Out Now: J Sumerau’s review of Jooyoung Lee’s “Blowin’ Up: Rap Dreams in South Central” #sssi #ethnography

We have just published J Sumerau’s review of Jooyoung Lee’s book “Blowin’ Up: Rap Dreams in South Central”. Sumerau who has written a number of reviews and articles for our journal says that “with this book Lee both offers a rich, ethnographic portrait of a fascinating case at the intersection of music, race/class/gender, and emerging adulthood. At the same time, though, he also utilizes this case to outline two concepts that may be incredibly useful for researchers in the ongoing pursuit of greater understanding of the actions, beliefs, feelings, and experiences of people from varied marginalized  backgrounds and social locations.”

SSSI members can download J Sumerau’s review by clicking the image below. To join SSSI and subscribe to Symbolic Interaction from $31 (£23) please click HERE. 


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New Article on Theories of Self and Emotion in Symbolic Interactionism #sssi #sociology

In their article “Two Faces of Self and Emotion in Symbolic Interactionism: From Process to Structure and Culture—And Back” Linda A. Francis and Richard E. Adams trace the development of Affect Control Theory and Identity Theory and outline some paradigmatic changes that might reconcile some differences.

SSSI members can download Francis’ and Adams’ article by clicking the image below. To join SSSI and subscribe to Symbolic Interaction from $31 (£23) please click HERE.


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Symbolic Interactionism and Artificial Intelligence #sssi #sociology #AI

Over the past few years, there has been plenty of discussion about artificial intelligence. Numerous books have been published on the topic and the newspapers and broadcast media are brimful with publications on how our world will be changed by ‘AI’. The discussions reach from novel ‘intelligent’ devices in the home and self-driving cars to ‘intelligent machines’ and ‘robots’ that are said to replace people in many workplaces. These growing debates are related to activities by governments to prioritize ‘AI’ for example “to create a national defence strategy” (NYT) and “to boost investment and set ethical guidelines” (European Commission 2018).

Symbolic Interactionism with its long-standing concern with the mind and cognition has plenty to contribute to these discussions and developments. Since Mead’s (1934) “Mind, Self and Society“, if not earlier, (symbolic) interactionists have explored the reflexive relationship between  action and cognition. Some of this research has been published in Symbolic Interaction, the scholarly journal of the ‘Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction‘.

Save for recent book reviews

Gottschalk, Simon (2015). Neuro Growth. (Review of Neuro: The New Brain Sciences and the Management of the Mind By Nikolas Rose, Joelle M. Abi‐Rached. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2013. 335 (paper), ISBN 978‐0‐691‐14960‐8.)

Balmer, Andrew (2014). This Is Your Brain on Neuroscience. (Review of Sociological Reflections on the Neurosciences Edited By M. Pickersgill and I. van Keulen, Emerald Group Publishing: Bingley, UK, 2011, £77.95 (hardback) 324 pp, ISBN: 978‐1‐84855‐880‐9.)

a few articles in Symbolic Interaction are devoted to the relationship between symbolic interactionism and artificial intelligence, such as

Ryan McVeigh’s article (2015) “Basic‐Level Categories, Mirror Neurons, and Joint‐Attention Schemes: Three Points of Intersection Between G.H. Mead and Cognitive Science” explores how recent developments in the cognitive sciences relate to the work of Mead and other (symbolic) interactionists,


Jörg Strübing’s article (2011) “Bridging the Gap: On the Collaboration between Symbolic Interactionism and Distributed Artificial Intelligence in the Field of Multi‐Agent Systems Research” discusses the relationship between symbolic interactionism and distributed artificial intelligence.

These and other book reviews and research articles reveal interactionists’ perspectives on artificial intelligence and other developments in the cognitive and computer sciences. They highlight the bearing of classic texts like Mead’s ‘Mind, Self and Society‘ as well as contemporary interactionist research on current debates on the development and impact of AI on our social world.


Other related interactionist publications:

Alač, Morana. 2011. Handling Digital Brains. A Laboratory Study of Multimodal Semiotic Interaction in the Age of Computers. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Button, Graham, Jeff Coulter, John Lee, und Wes Sharrock. 1995. Computers, Minds and Conduct. Oxford: Wiley.

Gottschalk, Simon. 2018. The Terminal SelfLondon: Routledge.

Suchman, Lucy. 2007. Human-Machine Reconfigurations: Plans and situated actions. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Please send further references in the comments to add to the list.


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New Book Review out! Carley Geiss on Michael K. Corman’s’ Paramedics on and Off the Streets’ #sssi #sociology #ethnography

There is a substantial interest in ethnographies of work, not only in sociology but also by practitioners who are subject of ethnographic studies. In her review of Michael K. Corman’s ‘Paramedics On and Off the Streets’ Carley Geiss (University of South Florida) highlights this double-relevancy of ethnography and writes that Corman’s book “is extremely relevant for public health scholars, health care professionals, and policy-makers” while also being “an expert demonstration of the value of examining context and everyday practices”.

SSSI members can download Carley Geiss’s review by clicking the image below. To join SSSI and subscribe to Symbolic Interaction from $31 (£23) please click HERE. 

Geiss on Corman

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New Book Review: Joe Kotarba on “Designed for Hi-Fi Living” #sssi #music #cct #sociology

We have just published Joe Kotarba’s review of Janet Borgerson’s and Jonathan Schroeder’s ‘Designed for Hi-Fi Living’. Kotarba writes that “[T]he authors curated a well-selected group of midcentury (1950s and 1960s) American pop record albums. They scoured record bins, from Providence to Berkeley, and their own extensive collection for album covers that told stories about the American dream for middle-class respectability. The authors interpret and critique them in term of the ways they representor indexthe modern, postwar American imagination. The book itself is simply beautiful.” 

SSSI members can download Kotarba’s review by clicking the image below. To join SSSI and subscribe to Symbolic Interaction from $31 (£23) please click HERE. 

Kotarba on Hi-fi Living

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New Book Review: Neil Jenkings’ on Charles Goodwin’s “Co-operative Action” #sssi #emca #sociology #linguistics #anthropology

We have just published K. Neil Jenkings’ review of Charles Goodwin’s “Co-operative Action”. Jenkings writes that “[T]hrough Co-operative Action Goodwin has left us an integrated vision of human capacities, and indeed of what it is to be human, and to my mind this impressive book helps realize that vision as an example of collaborative co-operative action in its own right. This book is more than just a tour de force, therefore, it is something to be taken up and put to work for new ends.”

SSSI members can download Jenkings’ review of this splendid book by clicking the image below. To join SSSI and subscribe to Symbolic Interaction from $31 (£23) please click HERE. 

jenkings on Goodwin.jpeg

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Symbolic Interaction New Issue Vol.41(3) #sssi #sociology


Driving to Work: The Front Seat Work of Paramedics to and from the Scene

Michael K. Corman

Pages: 291-310


Generic Processes in Aligning the Multiple Bases of Identity: The Case of Becoming a Ministry Student

Arthur McLuhan

Pages: 311-333


Agency‐Without‐Choice: The Visual Rhetorics of Long‐Acting Reversible Contraception Promotion


Emily S. Mann & Patrick R. Grzanka

Pages: 334-356

Narrative Methods for Differential Diagnosis in a Case of Autism

Jason Turowetz & Douglas W. Maynard

Pages: 357-383

Narrative Manhood Acts: Batterer Intervention Program Graduates’ Tragic Relationships

Douglas Schrock, Janice McCabe & Christian Vaccaro

Pages: 384-410




“Sociologist as Hero”? Robert Park, the Chicago School, and the Origin and Destination of Sociology

Shane Blackman

Pages: 411-414


The Great Sociological Eye, Then and Now

Alex Dennis

Pages: 415-417


The Chessworld and Its Tiny Publics

Taylor Price

Pages: 418-420


Doing and Writing Culture as Ordinary Action and Interaction: Collected Essays

Will Gibson

Pages: 421-424


 The Social Promise of Economic Reproduction

Jakob Christian Jekat

Pages: 425-427


On the Grand Bazaar of Monies

Arne Dressler

Pages: 428-430


The Queer Code of the Street

Christopher T. Conner

Pages: 431-433


Social Movements from the Bottom‐up: Diversity, Identity, and Participation in the Shetkari Sanghatana Movement

Lakshmi Srinivas

Pages: 434-436


“And What Do You Do for a Living?” Reflections on Making a Life in the University

Leslie Irvine

Pages: 437-439

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