Sociology Conference 2013 “The Politics of Materiality”

10:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.

We are pleased to announce the Annual Sociology Conference "The Politics of Materiality" to be held Saturday, April 6th, 2013 @ The New School for Social Research. The conference will take place at 6 East 16thStreet Building, 11 floor.

“The Politics of Materiality” is an attempt to bring objects, spaces and technologies into account when analyzing political phenomena. The keynote speech will be delivered by Chandra Mukerji, Professor of Communication and Science Studies at the University of California, San Diego.

The conference will conclude with a roundtable discussion to address the increasing interest in materiality within the Social Sciences. Participating in the roundtable  will be our keynote speaker, Chandra Mukerji; Terence E. McDonnell, Kellogg Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Notre Dame and McKenzie Wark,Professor of Culture and Media at Eugene Lang College. The moderator of the roundtable discussion will be Professor Robin Wagner-Pacifici, Chair of the Sociology Department at the New School for Social Research. A reception will follow the roundtable.

More information on: http://on.fb.me/WaNSv9

Contact Email: materiality2013nssr@gmail.com

This event is open to the public. 



Additional Program details:

 

Annual NSSR Sociology Conference 2013

“The Politics of Materiality”

Saturday, April 6th, 2013 @ The New School for Social Research

6 East 16th Street, New York (11th Floor)

Schedule

9:15 am: Registration (Registration Desk 11th Floor)

Breakfast

10:00 – 11:30 am: Welcome Address and Keynote Speech

by Chandra Mukerji

(Location: Room 1103 – Wolff Room)

11:30 – 1:00 pm 1st Panel Session

Panel 1A: Technologies of Control 

Location: 1102

Presenters

Bryan Pfaffenberger, Associate Professor of Science, Technology and Society, University of Virginia:

Do Voting Machines Have Politics? 

Karen Levy, Graduate Student, Princeton University: The Automation of Compliance: Techno-Legal 

Regulation in the US Trucking Industry

Rebecca Collins-Nelsen, PhD Student, McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario: Gendered Artifacts: 

The Case of Tomboy Tools

Discussant: Rachel Sherman, Associate Professor of Sociology, New School for Social 

ResearchPanel 1B: Material Nationalism

Location: 1106

Presenters:

Jason Cons, Assistant Professor International Relations, Bucknell University: Spatial Corruptions: 

Demarcation, Development, and Overlapping Sovereignty at the India-Bangladesh Border

Kristin Surak, Assistant Professor of Comparative Sociology, Universität Duisburg-Essen:

Co-Prosperity Through a Bowl of Tea

María A Cabrera Arús, PhD Candidate, Sociology Department, New School for Social Research:

The Politics of Materiality in Socialist Cuba

Discussant: Meral Ugur Cinar, Mellon Post-Doctoral Fellow, Department of Sociology, New 

School for Social Research

Panel 1C: Environment, Resources and State-Formation

Location: 1103 Wolff Room

Presenters:

Elizabeth Gelber, PhD Student,Anthropology, Columbia University: The Making and Unmaking of a

Social World: A Pipeline Story

Keerati Chenpitayaton,PhD Candidate, Sociology and Historical Studies, New School for Social 

Research: Interimperial Networks of Materiality: The Case of Colonial Forest Politics in British-Burma 

and Thailand

Ian Gray, Research Fellow, Sciences Po, Médialab: The Democratic Republic of Carbon: The 

Materiality of Climate Change Politics on the Edges of Kinshasa, DRC

Discussant: Rafi Youatt, Assistant Professor of Politics, New School for Social Research

1:00 – 2:00 pm LUNCH BREAK 

(Room 1107)2:00 – 3:30 pm 2nd Panel Session

Panel 2A: Technologies of the Body

Location: 1106

Presenters:

Philip R. Olson, Assistant Professor, Department of Science and Technology in Society, Virginia 

Tech: Flush and Bone: Alkaline Hydrolysis and the Changing Politics of Human Remains

Liberty Walther Barnes, Research Associate, Department of Sociology, University of Cambridge, UK: 

“Sexy Technologies: Male Infertility and the Gendered Politics of Reproduction”

Alexander K. Davis, PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology, Princeton University: It’s a Privilege to 

Pee”: Gender, Culture, and the Social Organization of Bathrooms

Discussant: To be announced

Panel 2B: Turf and Territory

Location: 1103 (Wolff Room)

Presenters: 

Matt Patterson, PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology, University of Toronto: Spatial Sense 

Making in Urban Political Conflict: The Clash of Global and Local Sensibilities in Two Iconic 

Architectural Development Projects in Toronto

Robin Bartram, PhD Student, Department of Sociology, Northwestern University: Infrastructures of 

Epistemic Moments: Neighborhood “Improvement” and Change

Stacy Torres, PhD Student, Department of Sociology, New York University: Space, Place, and Age: 

Neighborhood Belonging and Estrangement Among Older Adults Aging in Place

Zach Richer, PhD Student, Sociology, University of Maryland: More Urban Than the City Itself, More 

Contemporary Than Now: A Social Topography of the Istinye Bazaar

Discussant: Vyjayanthi Rao, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, New School for Social 

Research

3:30 – 4:00 pm Coffee Break 

(Room 1103 Wolff Room)4:00 – 5:30 pm 3rd Panel Session

Panel 3A: Objects in Translation

Location: 1103 Wolff Room

Presenters: 

Fiona P. McDonald, PhD Candidate, Department of Anthropology, University College London, UK: 

Political Materials - A Case Study of Woolen Blankets in Contemporary Art and Indigenous Regalia in 

Canada and the USA

Jennifer Jordan, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee: 

Eating Biodiversity: The Changing Fates and Meanings of Apples, Tomatoes and Other Heirlooms

Terence E. McDonnell, Kellogg Assistant Professor of Sociology, University of Notre Dame: Cultural 

Entropy

Discussant: Iddo Tavory, Assistant Professor of Sociology, New School for Social Research

Panel 3B: Bioethics and the Materiality of Medicine

Location: 1106

Presenters: 

Ariel Merkel, PhD Student Sociology, New School for Social Research: Reproductive Technologies, 

Disabled Fetuses, and Women with Disabilities

Martine D. Lappé, Post-Doctoral Fellow, University of California, Los Angeles: Finding Cause: The 

Politics of Materiality in Autism Science

Anna Starshinina, Graduate Student, Department of Communication & Science Studies Program, 

University of California, San Diego: Decoding Mental Illnes: Using Genetic Technologies to Explain 

Bipolar Disorder

Discussant: Nicolas Langlitz, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, New School for Social

Research5:30 - 7:00 pm: Round Table Discussion: Ongoing Construction Sites: The future 

of Materiality in the Social Sciences

Location 1103 Wolff Room

Roundtable Participants:

Chandra Mukerji, Professor of Communication and Science Studies, Affiliated Faculty, Critical 

Gender Studies, UC San Diego 

Terence E. McDonnell. Kellogg Assistant Professor of Sociology, University of Notre Dame.

McKenzie Wark, Professor, Culture and Media, Eugene Lang College, The New School.

Moderator: Robin Wagner-Pacifici, Chair and Professor, Department of Sociology, New 

School for Social Research. 

7:00 – 8:00 pm: Reception

Location 1103 Wolff Room

 



Location:

Wolff Conference Room, 6 East 16th Street, room 1103

Admission:
Free; no tickets or reservations required; seating is first-come first-served



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