For me global sociology is about untangling and recognizing the relations that surpass national borders and connect people in very intimate and vital ways. This involves looking into care relations that span transnationally, as well as between species.
Doing global sociology for me means better understanding why and how the process of globalization invites us to “think globally” (Morin, Wieviorka, Beck, Bauman, Rocher). It is also about testing the concepts forged from Western cultural experience from African material and, in doing so, exploring to what extent the social dynamics of the South inform global processes. In this, this networking allows us to better appreciate how different works carried out in diverse contexts resonate with each other and improve our knowledge of our universe.
Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity
Doing global sociology for me means to re-centre the narratives and experiences of people living in diverse social worlds and to use these experiences as a starting point to understand and conceptualise social relationships in a globally connected world. This involves critically questioning taken-for-granted (and predominantly Euro-American) categories and assumptions and fostering transregional, historicised, and collaborative forms of knowledge production.
Doing global sociology for me means examining transregional and transcontinental interdependencies and inequalities, and analyzing them in their historical context and from a processual perspective. It also means recognizing that the social sciences are Eurocentric and have neglected other knowledge currents and traditions – and that this calls for an important change on various levels of scientific work (practical, epistemological, theoretical…). As I see it, the aim of global sociology is to build theories that are based on empirical research in, and comparison of, very different societal, historical and regional contexts. This requires collaboration and exchange between researchers from different parts of the world.
Doing global sociology for me means working towards the acceptance in the discipline that sociological research in every social context can yield in general insights. Teaming up with colleagues in the network is for me a great way to strengthen this idea.
Rosenheim Technical University of Applied Sciences
What interests me in global sociology are questions of transnational interconnectedness and their empirical study. Doing global sociology for me means working with international colleagues on local and global social issues.
The network on globalizing sociology provides a platform to advance this interrogation of the tradition I was raised in and to develop a post/decolonial approach that I can incorporate into my research on social fields and conflicts in the South.
Doing global sociology for me means to explore how even vastly different empirical findings, gathered in different parts of the world, may speak to shared conceptual and theoretical concerns; to examine the ways in which uninterrogated ethnocentric assumptions may block the way to theoretical progress, and to uncover the historicity of knowledge production while remaining faithful to sociology’s emancipatory promises.
Doing global sociology for me means connecting and framing local research within the regional and international scenario of social sciences, and acknowledging that academia follows trends which must be scrutinized and analyzed in order to produce critical research.
Doing global sociology for me is a great opportunity to bring to the fore perspectives from the Global South to the development of a global perspective to social phenomenon, especially given that the perspective of the Global North has dominated the analysis of social phenomenon.
My research interests are sociology of religion, transnational sociology, and urban sociology. One of my research projects was to investigate how cultural and economic forces intertwined in urban re-structuring in New York and Shanghai, based on urban ethnography and census data. My current research is to investigate the expansion of Chinese Buddhism in the Western cities.
My core interest is in sociological and historical research to study the relationships between state, technology (data-information-digital) and society. Keenly focusing on qualitative research methods for building methodological and conceptual frameworks, I am trying to aptly grasp newer technological realities in the Global South. I believe that these relationships can be extensively explored with novel research methods, conceptual frameworks and theory building, being contextual, and specific to the social, cultural and political aspects of the countries in the Global South.
It is because of this reason my research work strongly intersects with the network on Global Qualitative Sociology.
My interest in global sociology is steeped in a great desire to examine historical realities related to the production of knowledge. Ibn Khaldun’s marginal position in the historical narrative concerning his contribution to the development of sociology, the general denial of the production of knowledge in Africa and the tacit superimposing of the European university’s pre-eminence as the foundational university, whereas ancient universities predating the European model existed in Africa, are some of the reasons why I am engaged in global sociology. History is fundamental to sociology and the historical narrative method contributes to confronting the Eurocentric view which sociological discourse has venerated since the 19th century. Global sociology presents me with the opportunity to delve into the conceptualization of critical categories of any society. More significantly, the work of the Globalizing Sociological Theory Network empowers me to leverage this platform by engaging with scholars to enter into debates on these questions and elaborate my ideas in the global sociological discourse.
Doing global sociology means to me engaging with complex methodological questions (what is “empirical" and what is “theoretical” and to what degree is it possible to distinguish between the two? What analytical work is being unwittingly absorbed by the conceptual frameworks we use?) and to do so collectively in the spirit of critical eclecticism.
Maria Sibylla Merian Centre Conviviality-Inequality in Latin America
Doing global sociology for me means not only investigating the circulation of knowledge from a transregional and comparative perspective, analyzing entanglements and asymmetries between the local and the global, but also the effort to situate myself in research as part of an unequal and diverse academic and scientific production system in which the north has tended to ignore the south. The south-north dialogue of sociologists is fundamental for a global sociology.
My current project focuses on displacement and dispossession as a point of entry into an analytical engagement with urban regeneration and the implications of liberal time to marginalized spaces worldwide. My grounded research on indigenous and marginalized geographies unveils the way global urban theories and practices conceal colonial-power relations, while disregarding grounded knowledge. Hence my studies aim to contribute to the production of a “rooted” knowledge. My research has been published in Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space, Time & Society, and GeoJournal, among others.
Doing global sociology for me means to hold “undisciplined” conversations integrating knowledges produced by differently positioned people from across the world. A constant and collective exercise in relational memory, intersectionality and decoloniality, sociology gone global reconnects the ties cut by dominant Eurocentric and methodologically nationalist research traditions. In doing so, global sociology has the potential to adequately understand and tackle the entangled inequalities with which our world has been fraught.
Doing global sociology for me means addressing questions about the challenges and the need to re-think and re-do practicing sociology in the context of complexly interwoven social histories and social realities, diversity of perspectives, and hierarchies of knowledge and knowledge production – especially on the level of empirical research as well as academic dialogue and exchange
Doing global sociology for me means to bring into the picture what matters for an invisibilized majority, the many people whose life worlds do not fit into the Eurocentric gaze of modern sociological thought. It means to build knowledge about societies starting from their stories and perspectives. Doing global sociology unravels the embeddedness of seemingly objective concepts to describe our worlds - their embeddedness into histories and standpoints from which they are developed and circulated.
The members of our network write and think about societal dynamics from a variety of standpoints. I think this is an excellent starting ground for a qualitative global sociology “in the making”: I am looking forward to un-learn together the usual analytical frameworks, to connect lived experiences that we observe in different localities and to innovate conceptual thinking and lenses through which we describe our contemporary world.
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