This annual graduate student conference is hosted on a rotating basis by one of several Chicago-area Sociology departments, including DePaul University, Illinois Institute of Technology, Loyola University, Northern Illinois University, Northwestern University, University of Notre Dame, the University of Chicago, and University of Illinois at Chicago. The conference provides an opportunity for graduate students to share their ethnographic scholarship with one another and get feedback from faculty and other graduate students based in the Chicago area and beyond.
2016 Conference Theme: “Beyond the Case Study: Connecting Theory and Generalizability”
Michael Burawoy is Professor of Sociology at the University of California at Berkeley. He has been a participant observer of industrial workplaces in four countries: Zambia, United States, Hungary and Russia. In his different projects he has tried to illuminate — from the standpoint of the working class — postcolonialism, the organization of consent to capitalism, the peculiar forms of class-consciousness and work organization in state socialism, and, finally, the dilemmas of transition from socialism to capitalism. Over the course of four decades of research and teaching, he has developed the extended case method that allows broad conclusions to be drawn from ethnographic research. He is the author of several books, including Manufacturing Consent: Changes in the Labor Process under Monopoly Capitalism (1979), two volumes co-authored with graduate students, Ethnography Unbound: Power and Resistance in the Modern Metropolis (1991) and Global Ethnography: Forces, Connections, and Imaginations in a Postmodern World (2000), as well as a collection of theoretical and methodological essays, The Extended Case Method: Four Countries, Four Decades, Four Great Transformations and One Theoretical Tradition (2009). Throughout his sociological career he has engaged with Marxism, seeking to reconstruct it in the light of his research and more broadly in the light of historical challenges of the late 20th and early 21st. centuries. He is the editor of Global Dialogue, the newsletter and magazine of the International Sociological Association.
Claudio E. Benzecry is Associate Professor of Communication Studies and Sociology (by courtesy) at Northwestern University. His book The Opera Fanatic: Ethnography of an Obsession (University of Chicago Press, 2011) received the Mary Douglas Award for best book in the Sociology of Culture (2012) and Honorable mention for the ASA Distinguished Book award (2014). He is also the Editor of two books on culture and knowledge, and has published articles on sociological theory, sociology of culture, and the arts in venues such as Sociological Theory, Ethnography, British Journal of Sociology and Theory & Society, among others. He’s currently conducting research on fashion, creativity and globalization.