Three organizations I am a part of are now going through the process of “constitutional revisions.” These include the local water association, the Sociology Department, and the California Sociological Association. Actually the water association is not going through revisions, but last night one of the new members actually found a copy of “The Constitution,” and sent an email noting that we no longer follow the rules, mainly because we never get a quorum. For that matter, here in the State of California, there is a call for a Constitutional Convention, too. All of Europe is undergoing changes to their Constitution, as well.
Are Constitutions ever completed and then never (or rarely) changed? The word implies that they should be, but as far as I can tell, this rarely happens, except maybe in the US Constitution which we hire Constitutional Lawyers and Judges to gues at its meaning. We humans do though seem to have a fascination with tweaking the rules for doing whatever stuff our organization was designed to do, rather than the actual “stuff.”
Tony Waters is czar and editor of Ethnography.com. He came to us from the Sociology department at California State University at Chico where he has been a professor since 1996. In 2016 though he suddenly found himself with a new gig at Payap University in northern Thailand where he is on the faculty of the Peace Studies Department. He has also been a guest professor in Germany, and Tanzania. In the past, his main interests have been international development and refugees in Thailand, Tanzania, and California. This reflects a former career in the Peace Corps (Thailand), and refugee camps (Thailand and Tanzania). His books include: Crime and Immigrant Youth (1999), Bureaucratizing the Good Samaritan (2001), The Persistence of Subsistence Agriculture: Life Beneath of the Marketplace (2007), When Killing is a Crime (2007), and Schooling, Bureaucracy, and Childhood: Bureaucratizing the Child (2012). His hobby is trying to learn strange languages–and the mistakes that that implies. Tony is a prolific academic, you can read more of his work at academia.edu.or purchase one (or more!) of his books from Amazon.com.