Oct/05
Michael Burawoy: The Color of Class Revisited: Four Decades in the Life of Zambian Miners

Michael Burawoy is Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, President of the International Sociological Association, and was recently also president of the American Sociological Association from 2002-2005 and is best known as author of Manufacturing Consent: Changes in the Labor Process under Monopoly Capitalism and as the leading proponent of public sociology.

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. His work on public sociology is most prominently shown in his presidential address to the American Sociological Association in 2004, where he divides sociology into four separate (yet overlapping) categories: public sociology, policy sociology (which has an extra-academic audience), professional sociology (which addresses an academic audience familiar with theoretical and methodological frameworks common to the discipline of sociology), and lastly critical sociology which, like public sociology, produces reflexive knowledge but which is only available to an academic audience, like professional sociology.