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Public Sociology

Public Sociology
Research, Action, and Change

  • Philip Nyden - Loyola University Chicago, USA
  • Leslie Hossfeld - Clemson University, SC, USA, Mississippi State University, USA, University of North Carolina Wilmington, USA
  • Gwendolyn Nyden - Oakton Community College

June 2011 | 336 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
This book highlights the variety of ways in which sociology brings about social change in community settings, assists nonprofit and social service organizations in their work, and influences policy at the local, regional, and national levels. It also spotlights sociology that informs the general public on key policy issues through media and creates research centers that develop and carry out collaborative research.

The book details a broad range of sociology projects. The 33 case studies are divided into 8 sections. Each section also includes sidebars of include non-sociologists writing about the impact of selected research projects. In some cases these are interdisciplinary projects since solutions to social problems are often multifaceted and do not fit into the disciplines as defined by universities.

Further, it emphasizes actions and connections. This is not armchair sociology where self-proclaimed public sociologists just write articles suggesting what government, corporations, communities, or others "ought to do." The authors are interested in the active connections to publics and users of the research, not the passive research process.

Foreword by Michael Burawoy
Foreword by Steven Redfield
Foreword by Dan E. Moore
Chapter 1. Public Scholarship, the Sociological Imagination, and Engaged Scholarship
Chapter 2. Crossing Boundaries in 21st-Century Research
Chapter 3. Starting Up and Sustaining Public Sociology Projects
Chapter 4. Career Guide for Public Sociologists
Case Studies 1. Equitable Community Development
1.1 Educating About Homelessness: A University-City Government Research Partnership

1.2 Differential Impact of Gentrification and Displacement on Communities of Color

1.3 Research in Action: Inner City Entrepreneurs

1.4 Art and Equitable Community Development

Case Studies 2: Environmental Issues
2.1 Public Sociology for Environmental Health and Environmental Justice

2.2 Learning From Disaster: Documenting the Impacts of Hurricane Katrina on Displaced College Students From New Orleans

2.3 Working for Global Environmental Justice: Channeling Privilege, Producing New Knowledge

Case Studies 3: Regional Research and Data Collection to Enhance Public Knowledge
3.1 Neighborhood, Region, and Place: The Chicago Experience

3.2 The Sacramento State Annual Survey of the Region

3.3 Reducing Hunger in Oregon

3.4 Poverty Information to Health Communities Address Critical Needs

3.5 Sociology in Public Service

Case Studies 4: Inequalities of Race, Class and Gender
4.1 Bringing a Feminist Sociology to Smart-Girl: Building a University-Nonprofit Partnership

4.2 Feminist Research in Action: An Intersectional Approach to Girlcentric Programming

4.3 Youth Participation in Community Research for Racial Justice

4.4 Building Resources to Create and Maintain Stable Diverse Communities

Case Studies 5: The Media
5.1 The Media, ACORN, and Presidential Politics

5.2 Pressuring Alcohol Companies to Reform Marketing Practices

5.3 The Reel Girls Project: Self, Image, Adolescence, and Filmmaking

5.4 The Internet as a Leveler Between Advantaged and Disadvantaged Communities

Case Studies 6: Health
6.1 Teen Pregnancy Prevention

6.2 Doing God's Work and Doing Good Work(s): Unique Challenges to Evaluation Research in Ministry Settings

6.3 Feast on the Southeast: Creating a Sustainable Local Food System in Southeastern North Carolina

6.4 Challenging Discrimination Against Women, Minorities, and the Sick in Health Insurance

6.5 Tobacco Use Prevention in Montana's Frontier Communities: Developing New Rural Strategies

Case Studies 7: Crime, Reducing Violence and Promoting Justice
7.1 Forty Years of Codifying and Mapping Homicides in Chicago: Impacts on Policing, Research, and Community Well-Being

7.2 Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice in Wisconsin: Analysis, Graphs, and Engagement

7.3 The Role of Relationship Building in Research Partnerships

7.4 Hate Crime Motivation: The Practical Consequences of an Offender Typology

Case Studies 8: Community Organizing
8.1 Cultivating Public Sociology From the Classroom: The Case of a Student-Organized Tenants Union

8.2 The Unity of Theory and Practice: The U.S. Social Forum and Movement Building for Social Transformation

8.3 When the Community Leads

8.4 The "Third Place" Project

Conclusion: The Case for the New, Engaged, 21st-Century Scholarship
About the Editors
About the Contributors

“The best part of this book at the prospectus reads is that it shows that sociologists are engaged outside the classroom and university walls. I think too often students see us lecture and in our offices, and think all we do is sit behind computers. Some of us do, but many of us like to be in the community trying to bring about change. It's a "get your hands dirty" approach that a lot of students miss with the typical textbook.”

Toby A. Ten Eyck
Michigan State University

previously left my review

Mrs Annie Ostapenko-Denton
Community Studies, Truro And Penwith College
June 9, 2016

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ISBN: 9781412982634

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