GD9.2, August 2019

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Editorial of Global Dialogue 9.2

Sociologists not only aim to foster discussions within the discipline but also are engaged in public debates and controversies. Over the last decade Nandini Sundar, a most renowned Indian sociologist and social activist challenged the boundary between academia and activism and confronted social injustice in India through political action. In the interview opening this issue […]

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Burning Forests: An Interview with Nandini Sundar

Nandini Sundar is Professor of Sociology at the Delhi School of Economics, Delhi University. Her recent publications include: The Burning Forest: India’s War in Bastar (Juggernaut Press, 2016, and new edition under the title The Burning Forest: India’s War Against the Maoists, Verso, 2019); an edited volume, The Scheduled Tribes and Their India (OUP, 2016); Civil Wars in South Asia: […]

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A Brief History of Sociological Alternatives

by Matt Dawson, University of Glasgow, United Kingdom “So, what’s the alternative?” I can’t be the only sociologist to be asked what alternatives sociology has to offer to the social problems it so carefully catalogues. It was partly this questioning, and my occasional inability to answer it, that encouraged me to write Social Theory for […]

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Future in the Making

by Rainer Rilling, University of Marburg, Germany The term “transformation” has a short yet diverse history. It ranges from everyday to political-scientific descriptions of all kinds of change, from political regime change and the development of post-colonial orders into liberal democratic capitalisms, to the different varieties of a globalizing capitalism and finally, even more broadly, […]

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The Many Voices of Buen Vivir

by Mateo Martínez Abarca, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico, and Centre for Social Studies, University of Coimbra, Portugal During recent years in Latin America – especially in the Andean region – an important debate has taken place concerning the idea of Buen Vivir. First as a proposal forged in the heat of indigenous struggles […]

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The Other Future of the Arab World

by Abdelkader Latreche, sociologist and demographer, Qatar/Algeria Forecasting, prospecting, or shaping the future of the Arab countries or of the Arab world is a challenging and difficult task. Challenging, because it deals with countries over-fascinated with the future, split between the splendors of the past and the miseries of the present. These are societies in […]

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How Stigma Constrains Policies: Waste Pickers in South Africa

by Teresa Perez, University of Cape Town, South Africa Last month I finished packing the last of my belongings to move back to the UK after seven years in Cape Town. Anything that I didn’t want was placed outside my home and gone within an hour. Waste pickers had collected, sorted, and sold my things. […]

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Adapting to Climate Change: Smallholders in Zimbabwe

by Christopher Mabeza, Zimbabwe Open University, Zimbabwe That global climate is changing is beyond reasonable doubt. The impacts of climate change are being felt disproportionately across the globe with people in the developing countries bearing the major brunt. Zimbabwe is no exception. There are climate change fingerprints all over Zimbabwe’s rural landscape. Increased rainfall variability […]

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Erik Olin Wright: A Real Utopian

by Michael Burawoy, University of California at Berkeley, USA Where did it begin? It’s difficult to say. Erik himself liked to trace his interest in utopias to 1971 when he was a student at the Unitarian-Universalist seminary in Berkeley, avoiding the draft. It was then that he organized a student-run seminar called “Utopia and Revolution” […]

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Remembering Erik Olin Wright

by Michelle Williams, University of Witswatersrand, South Africa I am one of the many people who was able to count Erik Olin Wright as a mentor, collaborator, friend, and fellow traveller. Many tributes have focused on his enormous intellectual contribution, his legendary supervision and mentoring, his engagement and commitment to finding pathways beyond capitalism, and […]

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Relating Gender and Inequality: An Introduction

by Birgit Riegraf, Paderborn University, Germany, and member of ISA Research Committee on Women, Gender and Society (RC32), Lina Abirafeh, Lebanese American University, Lebanon, and Kadri Aavik, Tallinn University, Estonia and University of Helsinki, Finland  Gender and social inequality are key spheres of study and analysis in sociology, gender studies, and countless other disciplines. An […]

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Gender Challenges in Research Funding

by Liisa Husu, Hanken School of Economics, Finland, and Örebro University, Sweden, and board member of ISA Research Committee on Sociology of Science and Technology (RC23), and member of ISA Research Committee on Women, Gender and Society (RC32) Gender inequality in academia and research careers is a persistent and global concern. Only a third of […]

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Challenging Gender Equality in the Czech Republic

by Blanka Nyklová, Institute of Sociology of the Czech Academy of Science, Czech Republic This year celebrates 30 years since the lifting of the Iron Curtain in Europe’s semi-periphery, or 30 years of uneven neoliberalization hailed as the only possible path to democracy. The ascent of democracy was seen as a move to meritocracy, erasing former […]

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Persistence and Change: Gender Inequality in the US

by Margaret Abraham, Hofstra University, USA, former President of the International Sociological Association (2014-18) and member of ISA Research Committees on Racism, Nationalism, Indigeneity and Ethnicity (RC05), Sociology of Migration (RC31), Women, Gender and Society (RC32), and Human Rights and Global Justice (TG03) A record number of women were elected during the 2018 November midterm […]

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Gender and Inequality in the Arab Region

by Lina Abirafeh, Lebanese American University, Lebanon While gender inequality is an unfortunate global reality, the Arab region faces not only the greatest gap, but also significant challenges in redressing this inequality. The region has long suffered economic and political insecurities, compounded by socio-cultural obstacles and a system of entrenched patriarchy. This toxic combination stalls […]

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Gendered Labor and Inequality in the Asian Context

by Nicola Piper, Queen Mary University of London, UK and member of ISA Research Committee on Poverty, Social Welfare and Social Policy (RC19) Asia is home to significant “South-South” or intra-regional migration. According to estimates by the International Labour Organization, there were 150.3 million migrant workers in 2013 of whom 83.7 million were men, and […]

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IPSP: Social Progress, Some Gendered Reflections

by Jeff Hearn, Hanken School of Economics, Finland, Örebro University, Sweden, and University of Huddersfield, UK, and member of ISA Research Committee on Women, Gender, and Society (RC32) The International Panel on Social Progress (IPSP, https://www.ipsp.org/) was conceived around 2012 and early 2013, as a large independent non-governmental social science operation, paralleling in some ways […]

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Poverty and Inequality: South Africa as a Warning to Africa

by Jeremy Seekings, University of Cape Town, South Africa, member of ISA Research Committee on Poverty, Social Welfare and Social Policy (RC19), and former Vice-President of ISA Research Committee on Urban and Regional Development (RC21) Poverty and inequality in South Africa have rightly attracted considerable attention. Absolute poverty rates in South Africa – calculated using […]

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Pentecostalism and Charismatic Christianity in South Africa

by Mokong S. Mapadimeng, Human Sciences Research Council, South Africa, member of ISA Research Committees on Sociology of Arts (RC37) and Labor Movements (RC44) The 1994 democratic elections in South Africa marked a watershed moment of change represented by the official collapse of the colonial apartheid order and its replacement by democratic black majority rule. […]

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Space Invaders: Underground Women Miners

by Asanda Benya, University of Cape Town, South Africa It has been fifteen years since women joined the underground workforce in South Africa’s mines. Currently there are close to 50,000 women in mining, about 10.9% of the permanent mining employees. While close to 11% of the mining workforce are women, and legislation facilitating and accelerating […]

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The Extra-Economic Effects of Unemployment

by Thabang Sefalafala, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa Discussions on the experiences of unemployment by scholars, analysts, policy makers, and the public often focus on the economic effects of unemployment, neglecting in the process extra-economic factors that are every bit as important. What is often intimated is how unemployment is primarily a problem of […]

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How to Feed the World: Learning from Tanzania

by Marc C.A. Wegerif, University of Pretoria, South Africa Moving to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, I was fascinated by the duka (small shop) selling food and household goods on almost every street. I was equally fascinated by the people’s markets – vibrant social spaces, full of many small traders who know each other and […]

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Zimbabwe’s Predatory State: Party, Military, and Business

by Jabusile Madyazvimbishi Shumba, Africa University, Zimbabwe In academic debates, Zimbabwe’s story is contested as much as it is polarized. The nature of the state itself is in doubt and disputed: does Zimbabwe exemplify a fragile, strong and uncooperative, or predatory state? On 15 November 2017, when the military intervened leading to the dethronement of […]

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Photo-essay: Jozi, the Precarious City of Gold

by Alexia Webster, photographer and Edward Webster, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, member and former President of the ISA Research Committee on Labor Movements (RC44) The complete version of this article including the photographs is available in the PDF version of Global Dialogue 9.2, pp.50-54. As Africa’s economic hub for over 125 years, Johannesburg […]

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Right-Wing Populism from a Solidarity Perspective

by Jörg Flecker, University of Vienna, Austria, and member of ISA Research Committee on Sociology of Work (RC30), Carina Altreiter, István Grajczjar, and Saskja Schindler, University of Vienna, Austria Far-right parties in Europe have benefitted from intensified socioeconomic change following the financial and economic crisis in 2008 as well as from declining trust in public […]

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