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Series: Critical Perspectives on Social Science

Plasti(e)cological Thinking: Working out an (Infra)structural Geoerotics

Abhisek Ghosal, BGR Campus, Bengaluru, India

January 2023 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-596-8
Availability: In stock
108pp. ¦ $39 £31 €37

This monograph, 'Plasti(e)cological Thinking: Working out an (Infra)structural Geoerotics,' seeks to put forward ‘plasti(e)cological thinking’ as an advanced and ‘new’ epistemic framework which can facilitate readers to think beyond the stratified planetarity that ends up breaking the earth down into territories and strata, blocs and codes, fragments and pieces, ‘sides’ and ‘besides.’ ‘Plasti(e)cological thinking’ is at once grounded in the logics of ‘deterritorialization’ and ‘rhizomatics’ thereby calling the structured and well-thought-out ways of looking into planetary phenomena into question and at times contingent upon the pervasive trajectories of ‘zoe-politics’ which enables it to cut across varied segmentarities on the ‘Plane of Consistency’. Divided into three chapters, this book draws on critical theory, continental thinking, and certain Indian eco-texts to put a spotlight on the nuanced operation of ‘plasti(e)cological thinking’. In a nutshell, this book stands wedded to the production of the ‘new’ and is a contribution to the domain of planetary thinking.

The Good, Green Gold of Spring: A Conservation Sociology of the Island Marble Butterfly

Jon Dahlem, Bellevue University

October 2022 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-523-4
Availability: In stock
168pp. ¦ $52 £41 €49

This book presents a case study of Island Marble Butterfly (IMB) conservation from an environmental sociological perspective. Using qualitative methods, the study explicates various social components of a collaboration of stakeholders working together to protect the species from extinction. Rediscovered in 1998 after being presumed extinct for nearly a century, the IMB persists exclusively among the San Juan Islands, WA, where the efforts of scientists, local conservationists, government employees, and non-profit organizations have sustained the species, even achieving a listing under the Endangered Species Act. For these reasons and many others, the IMB presents a case in some ways fascinating for its idiosyncrasies and in other ways indicative of broader trends in conservation work in an era of rapid global biodiversity loss. From the study emerges a call for increased sociological research that contributes knowledge beneficial to conservation practice, or what the book calls “conservation sociology.” The book reviews existing literature in this space and provides a framework for constructing research, theory, and application in conservation sociology. As the social components of IMB conservation are explored, so too are components of conservation sociology. The book describes competing norms and beliefs among IMB stakeholders, demonstrating the capacity of conservation sociology to describe and interpret social phenomena in conservation work; explores power dynamics in the collaboration, using sociological theory to interpret significant events in IMB conservation; and analyzes the significance of time in IMB conservation while providing suggestions for applied conservation work based in sociological perspectives. The book accomplishes three main goals. First, it provides an account of details and events in Island Marble Butterfly conservation. Second, it defines, positions, and develops conservation sociology. Third, it demonstrates original research in conservation sociology, resulting in a deep look at the complexities of the social components of species conservation.

Dimensions of Shared Agency: A Study on Joint, Collective and Group Intentional Action

Giulia Lasagni, Europa-Universität Flensburg, Germany

July 2021 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-127-4
Availability: In stock
233pp. ¦ $60 £45 €51

"Dimensions of Shared Agency" investigates the way in which standard philosophical accounts have been dealing with the issue of collective actions. In particular, the book focuses on the ‘Big Five’ of analytical social ontology (namely, Michael Bratman, Margaret Gilbert, Philip Pettit, John R. Searle and Raimo Tuomela) and their accounts of shared/collective intentions and actions. Through systematic readings of different positions in the debate, the author proposes original ways of analyzing and classifying current theories of shared agency according to whether they advance a member-level or a group-level account of shared agency. While member-level accounts (MLA) are theories of shared agency based on individuals’ attitudes and actions, group-level accounts (GLA) give attention to the group of individuals considered as a whole, i.e., as an agent itself. Criticism arises against the idea that the Big Five have proposed stable group-level accounts suitable for explaining the case of shared agency as a group-level phenomenon. The widespread tendency in the debate is to endorse a perspective called holistic individualism, which maintains that high-level explanations are objective even though social facts are ontologically reducible to facts about individuals. Lasagni argues that as long as holistic individualism is held, the GLA is reducible to the MLA because holistic individualism upholds ontological individualism based on a deep individualistic premise, fixing the special status of individual agents as natural persons. The premise makes the claim to treat groups as agents contradictory to the general framework of the theory. This book profiles an alternative interpretation according to which agency should be considered as a functional kind, which is equally instantiated by different systems, such as individual human beings and organized social groups. In this way, the author claims, the reduction of the social can be avoided. "Dimensions of Shared Agency" will be of interest to doctoral students, researchers, and scholars interested in social ontology and the philosophy of the social sciences. It can also be utilised as supplementary reading or an introduction to philosophy students and scholars who are first approaching the philosophy of collective intentionality and shared agency.

Young People and Social Media: Contemporary Children’s Digital Culture

Edited by Steve Gennaro, York University, Toronto, Canada and Blair Miller, York University, Toronto, Canada

August 2021 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-172-4
Availability: In stock
455pp. ¦ $89 £67 €77

‘Young People and Social Media: Contemporary Children’s Digital Culture’ explores the practices, relationships, consequences, benefits, and outcomes of children’s experiences with, on, and through social media by bringing together a vast array of different ideas about childhood, youth, and young people’s lives. These ideas are drawn from scholars working in a variety of disciplines, and rather than just describing the social construction of childhood or an understanding of children’s lives, this collection seeks to encapsulate not only how young people exist on social media but also how their physical lives are impacted by their presence on social media. One of the aims of this volume in exploring youth interaction with social media is to unpack the structuring of digital technologies in terms of how young people access the technology to use it as a means of communication, a platform for identification, and a tool for participation in their larger social world. During longstanding and continued experience in the broad field of youth and digital culture, we have come to realize that not only is the subject matter increasing in importance at an immeasurable rate, but the amount of textbooks and/or edited collections has lagged behind considerably. There is a lack of sources that fully encapsulate the canon of texts for the discipline or the rich diversity and complexity of overlapping subject areas that create the fertile ground for studying young people’s lives and culture. The editors hope that this text will occupy some of that void and act as a catalyst for future interdisciplinary collections. ‘Young People and Social Media: Contemporary Children’s Digital Culture’ will appeal to undergraduate students studying Child and Youth Studies and—given the interdisciplinary nature of the collection— scholars, researchers and students at all levels working in anthropology, psychology, sociology, communication studies, cultural studies, media studies, education, and human rights, among others. Practitioners in these fields will also find this collection of particular interest.

Love as human virtue and human need and its role in the lives of long-term prisoners

A multidisciplinary exploration

Christina Valeska Straub, University of Leeds

November 2020 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-966-0
Availability: In stock
238pp. ¦ $62 £46 €52

While the importance of love is rarely questioned, the effects of its presence and absence in certain environments often goes unnoticed. This book analyses the role of love in the lives of prisoners in a low security English prison. It seeks to provide a deeper insight into the meaning and role of love as a dual concept in the social-ecology of human existence, human development and well-being, and sets out to encourage a critical and practical (re)consideration of the potential benefits of love´s (re)inclusion into the prison set-up and purpose. This qualitative multidisciplinary analysis – based on psychological, moral philosophical, neuroscientific, and sociological literature – will appeal to postgraduates and early career researchers across the social sciences, as well practitioners of Criminal Justice and others interested in offender rehabilitation, and the effects of prison.

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