work in progress in social theory and cultural sociology

Posts Tagged ‘Emile Durkheim’

Consumerism as Folk Religion?

06.07.2014 · Posted in Uncategorized

[presentation at the workshop “Critiques of Capitalism: Christian and Muslim Voices“, Exeter 2nd and 3rd June 2014] When talking about consumerism in the context of religion and critiques of capitalism, the standard approach is to portray it as some sort of adoration of a golden calf. Both theologians and critical social scientists are quick to ...

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sociology and the bearded bourgeois white men

10.05.2013 · Posted in Uncategorized

It has become a common exercise in sociology introductory classes to show students a lineup of the classics (normally Karl Marx, Max Weber, Emile Durkheim) and ask them what these three have in common. Answer: they are all bearded middle-class white males. This is, of course, a valid reminder of one of sociology’s core messages: ...

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Ziya Gökalp, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the two Emile Durkheims

06.21.2013 · Posted in Uncategorized

All too often the political divides in Turkey are simplified into a crude division into a secularist/republican (Kemalist) camp and an Islamic/Islamist camp, with the only complication allowed for being the conflict around Kurdish minority rights. What has been long ignored was that both these camps share a set of outlooks that they inherited from ...

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the consumerist cult of the individual, social peace and its enemies

06.09.2013 · Posted in Uncategorized

With the decline in traditional religiosity and the deracination of the individual in a multicultural consumer society – shouldn’t we descend into an age of violence, particularly at a time of global crisis? Apparently not. According to this here the UK is now at its most peaceful ever, with crime rates, and especially homicide rates, ...

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Le nez rouge de Durkheim

02.15.2013 · Posted in Uncategorized

It’s Red Nose Day again soon  – which comes as a reminder of just how closely the quasi-religious culture of celebrity and consumer sainthood and the discourse of humanitarianism and human rights are interlinked (see Goodman 2009). In an earlier post I have suggested that we can see the discourse of human rights as quasi-theological ...

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Is the Cult of Health our New Religion?

05.24.2011 · Posted in Uncategorized

Here’s my answer Health may well have become “our new salvation” (Williams 1998: 440), which we try to achieve through consumerist rituals that are imbued with magical powers. In this respect the healthy body has indeed become a major new religious territory. But there are important differences to traditional religiosity. The new consumerist self-religiosity of ...

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Pokémon, Islam, Consumerism, Israel, and the Cult of the Individual (in no particular order)

07.20.2010 · Posted in Uncategorized

Whenever I come across any work on consumerism and religion – and particularly consumerism and Islam – I check whether it confirms or otherwise my own more theoretical piece on religion and consumerism. I am currently putting together a research proposal under the working title “Shopping for Turkish/Muslim Spiritualities, Identities and Ethics in the UK”, ...

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