Wednesday 30 March 18:00 - 19:15

Sir Ambrose Fleming Lecture Theatre
Malet Street
London
WC1E 7JE

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Contemporary Sociology and the Reconstruction of its Canons

Government & Politics

UCL Sociological Network Inaugural Annual Lecture 2022

6pm – 7.15pm, Wednesday, 30 March 2022

G06 Sir Ambrose Fleming Lecture Theatre, Roberts Building, UCL, Malet Street, London, WC1E 7JE

Contemporary Sociology and the Reconstruction of its Canons

Professor Gurminder K Bhambra, FBA, Professor of Postcolonial and Decolonial Studies, Department of International Relations, School of Global Studies, University of Sussex and President, British Sociological Association

The idea of a set of figures that establish a core conceptual framework, or set of themes, organising the discipline of sociology is, as Raewyn Connell argues, a relatively recent phenomenon. The initial presentation of a foundational generation, from 1890 to 1920, was set out by Talcott Parsons in the 1930s. It included Durkheim and Weber and their understandings of modern society. It did not, however, have place for Du Bois who was their contemporary. This foundational period also coincided with the height of European empires, including the β€˜scramble for Africa’, and culminated in a world war between imperial powers. Yet, colonialism and empire lie outside the dominant framings of modern society and are largely attributed to earlier historical periods and civilisations. While the social movements of the sixties brought Marx, and concerns with capitalist economic relations, into the core of sociology, they did not challenge the colonial absences. In this talk, I discuss the conceptual architecture of sociology that has been bequeathed to us via a focus on the foundational generation and argue for the need to reconstruct it through an address of the broader, shared histories that have produced our present.

Professor Gurminder K Bhambra, FBA, Professor of Postcolonial and Decolonial Studies, Department of International Relations, School of Global Studies, University of Sussex and President, British Sociological Association

Q&A Chair

Dr Katherine Twamley, Associate Professor of Sociology, Social Research Institute, Institute of Education, UCL

β€’ A drinks reception will follow the lecture in the Roberts Building Foyer

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