At the time this issue of Global Dialogue was being edited the US elections were one of the main topics in the media around the globe. In the section Talking Sociology Margaret Abraham conducts an interview with the sociologist and Black Lives Matter activist S.M. Rodriguez. It gives insight into the history of resistance against racism in the US, and the intersection of social inequalities and concerns of social justice motivating this social movement.
In regard to the developments around the elections Peter Evans and Michael Burawoy organized our first symposium on the plight and possibilities in the US. The articles cover historical perspectives and analyze the effects of economic and political developments of the last decade. Facing the events that took place in Washington in January 2021 the authors also look to the future and discuss what might be done to make change possible.
In our second symposium, focused on Chinese migration in Europe and organized by Fanni Beck and Pál Nyiri an overview of the history and present of the successive waves of Chinese migration to Europe are presented. While some contributions focus on migration movements in the 20th century, others deal with the significant changes in the social and economic status of Chinese immigrants in the 21st century.
Over the last years, we have been witnessing the increasing influence of far-right movements, parties and regimes for which the effects of neoliberalism, economic crises, unsolved problems of social inequalities and migration have been windows of opportunity. In the theoretical section, Walden Bello compares facets of the political programs, practices, and leadership of the far-right in the Global North and South.
Our section presenting the sociology of different regions focusses on Latin America. Esteban Torres organized a collection of articles inviting us to a voyage through social theories discussed and developed by prominent researchers, most of them active members of the working group Teoría social y realidad latinoamericana (Social Theory and Latin American Reality) of the Latin American Council of Social Sciences (CLACSO).
In our third issue of Global Dialogue in 2020, the section ‘Talking Sociology’ features an interview with the most renowned journalist Robert Kuttner, who reads Karl Polanyi’s work for today. Starting from the political and economic situation at the beginning of the twentieth century the interview discusses current trends in globalization, the need for strong national economies to strengthen democratic decision making, and issues of inclusion and exclusion in times of increasing international migration.
Our first symposium takes up one of the pressing issues of our time: climate change. The articles discuss social effects of climate change that are not readily associated with ecological issues, and sketch possible alternatives to further environmental destruction through capitalism.
As we write, the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts still dominate much of the world, albeit in different ways. With contributions from India and Europe on issues, ranging from live-in care, charity, and migration to the possibilities of public sociology during lockdown this special section offers a glimpse into the current discussions in our field.
The COVID-19 crisis is also the starting point for Syed Farid Alatas’ profound reflection on the role and impact of sociological thought and theory in the broader society.
This issue features a tribute to Yogendra Singh, a pioneer of Indian sociology who passed away this year. His research on modernization and tradition in post-colonial India was groundbreaking.
Three contributions aim at re-imagining society and reflect on the current developments as well as on the significance of sociology. S.A. Hamed Hosseini and Barry Gills take up a transformative perspective while Shelene Gomes and Scott Timcke discuss how to approach society from a sociological perspective.
Our regional focus highlights sociological research from Sri Lanka. Put together by Siri Hettige, this section shows the vibrant debates in the country.
The COVID-19 pandemic and crisis dominates the discussions and developments in many countries around the world. The so-called hotspots or the gap between countries of the Global North and South show how social inequalities matter. It is not only healthcare that will be a matter of concern in the next years but also the succeeding economic, social and political developments. In some countries the economic crisis amounts to a deep ongoing social crisis, and/or democracy is put at risk by restrictive politics. With this issue Global Dialogue starts a series on the pandemic and its meaning for the society and for sociology and invites authors from different countries and regions to contribute their insights. To start this series, three authors share their reflections on COVID-19 and its effects.
In our section ‘Talking Sociology’ Sari Hanafi conducts an interview with Alain Caillé, co-founder of the convivialist movement and manifesto. Caillé criticizes the neoliberal standpoint, describes the roots of “Convivialism,” and shows why and how it functions as an “empty signifier” bringing together people who hope and strive to create a “post-neoliberal world.”
In the last years we have been witnessing a lot of protests against anti-democratic tendencies, neoliberal developments, and the effects of market-driven economic and social inequalities. New social movements and protest forms have emerged and challenged the politics of the establishment in many regions of the world. Our first symposium – with contributions by Ngai-Ling Sum, Michalis Lianos, Jorge Rojas Hernández, Gunhild Hansen-Rojas, and Rima Majed – sheds light on the situation in Hong Kong, France, Chile, Lebanon, and Iraq.
The second symposium highlights how media and communication together with the drive for profit shape our society. The articles put together by Marlen van den Ecker and Sebastian Sevignani cover different aspects and effects of the digitalization and marketization of communication – from social media users acting as unpaid laborers and the role of data in capitalist ownership and accumulation to the new digital workers in China and the restructuring of media systems – and show how these processes go hand in hand with the transformation of capitalism in different parts of the world.
The section on ‘Theoretical Perspectives’ also takes up the subject of information and communication technologies. Francis Nyamnjoh reflects on the West and Central African idea of human beings embedded in an ontology of “the incompleteness and compositeness of being human” and shows how this is affected by the use of technologies.
For our section focused on the sociology of a particular country or region Filomin Gutierrez has taken the responsibility to invite colleagues from the Philippines to present important sociological issues and findings. The result is an impressive collection of pieces from urban studies, public sociology and more.
The articles included in our Open Section address important sociological topics such as the gendering of open space, labor internationalism, finance capitalism and the reaction to right-wing populism.
In this issue’s interview, labor historian Raquel Varela looks back at Portugal’s Carnation Revolution of April 1974. She discusses why it is important to tell world events “from below,” taking up working people’s perspectives and contributions and addresses the lasting impacts of the revolution left in Portugal’s social and economic fabric.
In July 2020, sociologists and social scientists from all over the world will participate in the IV ISA Forum of Sociology in Porto Alegre, Brazil to discuss their research and perceptions on social transformations in light of four main challenges of the 21st century: democracy, environment, inequalities, and intersectionality. In his article Geoffrey Pleyers, President of the Forum stresses the importance of analyzing the interconnectedness of these social developments. Jacob Carlos Lima, President of the Brazilian Sociological Society (SBS) gives us a brief insight into the Society’s history and calls upon the support and solidarity of the sociological community in the face of the recent political developments in the country and the related social struggles. Hermílio Santos, André Salata, and Emil Sobottka, from the Forum’s Local Organizing Committee, as well as six young Brazilian scholars give us some insights into Brazilian history and sociology.
Due to the systematic dismantling of European welfare states in recent years, new forms of social policies have been set in place, challenging not only different countries in specific areas but the social pillar of Europe and the European Union. In our first symposium of this issue scholars present their research on current trajectories and the challenges faced by some European countries.
The second symposium takes up one of the big issues of our times: the digitization of society, looking at its impact on labor, financial markets as well as sustainability. The symposium also addresses how research can contribute to maintaining or creating workers’ rights and fair working conditions in the platform economy.
In her article, Donatella della Porta maps out the current challenges for social movement studies. In her view, ongoing protests around the world have brought new issues onto the agenda, but also demand new ways of analyzing them. She argues for bringing capitalism and class as analytical categories back into social movement studies.
With Samir Amin (1931-2018) and Immanuel Wallerstein (1930-2019), two leading social scientists and political thinkers have passed away. Amin’s strategic conception of delinking and critique of Eurocentrism influenced Marxists and social scientists around the globe. With his notion of world-system analysis Wallerstein enriched sociological theory in profound ways. As former President of the ISA, he established a flourishing exchange between old and new members that resonates to this day. Colleagues and friends of these two outstanding members of our community remember and honor their work and life.
The two articles featured in the Open Section deal with migration to the United States: Veronica Montes examines the so-called “migrant caravan” as a strategic choice for people wanting to migrate from Latin America to the north. Ayşegül Balta Ozgen introduces us to the challenges as well as the benefits refugee resettlement means for a midsize American city like Buffalo, NY.
In an interview opening this issue, Qingzhi Huan gives insights into Chinese debates on the ecological crisis and how environmental policies and approaches to environmental protection have changed over the past decades.
The Great Transformation, the magnum opus of Karl Polanyi, published in 1944, reconstructs the economic, social, and cultural history of capitalism in the face of the developments he had witnessed between the 1920s and the 1940s. In the first symposium, we celebrate 75 years of this great book.
Ann Barden Denis died in February 2019. She will be remembered not only for her sociological work in her fields of research, but also for her strong engagement in the ISA. Three close friends remember her life and work in their tribute.
Migration cannot be regarded as an isolated phenomenon; rather, it is based on an interplay between multiple factors. The articles gathered combine historical perspectives with an analysis of the causes of migration, the situation of migrants and refugees, the contested political regulation, and civil society’s engagement.
Fridays for Future has become a very remarkable social movement against climate change. One article maps the cross-class approach to mobilizing and coalition-building that is a new development within the environmental movement.
Moustapha Tamba organized a collection of articles from Senegalese sociologists. They focus on the sociology of education and give us deep insights into the organization and accessibility of education and the relevance of religion.
Over the last decade, Nandini Sundar challenged the boundary between academia and activism and confronted social injustice in India through political action. In the interview opening this issue, Sundar talks about the past and current situation of India’s “war in Bastar”.
Reflections on transformations and alternatives to the current organization of societies have always been a part of sociological thought. The contributions collected for the first symposium give theoretical as well as empirical insights into these issues.
Erik Olin Wright, a scholar whose life and work was dedicated to the ideas of equality, freedom, and community passed away in January 2019. With him we lose a sociologist whose work inspire colleagues as well as activists across the globe. Two close friends pay tribute to his life and work.
On a global scale, women still account for a large proportion of the poor and marginalized. Birgit Riegraf, Lina Abirafeh and Kadri Aavik invited scholars from around the world to present their research on the relation between gender and social inequality.
One section provides an insight into theoretical perspectives and empirical research from South Africa debating issues concerning not only this country but also Zimbabwe and Tanzania. A photo-essay about the history of Johannesburg gives a visual comprehension of that city built on gold.
This issue opens with a programmatic article by Sari Hanafi, the new ISA President (2018-2022). He discusses his vision for the ISA for the years to come and calls for a paradigm of pluralism to strengthen a global “Sociology in Dialogue.”
One symposium of this issue reflects the current interest in questions of class formation and class relations. In conjunction with sociological debates on class, the symposium explores the implications for the rise of poverty and inequality.
Economic growth constitutes the basis of prosperity in western societies but the ever-growing output of goods exacerbates the ecological destruction of the planet. Contributors from around the globe discuss the role of economic growth in society, its challenges as well as alternative visions.
In her theoretical contribution, Ariel Salleh reflects the debates surrounding ecofeminism and calls for a critical sociology and the notion of an embodied materialism.
The end of many of Latin America’s leftist governments coincides with the rise of right-wing governments in many other regions of the world. In one section, scholars from Brazil, Colombia, Turkey, and Poland examine the historical and political developments of right-wing populism.
In the interview opening this issue Nancy Fraser debates the question of building a more inclusive feminist movement and discusses her idea of a feminism for the 99%.
Democracy is under pressure in many parts of the world today. Eight sociologists highlight the challenges democracy faces in different countries, discuss how people struggle for more democratic rights, and critically analyse current political practices.
In May 2018, Aníbal Quijano, one of Latin America’s most eminent sociologists, passed away. His work influenced generations of sociologists everywhere. Two of his close colleagues and friends look back at his life and celebrate his legacy.
Poverty has always been a pressing issue for sociologists. In this issue sociologists discuss specific regional developments of poverty-reducing policies (or the lack thereof) and analyse different trajectories in particular spheres of basic human needs such as food security.
One section gives an introduction into the historical development of Polish sociology as well as insights into current sociological research in the country.
This issue opens with an interview with John Holloway. He discusses the destructive forces of money, the dynamics of finance capitalism, but also emphasizes that another society is possible.
The impact of Neoliberal Think Tanks on (global) political decision-making is on the raise. One symposium pursues the roots and developments of Neoliberal Think Tank Networks and examines their political, social and economic influences in different countries.
Care and care work have received increasing attention from sociologists. Heidi Gottfried and Jennifer Jihye Chun collected articles, which take us around the globe to reflect on the deep ongoing and far-reaching changes in the organization of care and care work.
The thesis on resonance by Hartmut Rosa, a German sociologist, has been broadly discussed in recent years. In this issue, he gives some insights into his concept of resonance.
The issue also includes an interview with Jasminka Lažnjak, president of the Croatian Sociological Association, about developments in Eastern Europe and the challenges for sociology.
This issue of Global Dialogue opens with an interview with one of the most prominent theoreticians on dependency theory and Marxist thinkers in Latin America, Virgínia Fontes.
In July 2018, more than 5,000 sociologists participated in the XIX ISA World Congress of Sociology in Toronto, Canada. ISA President Margaret Abraham, Patrizia Albanese, chair of the Local Organizing Committee, and Rima Wilkes, President of the Canadian Sociological Association, and 5 young Canadian scholars discuss their findings and the tasks of sociology in the face of the pressing issues of our time.
Violence and gender is often a taboo topic. Repeated efforts to bring it to public attention have been made and the extent of the problem causes outrage. Invited by Margaret Abraham authors from around the globe write about developments in these countries.
Karl Marx’s 200th birthday provides an opportunity to reflect upon how his theories and ideas are discussed in sociology. A number of scholars contribute to a symposium, which combines in-depth analysis of the history of sociology with insights into the international discussion of Marx’s theory and critiques of his oeuvre.