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The Possibilities for and of a Global Sociology

Wednesday 7 December 2011, 4.15PM to 5.30pm

Speaker(s): Assoc Prof Gurminder Bhambra, Department of Sociology, University of Warwick

The idea of ‘global sociology’ has recently been promoted as a way in which sociology can redress its previous neglect of those represented as ‘other’ in its construction of modernity. This paper addresses the way in which arguments about the global nature of the world in which we live are beginning to have an impact within sociology such that sociology has to engage, not just with the changing conceptual architecture, as Sassen calls it, of globalisation, but also with the recognition of the epistemological value and agency of the world beyond the west as Leela Gandhi has argued. This latter consideration, I argue, challenges more neutral understandings of the global with a call, specifically, for an acknowledgement of the significance of the 'colonial global' in the constitution of sociology. It is only by recognising the 'colonial global' historically that it is possible to understand and address the postcolonial present of a 'global sociology'.

Gurminder is Associate Professor of Sociology and Director of the Social Theory Centre at the University of Warwick. She has held Postdoctoral Research Fellowships at the University of Sussex funded by the ESRC and the School of Social Sciences and Cultural Studies, University of Sussex, which were followed by a first appointment at the University of Keele. She has been a Research Associate at the Five College Women’s Studies Research Centre at Mount Holyoke College, USA, where she was also Visiting Assistant Professor in Critical Social Thought.


Location: W/222