CfP Special Issue “Celebrating and Interrogating the Blumerian Legacy” #sssi #sociology #SymbolicInteraction

Special Issue Call For Papers

Jacqueline Low and Gary Bowden (Eds.)

Celebrating and Interrogating the Blumerian Legacy


Deadline to Submit Papers: September 30, 2019


As we mark the 50th  Anniversary of the publication of Blumer’s (1969) pivotal work Symbolic Interactionism: Perspective and Method, it is timely to address debates and critical claims central to the status and future of Blumerian interactionism with a special issue of Symbolic Interaction. We envision a mix of papers which both commemorate and critically assess Blumer himself, or Blumerian theory and methodology, as well as substantive papers that add to, or provide a corrective for, Blumerian interactionism.


Among the debates worthy of reassessment is Prus’ (1996:75) assertion, that Blumer “deserves … to be acknowledged as the single most important social theorist of the twentieth century” and Maines’ (2001)  claim  that  symbolic  interactionism  is  at  risk  of  being  subsumed  by  those  who  do  not acknowledge the perspective while still using its concepts and practices.


Ripe for debate as well is Abbott’s (1997) argument that Blumer’s emphasis on the symbolic, intersubjective side of the Chicago approach led him to underappreciate the importance of time, space and context. Similarly, papers might address the Iowa School (Couch 1986); Stryker’s (1980), and other’s claims that Blumerian interactionism is astructural, or Best’s (2006:5) conclusion that Blumer is a “tragic figure” who excelled at criticism and theory but conducted weak empirical research.


Papers might also address whether Blumer was the progenitor of an active and ongoing scholarly tradition that continues to grow theoretically and methodologically. Is the perspective thriving in some ways? Or has symbolic interactionism been reduced to the formulaic application of a set of standardized theoretical and methodological practices? Do interactionists still suffer from “analytic interruptus,” the failure of research to lead to fully developed concepts and theories (Lofland 1970:42-43)? In particular, we invite papers for this special issue on the following topics:

  • Intellectual biographies of Blumer
  • Blumer’s impact on symbolic interactionist theory
  • Blumer’s contribution to symbolic interactionist methodology
  • Sensitizing concepts
  • Generic social processes
  • “Formal” sociology
  • The charge against Blumerian interactionism of astructural bias
  • The current status of the Blumerian legacy for sociology as a whole
  • The future of Blumerian interactionism
  • Substantive research that extends or corrects Blumerian interactionism
  • The integrating of other theoretical approaches into the Blumerian tradition
  • Other related topics proposed by authors


Please submit all papers through the journal’s online portal:


Cover letters should mention that the submission is intended for the special issue commemorating the anniversary of Blumer’s (1969) book.  For more information, contact the special issue editors Jacqueline Low at and Gary Bowden at, or the editor-in-chief at

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SSSI Annual Meetings 2019 – Call for Abstracts and sessions #sssi #sociology

Dear Colleagues and a Friends

Abstract submissions for the 2019 SSSI Annual Meetings in New York City are also due on April 1, 2019.


I have already received some excellent and interesting abstracts and am getting very excited for the summer meetings – I hope to see all of you there!

Best wishes,



Stacey Hannem, PhD

Associate Professor & Department Chair

Vice-President, Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction

Department of Criminology

Wilfrid Laurier University

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SSSI Awards – Call for Nominations #sssi #sociology

Dear Colleagues and Friends, 

This is just a friendly reminder that nominations for the SSSI awards are due on March 30: For more information head over the the SSSI website:

Best wishes,




Stacey Hannem, PhD

Associate Professor & Department Chair

Vice-President, Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction

Department of Criminology

Wilfrid Laurier University

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Couch-Stone Symposium 2019 – Des Moines, Iowa, 16 – 18 May #sssi #conference #CfP


Couch-Stone Symposium

May 16-18, 2019

Des Moines, Iowa


Laurie Linhart, Des Moines Area Community College

David Schweingruber, Iowa State University

How should Symbolic Interactionism be taught in the undergraduate classroom? How can the Symbolic Interactionist perspective improve any college course? How should we be passing along Symbolic Interactionism to the next generations of scholars? How can Symbolic Interactionist research on teaching and learning inform our practice?

We are seeking…

Papers on all aspects of the scholarship of teaching and learning

Proposals to organize panels related to the conference theme

Papers for open paper sessions

Proposals to organize sessions

Submission Deadline: March 15, 2019

Make all submissions to:

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Symbolic Interaction Vol.42/1 – Thematic Issue ‘Technology, the Internet, and Social Media’ #sssi #sociology

We have jus published the latest issue of Symbolic Interaction (Vol 42/1). This issue of our journal is a Thematic Issue concerned with “Technology, the Internet and Social Media”. It includes Scott Harris’ introduction followed by 6 research articles, a review essay by Joel Best and 5 book reviews. The entire issue is open/free access.

Click HERE for access to the issue or in the Full Text/Pdf link for each article/review below.


Introduction to a Thematic Issue: Technology, The Internet, and Social Media

  • Pages: 3-5


Co‐Present Conversation as “Socialized Trance”: Talk, Involvement Obligations, and Smart‐Phone Disruption

  • Pages: 6-26

A video abstract is available at

Smartphones and Face‐to‐Face Interaction: Digital Cross‐Talk During Encounters in Everyday Life

  • Pages: 27-45

Couch Revisited: A Theoretical Treatment of The Information‐Technological Media of Imgur, Reddit, and Twitter

  • Pages: 46-69

Audience Design and Context Discrepancy: How Online Debates Lead to Opinion Polarization

  • Pages: 70-97

A video abstract is available at

Visual Narrative and Temporal Relevance: Segueing Instant Replay into Live Broadcast TV

  • Pages: 98-126

“A Give Grief Kind of Guy”: Help‐Seeking, Status, and the Experience of Helpers at a University IT Help Desk

  • Pages: 127-150


Big Pictures: Three Books on Social Progress

  • Pages: 151-158


Social Interaction via Terminals May Mean Termination of the Self

  • Pages: 159-161

The Medium and the Message

  • Pages: 162-166

Beyond the Sirens and Lights: The Technologically Governed Work of Emergency Medical Services

  • Pages: 167-169

Filipina Migrants and the Maintenance of Families Across Borders and Through Telecommunications

  • Pages: 170-172

The Future as a Sociological Problem

  • Pages: 173-176
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SSSI Notes Vol.47 No. 2

The latest issue of the SSSI Newsletter with information on the 2019 conference and much more can be downloaded HERE.

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2019 Annual Meetings of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction #sssi #sociology

The Program Planning Committee of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction is pleased to call for papers that address this year’s conference theme or that engage with any other aspect of symbolic interaction:

“Power, Structure, and Intersectionality in Symbolic Interaction”

Symbolic Interactionism has long been plagued (fairly or unfairly) with accusations of having an astructural bias and failing to adequately engage with the dynamics of power. Many symbolic interactionist scholars have defended the SI perspective against this charge and some have put forward explicit arguments for interactionist conceptions of both structure and power (see, notably, Fine and Kleinmann, 1983; Prus, 1999; Athens 2015). However, the “myth” of the astructural bias has continued to loom over SI and has had a marginalizing effect on the perspective (McGinty 2016). Current socio-political concerns about identity, representation, and marginality are ripe for analyses rooted in the SI tradition: analyses which attend carefully and explicitly to issues of power, structure, and intersectionalities. Indeed, these concerns involve many of the “underdog” groups that symbolic interactionists, as ethnographers and qualitative researchers of the margins, have long been concerned with. The theme of this year’s annual meeting encourages symbolic interactionists to face the criticisms of astructural bias head-on and to engage with issues of power, diversity, social structure, and conflict as they are interactionally realized and experienced by individuals and groups and implicated in social life.

We encourage the submission of individual papers and complete thematic panels (3-4 papers) that engage with the conference theme including, but not limited to, such topics as:

Gender Relations                                                        Social stratification
Gender Diversity and Identity                                    Power in ethnographic research
Race and Racialization                                               Media and power in discourse
Sexualities                                                                  Stigma and Marginalization
Domination and Subordination                                  Self and Identity in the Context of Power Relations Conflict in social life                                                   Social institutions and power
Agency and constraint

As always, we are also interested in and will accept papers and panels that engage with any and all aspects of symbolic interactionism, including theory, method, pedagogy, and symbolic interactionist analyses of any and all substantive topics.

Submission Process:

Please make your submission to the conference organizers by sending the following information to by April 1, 2019.

Paper Title
Abstract (maximum 250 words)
Author(s) Name(s) and Institutional Affiliation(s)
Contact email and telephone number

If you are submitting a complete thematic panel, please include a panel title as well as individual information for all presenters and their papers.

Inquiries and questions may be addressed directly to Stacey Hannem at shannem@wlu.caor at the email above.
Accommodations and Planning to Attend:

A limited number of rooms has been reserved at the Westin New York at Times Square for conference attendees at a special rate of $255 (single/double occupancy), $285 (triple occupancy), and $315 (quad occupancy). To access this rate you must book your room by July 18, 2019.

Click Here to Book the group rate with Westin Times Square New York


Registration and Membership:

All presenters will be required to be members of SSSI at the time of the conference. Information about Membership and Conference Registration will follow.

Program Planning Committee
Stacey Hannem, Vice President SSSI, Wilfrid Laurier University (Chair)
Thaddeus Muller, Past-Vice President SSSI, Lancaster University
Tim Hallett, Vice President elect SSSI, Indiana University Bloomington
Lisa-Jo van den Scott, Treasurer SSSI, Memorial University of Newfoundland
Thomas DeGloma, Past-President SSSI, Hunter College and CUNY Graduate Center

2019 Annual Meetings of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction

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