Sociology @ Goldsmiths

Leading edge Sociology


October 2016

Border Stories: Nick Thorpe and Olumide Popoola in conversation

Wednesday 16 November
1.00-3.00pm, RHB 300a (followed by afternoon tea)
All are welcome.







In this discussion Central Europe correspondent for the BBC, Nick Thorpe and writer and lecturer Olumide Popoola will talk about their respective work in Hungary (journalistic) and the Jungle Camp in Calais (fiction).

 “Look at all these borders, foaming at the mouth with bodies broken and desperate” (Warsan Shire, 2011:25)

Discussions of immigration and immigration control, securitisation and illegality have become more pressing in recent years. According to the United Nations Population Fund, in 2015, 244 million people, or 3.3 per cent of the world’s population, lived outside their country of origin, with increasing numbers of people being forcibly displaced as a result of conflict, violence and human rights violations (UNPF, 2016).

Harrowing scenes of what has become known as the Mediterranean ‘refugee’ or ‘migrant crisis’ play out in the media almost daily, as more people fleeing war, violence and poverty in Africa and the Middle East try to find safety in Europe. Sometimes, these lives have faded from our screens and pages as another spectacle has caught journalistic and public attention, but these dangerous journeys and the trauma and deaths — ‘bodies broken and desperate’ — that they entail continue. How to tell and do justice to the stories of these men, women and children?


Adsensory Financialisation

A new publication from Dr Pam Odih.

978-1-4438-9531-6-front-coverAdsensory technology presupposes a neoliberal entrepreneurial self as an integral feature of its biopolitical financialisation of healthcare regimes. According to Michel Foucault, neoliberalism is indebted to the endeavour of its self-disciplined subjects, investing human capital in a self-regulated, entrepreneurial pursuit of responsible healthcare and well-being. Primarily informed by social network analytics and virtual ethnographic observations, this book identifies the biopolitical basis of adsensory technologies.

Published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

UrbanPhotoFest 2016: Programme of Events

Festival dates: 3 – 8 November 2016 The organisers of the 2016 International UrbanPhotoFest (UPF) are delighted to announce an exciting schedule of events for this year’s festival run over six days. UrbanPhotoFest will appeal to photographers, artists, film-makers, and those interested in urban theory and research, and includes a two-day conference, a master-class with Mango Lab, Seminars with London […]

via UrbanPhotoFest 2016: Programme of Events — Streetsigns

CISP Salon: STS Then & Now — CISP Online

CISP Salon: STS Then & Now October 27 (Thursday), 2016 3:00pm-6:00pm, Warmington Tower 1204 Over the past 40 years, Science and Technology Studies (STS) has grown with contributions from many disciplines, sometimes leading to complicated genealogies concerning its many theoretical commitments. During the Autumn and Spring terms, we will meet to discuss two texts in…

via CISP Salon: STS Then & Now — CISP Online


This paper reflects on the challenges and pitfalls of doing collaborative ethnography in a research project (ARITHMUS) that studies the enactment of populations through statistics. Successful collaboration is essential in order to translate the idea of a transnational field of statistical practices – the conceptual starting point through which the researchers of the ARITHMUS team seek to overcome methodological nationalism – into a corresponding methodology and research practice that transcend nationally bounded case studies. Hence, the question arises as to how we make collaboration work in practice.

In the first part of this working paper we explain why we seek to transcend methodological nationalism and why the conceptual starting points of the enactment of a European population and a transnational field of statistical practices require what we call a transversal method.

In the paper’s second part we reflect on five interrelated pitfalls and challenges of collaboration in order to tease out possibilities for negotiating these to make collaboration work in practice.

Forgeries of Memory and Meaning: Thinking Racial Regimes and Film with Cedric J. Robinson

Wednesday 9 November 2016
RHB 309
Screening 3.30-5.30pm + Talk 6.00-7.30pm
Forgeries of Memory and Meaning: Thinking Racial Regimes and Film with Cedric J. Robinson
Screening and Roundtable organised by the Methods Lab with the Centre for Philosophy and Critical Theory + Race Critical Studies Network + Media and Communications Dept at Goldsmiths
Roderick Ferguson, Avery F. Gordon, and Alberto Toscano (Chair)
In his last published book, Forgeries of Meaning & Memory: Blacks and the Regimes of Race in American Theater and Film Before World War II (University of North Carolina Press, 2007), Cedric J. Robinson investigates the shifting racial regimes present in early American film as these emerge in response to the needs of capitalism and imperial expansion. Less well known than Black Marxism: The Making of the Black Radical Tradition, in this book Robinson presents the results of a twenty-year long study of American cinema and the role of culture in cementing and destabilizing racial regimes.
The screening and roundtable put Julie Dash’s 1991 film, Daughters of the Dust, in conversation with Robinson’s book. Dash’s film was hailed by the radical African American writer and filmmaker Toni Cade Bambara as an essential film in the “progressive world film culture movements that bolster socially responsible cinema” and it makes repeated appearances in Forgeries of Meaning & Memory. Daughters of the Dust tells the story of the Peazant family who, in a wave of migration to the northern parts of the U.S., are about to leave their Gullah Island home off the coast of South Carolina and Georgia in 1902. The film’s attention to the changes in black subjectivity wrought by emancipation and post Reconstruction Jim Crow modernity weave a story and a visual field of the emergence of the “New Negro” that interrogate white nationalist racial regimes and that also anticipate the shifting terrain of state violence as the rise of fascist movements shadow an epidemic of lynching.
After the screening of Daughters of the Dust, we will host a discussion of the film and Robinson’s book, Forgeries of Meaning & Myth. Active participation in the discussion by students, staff, and members of the public is welcomed.
Roderick Ferguson is Professor of African American and Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the author of The Reorder of Things: The University and its Pedagogies of Minority Difference, among other books and articles.
Avery F. Gordon is Professor of Sociology at the University of California Santa Barbara and Visiting Professor in the Birkbeck School of Law and the author of Ghostly Matters: Haunting and the Sociological Imagination and the forthcoming The Hawthorn Archive: Letters from the Utopian Margins, among other books and articles.
Alberto Toscano is the Co-Director of the Centre for Philosophy and Critical Theory at Goldsmiths and the author of Cartographies of the Absolute, among other books and articles.

An Urban Sociology of Water by Les Back

‘Second Class Bath’ The social life of water and washing provides a way to understand the history of cities. In Liverpool in the midst of a cholera epidemic in 1832, Kitty Wilk…

Source: An Urban Sociology of Water by Les Back

Book Launch: A Jar of Wild Flowers

24 November 2016
Libreria Bookshop, 65 Hanbury Street, London E1 5JP

f-1468433937-a-jar-of-wild-flowers-320x491Join us for an evening in celebration of John Berger, and the release of A Jar of Wild Flowers, a cross-cultural collection of essays and conversations with Berger from thirty of his friends, artistic collaborators, and followers, including Ali Smith, Julie Christie, Sally Potter, Ram Rahman, Hsiao-Hung Pai and many others.

For decades John Berger has brought together disparate subjects through his poetic humanism. His work – be it through stories, poetry, drawing or essays – challenges us all to take the brave step from limited sympathy to real, extended generosity, opening up radical questions about the meaning of belonging and of community. We will be hearing from Tessa McWatt, Nirmal Puwar and Tom Overton, who will reflect on Berger’s life and work. 

Tessa McWatt is a novelist, Reader in Creative Writing at the University of East London and contributor to A Jar of Wild Flowers.

Nirmal Puwar is Reader in Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London and contributor to A Jar of Wild Flowers

Tom Overton catalogued John Berger’s archive at the British Library, and edited Portraits: John Berger on Artists and Landscapes: John Berger on Art. He has also curated exhibitions at the Whitechapel Gallery and Somerset House, and is writing Berger’s biography.

Tickets: Free
To reserve a place email

Rethinking Life at the Margins — Streetsigns

Book launch at Goldsmiths, University of London Venue : Ben Pimlott Building’s lecture theatre Date : Friday the 14th of October 2016 Time : 4 – 5.30 PM Social sciences are inherently fascinated by difference. Often departing from relatively central positions, geographers, sociologists, psychologists, anthropologists, philosophers, and others are attracted by the margins as […]

via Rethinking Life at the Margins — Streetsigns

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