Open Source Academic Publication and Those Frustrating Paywalls!

Rex over at Savage Minds has another editorial about the need for Open Access in academic publishing. This is a movement across academic landscape, in which publishers are asking how they can produce well-edited articles which maintain a legitimacy within academia. As Kerim points out, the standard responses of the conservative old-time academic journals is, … Continue reading Open Source Academic Publication and Those Frustrating Paywalls!

Max Weber on the Politics of Wives

One of the weaknesses of Classical Social Theory is that it deals poorly with the nature of gender and the family (for exceptions see Mary Wollstonecraft and Harriett Martineau). In two places in his essay “Politics as Vocation,” though Max Weber brings up the subject of wives. The first reference is near the beginning of … Continue reading Max Weber on the Politics of Wives

RIP Sociology, or the Most Successful Discipline of the Twentieth Century?

Last December, Julie lamented the decline of Sociology as a discipline in an essay provocatively titled “RIP Sociology.” As Julie noted in her post, it seems that the discipline no longer had the vim and verve she remembers from her undergraduate and graduate days of only 10 or 20 years ago. She laments with Les … Continue reading RIP Sociology, or the Most Successful Discipline of the Twentieth Century?

Academic Meetings, Graduation Season, and a Bit from Rousseau

Meetings are rituals, and rituals need symbols, and decorations. I’ve been to a lot of meetings in my time as an academic where I sat bored and confused, but still fulfilled my function as a decoration, and clap on cue. And to a large extent, that is what such ritual is about: clapping on cue … Continue reading Academic Meetings, Graduation Season, and a Bit from Rousseau

“Politics as Vocation” is One of Bill Clinton’s Very Favorite Books—But Our New Translation Doesn’t Have a Book Blurb!

Earlier this year, my wife and I published a book Weber’s Rationalism, which included four new translations of Weber’s essays, including “Politics as Vocation.” President Bill Clinton lists on his web-site “Politics as Vocation” as being one 21 of his favorite all-time books, right up there with Yeats Poems, The Imitation of Christ, and his … Continue reading “Politics as Vocation” is One of Bill Clinton’s Very Favorite Books—But Our New Translation Doesn’t Have a Book Blurb!

My Mass Grave Rediscovered!

In 1994-1995 I helped finance and dig a mass grave on the Rwanda-Tanzania border.   This happened because the refugee assistance agency I worked (TCRS) removed bodies from the Kagera River from June 1994-June 1995. Tanzanians were hired to first clean up the bodies that were there from earlier months when the genocide was occurring, and … Continue reading My Mass Grave Rediscovered!

The Tattooed Professor Takes on the Big U and Wins

Kevin, The Tattooed Professor from the Harvard University of East Des Moines posted a quick rebuttal to Professor Mark Bauerlein’s New York Times op-ed complaining about the skills of students. Bauerlein teaches at elite Emory University in Atlanta, and Kevin's rebuttal is worth reading. Bauerlein’s article, which is written without much broader context beyond the hallowed … Continue reading The Tattooed Professor Takes on the Big U and Wins

The Three Gifts of Tenure

I will say it up front. Tenure is cool, and the opposite, “contingent” employment, really sucks. I was an adjunct for about two years in the 1990s, and I know from first hand experience that it sucked. Why? Well there were a couple of reasons. First, was that I was constantly on the job market, … Continue reading The Three Gifts of Tenure

Big data, Small Data, and Everything In-between

The New York Times this morning had a nice story “How Not to Drown in Numbers” about big and small data written by social scientists who’ve worked for Google and Facebook, respectively. The article is good news for both qualitative and quantitative social scientists, and all of us in-between. Numbers are indeed important, but they … Continue reading Big data, Small Data, and Everything In-between