Africanizing Anthropology tells the story of the anthropological fieldwork centered at the Rhodes-Livingstone Institute in Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) during the mid-twentieth century. Focusing on collaborative processes rather than on the activity of individual researchers, Lyn Schumaker gives the assistants and informants of anthropologists a central role in the making of anthropological knowledge. Schumaker shows how local conditions and local ideas about culture and history, as well as previous experience of outsiders’ interest, shape local people’s responses to anthropological fieldwork and help them, in turn, to influence the construction of knowledge about their societies and lives. Bringing to the fore a wide range of actors—missionaries, administrators, settlers, the families of anthropologists—Schumaker emphasizes the daily practices of researchers, demonstrating how these are as centrally implicated in the making of anthropological knowlege as the discipline’s methods. Selecting a prominent group of anthropologists—The Manchester School—she reveals how they achieved the advances in theory and method that made them famous in the 1950s and 1960s. This book makes important contributions to anthropology, African history, and the history of science.
Chinese merchants have traded with Southeast Asia for centuries, sojourning and sometimes settling, during their voyages. These ventures have taken place by land and by sea, over mountains and across deserts, linking China with vast stretches of Southeast Asia in a broad, mercantile embrace. Chinese Circulations provides an unprecedented overview of this trade, its scope, diversity, and complexity. This collection of twenty groundbreaking essays foregrounds the commodities that have linked China and Southeast Asia over the centuries, including fish, jade, metal, textiles, cotton, rice, opium, timber, books, and edible birds’ nests. Human labor, the Bible, and the coins used in regional trade are among the more unexpected commodities considered. In addition to focusing on a certain time period or geographic area, each of the essays explores a particular commodity or class of commodities, following its trajectory from production, through exchange and distribution, to consumption. The first four pieces put Chinese mercantile trade with Southeast Asia in broad historical perspective; the other essays appear in chronologically ordered sections covering the precolonial period to the present. Incorporating research conducted in Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, Thai, Burmese, Malay, Indonesian, and several Western languages, Chinese Circulations is a major contribution not only to Sino-Southeast Asian studies but also to the analysis of globalization past and present.
Contributors. Leonard Blussé, Wen-Chin Chang, Lucille Chia, Bien Chiang, Nola Cooke, Jean DeBernardi, C. Patterson Giersch, Takeshi Hamashita, Kwee Hui Kian, Li Tana, Lin Man-houng, Masuda Erika, Adam McKeown, Anthony Reid , Sun Laichen, Heather Sutherland, Eric Tagliacozzo, Carl A. Trocki, Wang Gungwu, Kevin Woods, Wu Xiao
The Cibola region on the Arizona–New Mexico border has fascinated archaeologists for more than a century. The region’s core is recognized as the ancestral homeland of the contemporary Zuni people, and the area also spans boundaries between the Ancestral Puebloan and Mogollon culture areas. The complexity of cross-cutting regional and cultural designations makes this an ideal context within which to explore the relationship between identity and social change at broad regional scales.
In Connected Communities, Matthew A. Peeples examines a period of dramatic social and political transformation in the ancient Cibola region (ca. A.D. 1150–1325). He analyzes archaeological data generated during a century of research through the lens of new and original social theories and methods focused on exploring identity, social networks, and social transformation. In so doing, he demonstrates the value of comparative, synthetic analysis.
The book addresses some of the oldest enduring questions in archaeology: How do large-scale social identities form? How do they change? How can we study such processes using material remains? Peeples approaches these questions using a new set of methods and models from the broader comparative social sciences (relational sociology and social networks) to track the trajectories of social groups in terms of both networks of interactions (relations) and expressions of similarity or difference (categories). He argues that archaeological research has too often conflated these different kinds of social identity and that this has hindered efforts to understand the drivers of social change.
In his strikingly original approach, Peeples combines massive amounts of new data and comparative explorations of contemporary social movements to provide new insights into how social identities formed and changed during this key period.
Since prehistoric times, the Baltic Sea has functioned as a northern *mare nostrum* — a crucial nexus that has shaped the languages, folklore, religions, literature, technology, and identities of the Germanic, Finnic, Sámi, Baltic, and Slavic peoples. This anthology explores the networks among those peoples. The contributions to *Contacts and Networks in the Baltic Sea Region:* Austmarr *as a Northern* mare nostrum, *ca. 500-1500 ad* address different aspects of cultural contacts around and across the Baltic from the perspectives of history, archaeology, linguistics, literary studies, religious studies, and folklore. The introduction offers a general overview of crosscultural contacts in the Baltic Sea region as a framework for contextualizing the volume’s twelve chapters, organized in four sections. The first section concerns geographical conceptions as revealed in Old Norse and in classical texts through place names, terms of direction, and geographical descriptions. The second section discusses the movement of cultural goods and persons in connection with elite mobility, the slave trade, and rune-carving practice. The third section turns to the history of language contacts and influences, using examples of Finnic names in runic inscriptions and Low German loanwords in Finnish. The final section analyzes intercultural connections related to mythology and religion spanning Baltic, Finnic, Germanic, and Sámi cultures. Together these diverse articles present a dynamic picture of this distinctive part of the world.
There has been unprecedented development in data communications and services since the first edition of this book was published in 1986. In less than a decade the technology has advanced beyond all recognition and the first edition is now really no more than an interesting historical record. The second edition, published in 1989, reflected some of these developments and introduced the then emerging proposals for an integrated services digital network (ISDN). Since that date ISDN has become a fact and has already begun to be superseded by proposals and standards for a broadband ISDN (B-ISDN), offering greatly enhanced and flexible data rates over a public network based mainly on optical fibre transmission. Optical fibre technology is also being used in wide-area private digital networks and for high-capacity internetworking operations.
As international travel became cheaper and national economies grew more connected over the past thirty years, millions of people from the Third World emigrated to richer countries. A tenth of the population of Mexico relocated to the United States between 1980 and 2000. Globalization theorists claimed that reception cities could do nothing about this trend, since nations make immigration policy, not cities. In Deflecting Immigration, sociologist Ivan Light shows how Los Angeles reduced the sustained, high-volume influx of poor Latinos who settled there by deflecting a portion of the migration to other cities in the United States. In this manner, Los Angeles tamed globalization's local impact, and helped to nationalize what had been a regional immigration issue. Los Angeles deflected immigration elsewhere in two ways. First, the protracted network-driven settlement of Mexicans naturally drove up rents in Mexican neighborhoods while reducing immigrants' wages, rendering Los Angeles a less attractive place to settle. Second, as migration outstripped the city's capacity to absorb newcomers, Los Angeles gradually became poverty-intolerant. By enforcing existing industrial, occupational, and housing ordinances, Los Angeles shut down some unwanted sweatshops and reduced slums. Their loss reduced the metropolitan region's accessibility to poor immigrants without reducing its attractiveness to wealthier immigrants. Additionally, ordinances mandating that homes be built on minimum-sized plots of land with attached garages made home ownership in L.A.'s suburbs unaffordable for poor immigrants and prevented low-cost rental housing from being built. Local rules concerning home occupancy and yard maintenance also prevented poor immigrants from crowding together to share housing costs. Unable to find affordable housing or low-wage jobs, approximately one million Latinos were deflected from Los Angeles between 1980 and 2000. The realities of a new global economy are still unfolding, with uncertain consequences for the future of advanced societies, but mass migration from the Third World is unlikely to stop in the next generation. Deflecting Immigration offers a shrewd analysis of how America's largest immigrant destination independently managed the challenges posed by millions of poor immigrants and, in the process, helped focus attention on immigration as an issue of national importance.
"Portes suggests that immigration constitutes an especially appropriate Mertonian 'strategic research site' for economic sociology in that it provides very good opportunities for investigating the embeddedness of economic relationships in social situations....the contributors expand the conventional domain of economic sociology quite literally in both time and space."—Contemporary Sociology "Alejandro Portes and his splendid band of collaborators make clear that the causes, processes, and consequences of migration vary dramatically from group to group, that a group's history makes a profound difference to its fate in the American economy. They have produced a sinewy book, a book worth arguing with."—Charles Tilly, Columbia University The Economic Sociology of Immigration forges a dynamic link between the theoretical innovations of economic sociology with the latest empirical findings from immigration research, an area of critical concern as the problems of ethnic poverty and inequality become increasingly profound. Alejandro Portes' lucid overview of sociological approaches to economic phenomena provides the framework for six thoughtful, wide-ranging investigations into ethnic and immigrant labor networks and social resources, entrepreneurship, and cultural assimilation. Mark Granovetter illustrates how small businesses built on the bonds of ethnicity and kinship can, under certain conditions, flourish remarkably well. Bryan R. Roberts demonstrates how immigrant groups' expectations of the duration of their stay influence their propensity toward entrepreneurship. Ivan Light and Carolyn Rosenstein chart how specific metropolitan environments have stimulated or impeded entrepreneurial ventures in five ethnic populations. Saskia Sassen provides a revealing analysis of the unexpectedly flexible and vital labor market networks maintained between immigrants and their native countries, while M. Patricia Fernandez Kelly looks specifically at the black inner city to examine how insular cultural values hinder the acquisition of skills and jobs outside the neighborhood. Alejandro Portes also depicts the difference between the attitudes of American-born youths and those of recent immigrants and its effect on the economic success of immigrant children.
In this innovative study, Leo Cabranes-Grant analyzes four intercultural events in the Viceroyalty of New Spain that took place between 1566 and 1690. Rather than relying on racial labels to describe alterations of identity, Cabranes-Grant focuses on experimentation, rehearsal, and the interaction between bodies and objects. His analysis shows how scenarios are invested with affective qualities, which in turn enable cultural and semiotic change. Central to his argument is Bruno Latour’s Actor-Network Theory, which figures society as a constantly evolving web of relationships among objects, people, and spaces. In examining these scenarios, Cabranes-Grant attempts to discern the reasons why the conditions of an intensified moment within this ceaseless flow take on a particular value and inspire their re-creation. Cabranes-Grant offers a fresh perspective on Latour’s theory and reorients debates concerning history and historiography in the field of performance studies.
The ICT industry is a major consumer of global energy. The energy crisis, global warming problems, dramatic growth in data traffic and the increased complexity of emerging networks are pushing academic and industry research towards the development of energy-saving and energy-efficient architectures, technologies and networks in order to reduce the carbon footprint while ensuring efficient and reliable communication networks, and environmental sustainability. Attractive solutions for the design and implementation of energy efficient wireless networks and 5G technologies include massive MIMO, non-orthogonal multiple access, and energy harvesting communications. Tools from areas such as machine and deep learning are being investigated to establish optimal approaches and understand fundamental limits. Moreover, new promising heterogeneous and decentralized network architectures and the Internet-of-Things (IoT) will have an impact on the successful implementation of future and next generation green wireless communications.
How Information Matters examines the ways a network of state and local governments and nonprofit organizations can enhance the capacity for successful policy change by public administrators. Hale examines drug courts, programs that typify the highly networked, collaborative environment of public administrators today. These “special dockets” implement justice but also drug treatment, case management, drug testing, and incentive programs for non-violent offenders in lieu of jail time. In a study that spans more than two decades, Hale shows ways organizations within the network act to champion, challenge, and support policy innovations over time. Her description of interactions between courts, administrative agencies, and national organizations highlight the evolution of collaborative governance in the state and local arena, with vignettes that share specific experiences across six states (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Missouri, and Tennessee) and ways that they acquired knowledge from the network to make decisions.
How Information Matters offers valuable insight into successful ways for collaboration and capacity building. It will be of special interest to public administrators or policymakers who wish to identify ways to improve their own programs’ performance.
The occupation of the northern half of the Chinese territories in the 1120s brought about a transformation in political communication in the south that had lasting implications for imperial Chinese history. By the late eleventh century, the Song court no longer dominated the production of information about itself and its territories. Song literati gradually consolidated their position as producers, users, and discussants of court gazettes, official records, archival compilations, dynastic histories, military geographies, and maps. This development altered the relationship between court and literati in political communication for the remainder of the imperial period. Based on a close reading of reader responses to official records and derivatives and on a mapping of literati networks, the author further proposes that the twelfth-century geopolitical crisis resulted in a lasting literati preference for imperial restoration and unified rule.
Hilde De Weerdt makes an important intervention in cultural and intellectual history by examining censorship and publicity together. In addition, she reorients the debate about the social transformation and local turn of imperial Chinese elites by treating the formation of localist strategies and empire-focused political identities as parallel rather than opposite trends.
In Mimesis Across Empires, Natasha Eaton examines the interactions, attachments, and crossings between the visual cultures of the Mughal and British Empires during the formative period of British imperial rule in India. Eaton explores how the aesthetics of Mughal "vernacular" art and British "realist" art mutually informed one another to create a hybrid visual economy. By tracing the exchange of objects and ideas—between Mughal artists and British collectors, British artists and Indian subjects, and Indian elites and British artists—she shows how Mughal artists influenced British conceptions of their art, their empire, and themselves, even as European art gave Indian painters a new visual vocabulary with which to critique colonial politics and aesthetics. By placing her analysis of visual culture in relation to other cultural encounters—ethnographic, legislative, diplomatic—Eaton uncovers deeper intimacies and hostilities between the colonizer and the colonized, linking artistic mimesis to the larger colonial project in India.
Networks and Markets
James E. Rauch Russell Sage Foundation, 2001 Library of Congress HM548.N48 2001 | Dewey Decimal 306.3
Networks and Markets argues that economists' knowledge of markets and sociologists' rich understanding of networks can and should be combined. Together they can help us achieve a more coherent view of economic life, where transactions follow both the logic of economic incentives and the established channels of personal relationships. Market exchange is impersonal, episodic, and carried out at arm's length. All that matters is how much the seller is asking, and how much the buyer is offering. An economic network, by contrast, is based upon more personalized and enduring relationships between people tied together by more than just price. Networks and Markets focuses on how the two concepts relate to each other: Are social networks an essential precondition for successful markets, or do networks arise naturally out of markets, as faceless traders build reputations and gain confidence in each other? The book includes contributions by both sociologists and economists, applying the concepts of markets and networks to concrete empirical phenomena. Among the topics analyzed, the book explains how, in Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan, firms combine into tightly-knit business blocs, how wholesalers in a Marseille fish market earn the loyalty of customers, and how ethnic retailers in the U.S. share valuable market information with other shopkeepers from their ethnic group. A response to each chapter discusses the issue from the standpoint of the other discipline. Sociologists are challenged to go beyond small-scale economic exchange and to integrate their concept of networks into a broader understanding of the economic system as a whole, while economists are challenged to consider the economic implications of network ties, which can be strong or weak, unconditional or highly contingent. This book proves that both economics and sociology provide stronger insights when they study markets and networks as parallel forms of exchange. But it also clarifies the healthy division of labor that remains between the two disciplines. Sociologists are adept at showing how markets are framed by social institutions; economists specialize in explaining how markets perform, taking the social context as a given. Networks and Markets showcases what each discipline does best and reveals where each discipline would do better by borrowing from the other.
Networks, Labour and Migration Among Indian Muslim Artisans provides an ethnography of life, work, and migration in a North Indian Muslim-dominated woodworking industry. It traces artisanal connections within the local context, during migration within India, and to the Gulf, examining how woodworkers utilize local and transnational networks, based on identity, religiosity, and affective circulations, to access resources, support, and forms of mutuality. However, the book also illustrates how liberalization, intensifying forms of marginalization and incorporation into global production networks have led to spatial pressures, fragmentation of artisanal labor, and forms of enslavement that persist despite geographical mobility and connectedness. By working across the dialectic of marginality and connectedness, Thomas Chambers thinks through these complexities and dualities by providing an ethnographic account that shares everyday life with artisans and others in the industry.
Do narratives make nations, and if so, did networks make this happen? The notion that national and other group identities are constructed and sustained by narratives and images has been widely postulated for several decades now. This volume contributes to this debate, with a particular emphasis on the networked, transnational nature of cultural nation-building processes in a comparative European and sometimes extra-European context. It gathers together essays that engage with objects of study ranging from poetry, prose, and political ideas to painting, porcelain, and popular song, and which draw on examples in Icelandic, Arabic, German, Irish, Hungarian, and French, among other languages. The contributors study transcultural phenomena from the medieval and early modern periods through to the modern and postmodern era, frequently challenging conventional periodizations and analytical frameworks based on the idea of the nation-state.
Media accounts of Congress emphasize conflict and the failure of Congress to enact legislation. Rarely do we see accounts of the successful efforts of members of Congress and outside advocacy groups to pass legislation dealing with important and controversial issues.
In Networks of Champions Christine A. DeGregorio identifies who in the U.S. House of Representatives took the lead in shepherding six major bills, dealing with welfare reform, drug control, international trade, farm policy, nuclear weapons testing, and assistance to the Contras, through Congress and how these champions of legislation worked with outside advocacy groups. DeGregorio finds that the champions of this legislation were drawn from a diverse group that included individuals both within and outside the formal hierarchy of leadership. The champions, who were not necessarily the prominent holders of important positions, are characterized by having knowledge of the subject matter, experience in the House, a facility for bargaining and compromise, the right committee assignments, and a commitment to hard work.
DeGregorio traces how these groups become influential and how the groups affect the policy-making process. She finds a reciprocal process in which advocacy groups use champions to express their views while champions use the resources of advocacy groups to gain influence in the House.
Based on extensive interviews with key congressional staff members and the leaders of advocacy groups, DeGregorio provides critical new insights into the legislative process. This book will be of interest to those who study the legislative process and the role of interest groups in making American policy.
". . . a substantial contribution to our understanding of advocacy in Congress." --Barbara Sinclair, University of California, Los Angeles
Christine A. DeGregorio is Associate Professor, Department of Government, School of Public Affairs, American University.
Networks of Modernism offers a new understanding of American modernist aesthetics and introduces the idea that networks were central to how American moderns thought about their culture in their dramatically changing milieu. While conventional wisdom holds that the network rose to prominence in the 1980s and 1990s in the context of information technologies, digitization is only the most recent manifestation of networks in intellectual history. Crucial developments in modern America provide another archive of network discourses well before the advent of the digital age. The rise of the railroad recast the American landscape as an assortment of interconnected hubs. The advent of broadcast radio created a decentralized audience that was at once the medium’s strength and its weakness. The steady and intertwined advances of urbanization and immigration demanded the reconceptualization of community and ethnic identity to replace the failing “melting pot” metaphor for the nation. Indeed, the signal developments of the modern era eroded social stratification and reorganized American society in a nodal, decentralized, and interpenetrating form—what today we would label a “distributed” network that is fully flattened and holds no clustered centers of power.
In this ferment of social upheaval and technological change, the moderns found what we would today term “the network,” though they did not have the vocabulary for it that we do now, to be a versatile model for their aesthetic experiments in representing social space and social relations. Whether they used the figuration of the network as a kind of formal experiment to negotiate the tensions between dispersal and unity, fragment and totality, or took the network as a subject in itself, as seen when dealing with crowds or public spaces, the network was a way for writers and artists to conceptualize and explore their rapidly changing society. Through readings of the works of Randolph Bourne, Jean Toomer, Anita Loos, John Dos Passos, and Nathanael West, Networks of Modernism positions the network as the defining figure of American modernist aesthetics and explores its use as a conceptual tool used to think through the rapid changes in American society.
Little is known about how Late Postclassic populations in southeast Mesoamerica organized their political relations. Networks of Power fills gaps in the knowledge of this little-studied area, reconstructing the course of political history in the Naco Valley from the fourteenth through early sixteenth centuries.
Describing the material and behavioral patterns pertaining to the Late Postclassic period using components of three settlements in the Naco Valley of northwestern Honduras, the book focuses on how contests for power shaped political structures. Power-seeking individuals, including but not restricted to ruling elites, depended on networks of allies to support their political objectives. Ongoing and partially successful competitions waged within networks led to the incorporation of exotic ideas and imported items into the daily practices of all Naco Valley occupants. The result was a fragile hierarchical structure forever vulnerable to the initiatives of agents operating on local and distant stages.
Networks of Power describes who was involved in these competitions and in which networks they participated; what resources were mustered within these webs; which projects were fueled by these assets; and how, and to what extent, they contributed to the achievement of political aims.
Harvard University Press is proud to announce the second edition of a widely admired introductory textbook. When first published, Neurons and Networks filled the need for an introductory neuroscience text that is lucid, accessible, authoritative, logically organized, and concise. Avoiding the encyclopedic coverage that makes most neuroscience texts overwhelming, Neurons and Networks focused instead on building the solid foundation of understanding and knowledge required for further study.
The new edition retains the features that made the first edition so attractive: consistent emphasis on results and concepts that have stood the test of time; abundant high-quality illustrations; exceptionally clear explanations of technical terms. Completely revised and enlarged with six new chapters, the second edition of Neurons and Networks is an introduction not just to neurobiology, but to all of behavioral neuroscience. It is an ideal text for first- or second-year college students with minimal college science exposure. It is also an invaluable resource for students in biology, psychology, anthropology, and computer science who seek an accessible guide to a discipline that will be a critically important area of research in the twenty-first century.
In the twenty-first century, the production and use of scientific knowledge is more regulated, commercialized, and participatory than at any other time. The stakes in understanding those changes are high for scientist and nonscientist alike: they challenge traditional ideas of intellectual work and property and have the potential to remake legal and professional boundaries and transform the practice of research. A critical examination of the structures of power and inequality these changes hinge upon, this book explores the implications for human health, democratic society, and the environment.
In recent years U.S. public policy has focused on strengthening the nuclear family as a primary strategy for improving the lives of America's youth. It is often assumed that this normative type of family is an independent, self-sufficient unit adequate for raising children. But half of all households in the United States with young children have two employed parents. How do working parents provide care and mobilize the help that they need?
In Not-So-Nuclear Families: Class, Gender, and Networks of Care, Karen V. Hansen investigates the lives of working parents and the informal networks they construct to help care for their children. She chronicles the conflicts, hardships, and triumphs of four families of various social classes. Each must navigate the ideology that mandates that parents, mothers in particular, rear their own children, in the face of an economic reality that requires that parents rely on the help of others. In vivid family stories, parents detail how they and their networks of friends, paid caregivers, and extended kin collectively close the "care gap" for their school-aged children.
Hansen not only debunks the myth that families in the United States are independent, isolated, and self-reliant units, she breaks new theoretical ground by asserting that informal networks of care can potentially provide unique and valuable bonds that nuclear families cannot.
Performance Constellations maps transnational protest movements and the dynamics of networked expressive behavior in the streets and online, as people struggle to be heard and effect long-term social justice. Its case studies explore collective political action in Latin America, including the Zapatistas in the mid-’90s, protests during the 2001 Argentine economic crisis, the 2011 Chilean student movement, the 2014–2015 mobilizations for the disappeared Ayotzinapa students, and the 2018 transnational reproductive rights movement. The book analyzes uses of space, time, media communication, and corporeality in protests such as virtual sit-ins, flash mobs, scarfazos, and hashtag campaigns, arguing that these protests not only challenge hegemonic power but are also socially transformative. While other studies have focused either on digital activism or on street protests, Performance Constellations shows that they are in fact integrally entwined. Zooming in on protest movements and art-activism in Mexico, Argentina, and Chile, and putting contemporary insurgent actions in dialogue with their historical precedents, the book demonstrates how, even in moments of extreme duress, social actors in Latin America have taken up public and virtual space to intervene politically and to contest dominant powers.
From the earliest campaign against Augusto Pinochet’s repressive practices to the recent massive demonstrations against the World Trade Organization, transnational collective action involving nongovernmental organizations has been restructuring politics and changing the world. Ranging from Santiago to Seattle and covering more than twenty-five years of transnational advocacy, the essays in Restructuring World Politics offer a clear, richly nuanced picture of this process and its far-reaching implications in an increasingly globalized political economy. The book brings together scholars, activists, and policy makers to show how such advocacy addresses—and reshapes—key issues in the areas of labor, human rights, gender justice, democratization, and sustainable development throughout the world.
A primary goal of transnational advocacy is to create, strengthen, implement, and monitor international norms. How transnational networks go about doing this, why and when they succeed, and what problems and complications they face are the main themes of this book. Looking at a wide range of cases where nongovernmental actors attempt to change norms and the practices of states, international organizations, and firms in the private sector—from debt restructuring to protecting human rights, from anti-dam projects in India to the prodemocracy movement in Indonesia—the authors compellingly depict international nongovernmental organizations and transnational social movements as considerable, emerging powers in international politics, initiating, facilitating, and directing the transformation of global norms and practices.
Contributors: Karen Brown Thompson, U of Minnesota; Charles T. Call, Brown U; Elizabeth A. Donnelly, Harvard U; Darren Hawkins, Brigham Young U; Thalia G. Kidder; Smitu Kothari; Paul J. Nelson, U of Pittsburgh; August Nimtz, U of Minnesota; Mark Ritchie, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy; Jackie Smith, SUNY Stony Brook; Daniel C. Thomas, U of Illinois, Chicago.
China’s distinctive social media platforms have gained notable popularity among the nation’s vast number of internet users, but has China’s countryside been ‘left behind’ in this communication revolution? Tom McDonald spent 15 months living in a small rural Chinese community researching how the residents use social media in their daily lives. His ethnographic findings suggest that, far from being left behind, many rural Chinese people have already integrated social media into their everyday experience. Throughout his ground-breaking study, McDonald argues that social media allows rural people to extend and transform their social relationships by deepening already existing connections with friends known through their school, work or village, while also experimenting with completely new forms of relationships through online interactions with strangers, particularly when looking for love and romance. By juxtaposing these seemingly opposed relations, rural social media users are able to use these technologies to understand, capitalise on and challenge the notions of morality that underlie rural life.
Offers an innovative model for understanding how social movements occur in repressive societies.
After a series of failed attempts at mobilizing society, Poland's opposition sprang to surprising-and newly effective-life with the formation of the Solidarity trade union in 1980. If not for those past failures, this book suggests, Solidarity might never have succeeded. Solidarity and Contention deftly reconstructs the networks of protest in Communist Poland to show how waves of dissent during the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s left an organizational residue that both instructed and enabled Solidarity and, ultimately, the Polish revolution.
Using newly available documentary sources, Maryjane Osa establishes links between activists during three waves of protest: 1954 to 1959, 1966 to 1970, and 1976 to 1980. She shows how political challengers, applying lessons drawn from past failures, developed an ideological formula to de-emphasize divisive issues and promote symbolic concerns, thus facilitating coalition building. Solidarity was therefore able to take advantage of a large opposition network already well in place before the founding of the union. An important case study in itself, the book also answers one of the most intriguing questions in social movement research: how can movements emerge in authoritarian states-where media are state controlled, the rights of assembly and speech are restricted, and the risks of collective action are high?
Maryjane Osa is visiting assistant professor of sociology at Northwestern University
In this thought-provoking work, Tony D. Sampson presents a contagion theory fit for the age of networks. Unlike memes and microbial contagions, Virality does not restrict itself to biological analogies and medical metaphors. It instead points toward a theory of contagious assemblages, events, and affects. For Sampson, contagion is not necessarily a positive or negative force of encounter; it is how society comes together and relates.
Sampson argues that a biological knowledge of contagion has been universally distributed by way of the rhetoric of fear used in the antivirus industry and other popular discourses surrounding network culture. This awareness is also detectable in concerns over too much connectivity, such as problems of global financial crisis and terrorism. Sampson’s “virality” is as established as that of the biological meme and microbe but is not understood through representational thinking expressed in metaphors and analogies. Rather, Sampson interprets contagion theory through the social relationalities first established in Gabriel Tarde’s microsociology and subsequently recognized in Gilles Deleuze’s ontological worldview.
According to Sampson, the reliance on representational thinking to explain the social behavior of networking—including that engaged in by nonhumans such as computers—allows language to overcategorize and limit analysis by imposing identities, oppositions, and resemblances on contagious phenomena. It is the power of these categories that impinges on social and cultural domains. Assemblage theory, on the other hand, is all about relationality and encounter, helping us to understand the viral as a positively sociological event, building from the molecular outward, long before it becomes biological.
Conventional wisdom holds that trust is essential for cooperation between individuals and institutions—such as community organizations, banks, and local governments. Not necessarily so, according to editors Karen Cook, Margaret Levi, and Russell Hardin. Cooperation thrives under a variety of circum-stances. Whom Can We Trust? examines the conditions that promote or constrain trust and advances our understanding of how cooperation really works. From interpersonal and intergroup relations to large-scale organizations, Whom Can We Trust? uses empirical research to show that the need for trust and trustworthiness as prerequisites to cooperation varies widely. Part I addresses the sources of group-based trust. One chapter focuses on the assumption—versus the reality—of trust among coethnics in Uganda. Another examines the effects of social-network position on trust and trustworthiness in urban Ghana and rural Kenya. And a third demonstrates how cooperation evolves in groups where reciprocity is the social norm. Part II asks whether there is a causal relationship between institutions and feelings of trust in individuals. What does—and doesn't—promote trust between doctors and patients in a managed-care setting? How do poverty and mistrust figure into the relations between inner city residents and their local leaders? Part III reveals how institutions and networks create environments for trust and cooperation. Chapters in this section look at trust as credit-worthiness and the history of borrowing and lending in the Anglo-American commercial world; the influence of the perceived legitimacy of local courts in the Philippines on the trust relations between citizens and the government; and the key role of skepticism, not necessarily trust, in a well-developed democratic society. Whom Can We Trust? unravels the intertwined functions of trust and cooperation in diverse cultural, economic, and social settings. The book provides a bold new way of thinking about how trust develops, the real limitations of trust, and when trust may not even be necessary for forging cooperation. A Volume in the Russell Sage Foundation Series on Trust
Although scholars have emphasized the importance of women’s networks for civil society in twentieth-century Japan, Women and Networks in Nineteenth-Century Japan is the first book to tackle the subject for the contentious and consequential nineteenth century. The essays traverse the divide when Japan started transforming itself from a decentralized to a centralized government, from legally imposed restrictions on movement to the breakdown of travel barriers, and from ad hoc schooling to compulsory elementary school education. As these essays suggest, such changes had a profound impact on women and their roles in networks. Rather than pursue a common methodology, the authors take diverse approaches to this topic that open up fruitful avenues for further exploration.
Most of the essays in this volume are by Japanese scholars; their inclusion here provides either an introduction to their work or the opportunity to explore their scholarship further. Because women are often invisible in historical documentation, the authors use a range of sources (such as diaries, letters, and legal documents) to reconstruct the familial, neighborhood, religious, political, work, and travel networks that women maintained, constructed, or found themselves in, sometimes against their will. In so doing, most but not all of the authors try to decenter historical narratives built on men’s activities and men’s occupational and status-based networks, and instead recover women’s activities in more localized groupings and personal associations.