In a fascinating paper from 2008, Michael Burawoy wrote an Open Letter to C. Wright Mills. You can read it online here but I wanted to share this insightful passage which stood out to me: But recognizing the link between… Read More ›
In March 2012 it will be the 50th anniversary of the death of C Wright Mills. In this special series, Sociological Imagination will be considering the life, legacy and ideas of this unique man and what they mean for Sociology in an age of austerity.
As much as I dislike the ideas of Ayn Rand, I think this animation is marvellous. I’d love to see something along these lines exploring the ideas of C. Wright Mills:
The latest issue of the BFI’s Sight & Sound has an illuminating interview with Ava DuVernay, director of Selma, in which she describes her sensibility and approach to directing. The film itself resists a tendency towards hagiography, instead focusing upon Martin… Read More ›
The concept of Sociological Imagination entered circulation in the 1959 book of the same name by the American Sociologist C. Wright Mills. It moves from a prophetic opening (‘Nowadays men often feel that their private lives are a series of… Read More ›
by Hannes Antonschmidt* If he could look into the faces of work commuters on public trains of Western cities today, C. Wright Mills would be quickly convinced of the continuing relevance of his 1951 book, “White Collar – The American… Read More ›
One of my favourite passages by C Wright Mills concerns the tendency of academics to “slip so readily into unintelligibility”. An “elaborate vocabulary” and “involved manner of speaking and writing” become props for a professional self-image which defines itself, in… Read More ›
C.W. Mills’ (1959) call for a ‘Sociological Imagination’, the suggestion that social, historical and biographical dimensions be considered as integral in the analysis of social life, is important. By highlighting the interplay between individual and society, between private ‘troubles’ and… Read More ›
Let me confess a sin. The opening chapter from C Wright Mills’ The Sociological Imagination was the very first piece of required reading handed to me as an undergraduate. It also holds the distinction of beginning a chain of photocopied chapters and… Read More ›
In many academic circles today anyone who tries to write in a widely intelligible way is liable to be condemned as a ‘mere literary man’ or, worse still, ‘a mere journalist.’ Perhaps you have already learned that these phrases, as… Read More ›
There has been much discussion about the ongoing marketisation of British academia. One of the best argued and important analyses is John Brewer’s recent book The public value of the social sciences in which he critiques against the deeply flawed redutionism of… Read More ›
Today, we laborers in the groves of academia are pitted against one another in a quest for increased productivity. Academic departments and units compete against one another for increasingly scarce goods, such as the right to hire faculty; individual scholars… Read More ›
Originally this column was intended to chart my way through my first formal study of sociology. I’d tripped from one degree to another, with some arty, creative, musical projects in between and ended up in sociology. Apparently, accidentally. When I… Read More ›
In this video, Dalton Conley discusses the C.W.Mills’ idea that a successful sociologist makes the familiar strange.
A short documentary on C. Wright Mills life, theories, accomplishments, and impacts on society. Not exactly the slickest film you’re likely to find on the internet but a useful and sympathetic overview of his work.
Often when speaking of post-war developments in pragmatism, many people tend to focus on the philosophy of the latter Wittgenstein or Rorty. However, such an exclusive focus tends to eclipse other notable contributions. In Cornel West’s genealogy of pragmatism, C…. Read More ›
“C. Wright Mills” on Bundlr
By permission of the estate of C. W. Mills. Photo by Yaroslava. “The independent artist and intellectual are among the few remaining personalities equipped to resist and to fight the stereotyping and consequent death of genuinely lively things. Fresh perception now… Read More ›
Celebrating the 50th anniversary of C. Wright Mills’ death, Sociological Imagination pays a respectful and moving tribute to the man who gave this forum its name through the legacy of his classic 1959 book, The Sociological Imagination, a veritable manifesto for… Read More ›
By permission of the estate of C. W. Mills. Photo by Yaroslava.
After a particularly inspiring session at the BSA Conference this year to celebrate the 50th anniversary of C. Wright Mills’ death, I have started to read The Sociological Imagination again. It was a standard introductory book for sociology students and… Read More ›
This podcast is a recording of Mike O’Donnell’s talk at the C. Wright Mills session from the BSA conference in April 2012. Mike has written for SI on similar themes in the past: Charles Wright Mills’ Sociological Imagination and why we fail to… Read More ›
This podcast is a recording of John Holmwood’s talk at the C. Wright Mills session from the BSA conference in April 2012. The snippet below is from the subsequent q&a session. (main podcast) (snippet)
In this podcast Les Back discusses the enduring significance of C. Wright Mills to sociology. He mentions a (fantastic) book during his talk which we’ve embedded below. Les Back on Sociology’s Promise
It has been over 50 years since C. Wright Mills wrote the Sociological Imagination. In that time the world has changed beyond recognition: the Cold War ended, the Keynesian consensus broke down, a globalizing neoliberalism rose to the ascendancy and… Read More ›