Journeys in Sociology

From First Encounters to Fulfilling Retirements

Edited by Rosalyn Benjamin Darling and Peter J. Stein
Book Cover

PB: $29.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-1475-5
Publication: May 17

HC: $99.50
EAN: 978-1-4399-1474-8
Publication: May 17

Ebook: $29.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-1476-2
Publication: May 17

250 pages
6 x 9
22 halftones

Twenty-two eminent retired sociologists reflect on their lives and their career choices

Read the Introduction (pdf).

Description

For most sociologists, their life’s work does not end with retirement. Many professors and practitioners continue to teach, publish, or explore related activities after leaving academia. They also connect with others in the field to lessen the isolation they sometimes feel outside the ivory tower or an applied work setting .

The editors and twenty contributors to the essential anthology Journeys in Sociology use a life-course perspective to address the role of sociology in their lives. The power of their personal experiences—during the Great Depression, World War II, or the student protests and social movements in the 1960s and ‘70s—magnify how and why social change prompted these men and women to study sociology. Moreover, all of the contributors include a discussion of their activities in retirement.

From Bob Perrucci, Tuck Green, and Wendell Bell, who write about issues of class, to Debra Kaufman and Elinore Lurie, who explain how gender played a role in their careers, the diverse entries in Journeys in Sociology provide a fascinating look at both the influence of their lives on the discipline and the discipline on these sociologists’ lives.

Contributors include: David J. Armor, Wendell Bell, Glen H. Elder, Jr., Henry Fischer, Janet Zollinger Giele, Charles S. (Tuck) Green III, Peter Mandel Hall, Elizabeth Higginbotham, Debra Kaufman, Corinne Kirchner, Elinore E. Lurie, Gary T. Marx, Robert Perrucci, Fred L. Pincus, Thomas Scheff, Arthur Shostak, David R. Simon, Natalie J. Sokoloff, Edward A. Tiryakian, Joyce E. Williams, and the editors

Published in collaboration with the American Sociological Association Opportunities in Retirement Network.

Reviews

"Journeys in Sociology is a fascinating blend of memoir and social meaning, revealing how history and social location play out in lives and careers. These engaging narratives display myriad academic paths as the authors disclose how their lives shaped their sociology and sociology shaped their lives. The collection is rich in detail about how eminent scholars remake themselves over the life course and how they continue their sociology after retirement. It is a delightful read."
Maxine Baca Zinn, Professor Emeritus of Sociology, Michigan State University, and co-author of Diversity in Families

"Journeys in Sociology permits sociologists and all those with an interest in that field to understand how becoming a sociologist has affected people's lives and careers. By doing so it helps all of us, no matter how we've spent our lives, to better understand the consequences of our career choices. In addition, it helps us plan our retirement. The editors and contributors show us why most retired sociologists will maximize the benefits of retirement if they remain active but, at the same time, take as much advantage as they can of the new freedoms that retirement provides."
—Robert Weiss, Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, Senior Fellow at the Institute of Gerontology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston and author of The Experience of Retirement

"Journeys in Sociology now provides a template for presenting the experiences of retiring/retired gerontologists.... No single route to retirement appears. Turning points over the life course greatly matter. Many encountered religious prejudice or socioeconomic disadvantages when young, which sensitized them to the marginality of others. Becoming sociologists initially appeared an accidental process. Still, virtually every contributor was drawn during graduate training to the power of ideas, which they then applied to real-life problems.... Despite distinctive trajectories in life histories, there are no bitter, unhappy jeremiads in Journeys in Sociology ."
—The Gerontologist

"Certainly for students of ageing and the lifecourse it is a fascinating, inspiring and often moving collection of essays which grants us important insights into the post-retirement world.... Each essay offers a 'journey' through the lives and careers of the contributors who weave theoretical insight with personal experience in a compelling pattern that highlights the influence of family, class, race and gender both on their particular sociological interests and their career trajectories."
—Ageing & Society

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction • Rosalyn Benjamin Darling

Part I: Children of the Great Depression
1. Toward a Sociology of the Future • Wendell Bell
2. Semper Sociology • Edward A. Tiryakian
3. Three Lives in Two Americas • Robert Perrucci
4. The Life Course of My Career • Glen H. Elder Jr.
5. Six Sociologists from Wayne County, Ohio • Janet Zollinger Giele
6. The Sociological Consequences of Choosing Radical Parents: The Political, the Personal, and the Professional • Peter Mandel Hall
7. My Professional Life: A Brief Memoir • Thomas Scheff
8. My Life in Sociology, Sociology in My Life • Elinore E. Lurie
9 Have You Noticed . . . ? • Corinne Kirchner

Part II: Coming of Age in the Postwar Years
10. A Life in Sociology • Charles S. Green III
11. Permission Slip for Life as an Applied Sociologist • Arthur Shostak
12. What’s It All About? Reflections on Meaning in a Career • Gary T. Marx
13. My Journey with Sociology • Joyce E. Williams
14. Sociology, Politics, and Policy • David J. Armor
15. The Last of Life for Which the First Was Made • Debra Kaufman
16. A Sociological Memoirist • Fred L. Pincus
17. Retiree • Natalie J. Sokoloff
18. Spreading the Sociological Imagination to Lay Audiences • David R. Simon
19. Networking across Stages of a Career • Elizabeth Higginbotham
20. The Impact of Sociology on One Man’s Life • Henry Fischer

Conclusion • Peter J. Stein

Contributors
Index

About the Author(s)

Rosalyn Benjamin Darling is Professor Emerita, Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Visiting Scholar, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and the author of ten books including Disability and Identity: Negotiating Self in a Changing Society.

Peter J. Stein is Professor Emeritus, William Paterson University, and Senior Researcher, University of North Carolina Institute on Aging. He is the editor of Report of the Forum on North Carolina’s Aging Workforce and co-author of several books, including six editions of Sociology (with Beth B. Hess and Elizabeth W. Markson) and Social Gerontology: Issues and Prospects (with Elizabeth W. Markson).


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