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Archive for May, 2010

The Tyranny of The Local

May 30, 2010 by and tagged , , , , , ,

A few days ago, I made a point I have made before: that local governance is not inherently more democratic than of other levels (national, regional or global). This point was discussed over at Corrente where some were unconvinced and Lambert noted that, in the context of inaccessible national politics, there is a greater chance [...]

Posted in Global Civil Society, Global Governance, Globalism, Globalization, Ideologies, Politics | 5 Comments »

Book Review – To Inherit The Earth

May 29, 2010 by and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wendy Wolford and Angus Lindsay Wright’s To Inherit The Earth: The Landless Movement and the Struggle for a New Brazil is the perfect introduction to the Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra (MST). The book is roughly divided into four main sections. The first goes through a general political history of Brazil along with its [...]

Posted in Biodiversity, Book Reviews, Corporatism, Corruption, Development, Economy, Environment, Global Governance, Globalization, Human Rights, Indigenous Populations, Labor, Mass Violence, Politics, Poverty, Public Policy, Social Justice, Social Movements, Social Stratification, Social Structure, Sustainability | No Comments »

Eurovision 2010

May 29, 2010 by and tagged

Well, my favorites didn’t win and there were too many crappy ballads. Anyways, here are my favorites: Romania Turkey Iceland And Denmark

Posted in Music | No Comments »

Music Break – Asia

May 28, 2010 by and tagged

It seems like Todd Krohn and I are from the same ancient generation: we both grew up with Asia (does that correlate with turning into a cranky sociologist??)… heck, I can remember them when they were Emerson, Lake and Palmer… and King Crimson… and Uriah Heep. Asia had catchy tunes, solid rock… and oh, these [...]

Posted in Music | No Comments »

The Visual Du Jour – No Vacation Nation

May 28, 2010 by and tagged ,

Via the Center for Economic and Policy Research: Full report below: No-Vacation Nation As the original article above notes, “But it’s not just vacation. CEPR research shows that the United States comes in last when when it comes to paid sick days and paid parental leave as well. And while some argue that paid leave [...]

Posted in Labor, Public Policy | No Comments »

Failing Global Food System: Failure of Entitlement, Land Grab and Neocolonialism

May 27, 2010 by and tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Let’s start with Amartya Sen’s insight on entitlements: “Economist Amartya Sen (1990:374) suggested that people command food through entitlements – that is, their socially defined rights to food resources. Entitlement might consist of the inheritance or purchase of land on which to grow food, employment to obtain wages with which to buy food, sociopolitical rights [...]

Posted in Biodiversity, Commodification, Consumerism, Corporatism, Economy, Environment, Globalization, Neo-Colonialism, Population, Poverty, Sustainability | No Comments »

The Economics of Immigration

May 27, 2010 by and tagged , ,

It is a topic I have touched upon before but it does not seem to matter how much information is made available publicly regarding the overall positive impact of immigration. Once the media has a set script (teachers unions = bad, for instance), it is really hard to change. Nevertheless, Robert Shapiro tackles the data [...]

Posted in Economy, Migration, Public Policy | No Comments »

Saving Africa’s Witch Children

May 26, 2010 by and tagged , , , , , , , ,

This British documentary, airing on HBO in the US, is a horrific account of the plight of children designated as witches in parts of Nigeria, thanks to the rise of fundamentalist pentecostal churches. The pastors in these churches get wealthy by promising parents that they will deliver their children from possession. In these rural communities, [...]

Posted in Activism, Collective Behavior, Environment, Human Rights, Mass Violence, Poverty, Religious Fundamentalism, Social Stigma, Structural Violence | No Comments »

Edgar Morin for A New “New” Left or a Fourth Way?

May 25, 2010 by and tagged , , , ,

In an article in Le Monde, Edgar Morin outlines why the Left is necessary in current times, why it has failed so far and the challenges it needs to tackle to begin solving the problems of what he calls the age of barbarity. Morin starts from the idea that there may be a unity of [...]

Posted in Global Imaginary, Globalism, Globalization, Ideologies | 9 Comments »

The Lazarus Effect

May 24, 2010 by and tagged , ,

If you missed this short documentary on HBO, you missed something important. This film is about more than just distributing ARVs to HIV-positive people in Zambia and the challenges of public health on the African continent. It also touches upon the devastation on the social structure when mortality is so high, the stigma attached to [...]

Posted in Health, Health Care, Poverty | No Comments »

Social Movements 101 – Red-Shirt Edition

May 22, 2010 by and tagged , ,

Daniel Little, over at Understanding Society, has a very interesting post that analyzes the Thai Red Shirt movement as social movement. Before getting into his post, you can refresh your memory with a short primer on social movements by your truly here. Also, Little has linked to an interview he conducted with Doug McAdam on [...]

Posted in Social Movements, Social Theory, Sociology | No Comments »

Sociology: Italian Demise and German De-Academization and Professionalization?

May 21, 2010 by

A while back, Italian sociologist and fellow socblogger Agnese Vardanega sent me the link to this article by Guido Martinotti on the sad state of Italian sociology (although she is obviously a powerful counter-example of that). The article questions whether the death of Italian sociology is a murder or a suicide. My Italian is not [...]

Posted in Sociology | No Comments »

IMF Riots in Europe?

May 20, 2010 by and tagged ,

Hey kids, remember the IMF riots that occurred in poor countries as a result of IMF-imposed neo-liberalization of their economies and the havoc it wreaked on their societies? Let’s have Greg Palast refresh our memories, as he wrote about Joseph Stiglitz getting the economic Nobel Prize: “Each nation’s economy is individually analyzed, then, says Stiglitz, [...]

Posted in Economy, Sociology | 2 Comments »

The Visual Du Jour – Capitalist Consanguinity

May 20, 2010 by and tagged , ,

Via Pierre Maura, click on the link to enjoy the animation, 1274372604_cac40_3.swf (application/x-shockwave-flash Object) via kwout This diagram reveals the extent of interlocking directorates between CAC40 firms, despite voluntary codes of conduct and pleas to good corporate governance (do these ever work?). The links between firms are quite extensive and dense.

Posted in Corporatism, Economy, Sociology | No Comments »

Moral Panics 2.0

May 19, 2010 by and tagged , ,

A binge drinking death at an “apéros Facebook”, that is, a drinking event organized via Facebook, where thousands of people congregate, and out of the woodworks come the moral entrepreneurs, sounding the alarm as to what is happening to our kids these days and what should be done about these apéros géants. There is nothing [...]

Posted in Anomie, Collective Behavior, Sociology | No Comments »

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