Public Sociology features a wide-ranging discussion of the controversial model of a social science that reaches out to non-academic audiences, including both average citizens and policymakers. This approach has been greeted with enthusiasm by supporters, and with skepticism and anxiety among critics. Both perspectives are well represented in this volume.
Some of the critical voices question whether public sociology is even a good idea. Others dissent, arguing for a strong program in professional sociology as an alternative. Still others express concern that public sociology promotes a liberal-left political agenda, despite its nonpartisan pretensions. Some elements of the model are queried, such as "critical sociology." Others are supportive--discussing personal experiences, the benefits of an engaged social science, and how it could take social science into a broader, global marketplace.
Following an introduction by the editor, the contributions include: David Boyns and Jesse Fletcher, "Public Relations, Disciplinary Identity, and the Strong Program in Professional Sociology," Jonathan H. Turner, "Is Public Sociology Such a Good Idea?" Steven Brint, "Guide to the Perplexed," Vincent Jeffries, "Piritim A. Sorokin's Integralism and Public Sociology," Norella M. Putney, Dawn E. Alley, and Vern L. Bengston, "Social Gerontology as Public Sociology in Action," Edna Bonacich, "Working with the Labor Movement: A Personal Journey in Organic Public Sociology," Christopher Chase-Dunn, "Globabl Public Social Science," Neil McLauglin, Lisa Kowalchuk, and Kerry Turcotte, "Why Sociology Does Not Need to be Saved," Michael Burawoy, "Third-Wave Sociology and the End of Pure Science," Patricia Madoo Lengerman and Jill Niebrugge-Brantley, "Back to the Future: Settlement Sociology, 1885i?1/2-1930," Sean McMahon, "From the Platform: Public Sociology in the Speeches of Edward A. Ross," Chet Ballard, "The Origin and Early History of the Association for Humanist Sociology," and Robert Prus, "The Intellectual Canons of Public Sociology."