sociology's main competitors requires a “rhetorical sleight of hand that attributes his disciplinary selection criteria to space limitations” that exclude such fields as geography, history, and psychology. This chapter extends this argument, noting that for many scholars, disciplinary boundaries are counterproductive. It argues that Burawoy's essay is marked by a bias toward looking sideways at peers and upward at superiors, to elaborate on sociology's relation to the “peer” disciplines of economics and political science. The chapter argues that academic sociology professionalized itself by pushing public sociology out of the discipline. It holds that Burawoy's defense of sociology is a defense of privilege, an effort that will reproduce inequalities among disciplines.

Keywords: economics; political science; Michael Burawoy; academic sociology; geography; history

Chapter.  6965 words. 

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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