Routledge International Handbook of Failure
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This Handbook examines the study of failure in social sciences, its manifestations in the contemporary world, and the modalities of dealing with it – both in theory and in practice. It draws together a comprehensive approach to failing, and invisible forms of cancelling out and denial of future perspectives.
Underlining critical mechanisms for challenging and reimagining norms of success in contemporary society, it allows readers to understand how contemporary regimes of failure are being formed and institutionalized in relation to policy and economic models, such as neo-liberalism. While capturing the diversity of approaches in framing failure, it assesses the conflations and shifts which have occurred in the study of failure over time.
Intended for scholars who research processes of inequality and invisibility, this Handbook aims to formulate a critical manifesto and activism agenda for contemporary society. Presenting an integrated view about failure, the Handbook will be an essential reading for students in sociology, social theory, anthropology, international relations and development research, organization theory, public policy, management studies, queer theory, disability studies, sports, and performance research.
1. FAIL! Are We Headed Towards Critical Failure Studies?
Adriana Mica, Mikołaj Pawlak, Anna Horolets, and Paweł Kubicki
PART 1: Critical Failure Studies in the Making
2. Failure in Intercultural Communication
Milene Mendes de Oliveira
3. Entrepreneurial Failure Contextualized: Sociocultural Approaches
Heli Helanummi-Cole and Rohini Jalan
4. Fear of Failure in Athletes: Fanning the Fire of Sport Desire or Burning Out?
Henrik Gustafsson, Paul Davis, and Louise Davis
5. Career Failure: Forms and Levels of Analysis from a Sociological Perspective
6. Sociology of Failures in Clinical Trials
7. From Varieties of Failure to Failure Judgments: The Sociology of Valuation and Failure Studies
Thorsten Peetz, Frank Meier, and Désirée Waibel
PART 2: Failure Regimes and Power
8. Failed Identities: On the Processes and Meanings of Unformed Alternate Selves
9. The Study of Failures and the Problem of Contingency
10. Successful Failure
11. The Theatre of Failure: Social Media’s Role in Demonstrating Mundane Disruption
12. Economising Failure and Assembling a Failure Regime
Liisa Kurunmäki, Andrea Mennicken, and Peter Miller
13. Foreign Policy Failure: A Narrative Analysis
Kai Oppermann and Alexander Spencer
14. Valuing Plurality: Objectivist and Interpretivist Approaches to the Study of Mistakes and Failures in International Relations
PART 3: Restoring, Learning and Attributing Blame for Failure
15. Before Breakdown, After Repair: The Art of Maintenance
Jérôme Denis and David Pontille
16. Cloud Backup and Restore: The Infrastructure of Digital Failure
A. R. E. Taylor
17. Governance Failure, Metagovernance Failure, and the Pedagogy of Failure
18. Beyond Policy Accidents: Learning the Lessons of Policy Failures
19. Market Failures
20. Preventing Major Disasters: Success and Failure as Two Sides of the Same Coin
Jan Hayes and Sarah Maslen
21. Blame Games: Stories of Crises, Causes, and Culprits
PART 4: Failure Trouble and Resistance in Neoliberalism
22. Counter-interpretations of Failure from Literature, Sociology and Social Philosophy
23. The Material Ecologies of Policy Failure: Ruptures of Bodies and of State
Kelly Fagan Robinson and Timothy Carroll
24. Financialization and Failure: Lessons from the Anxious University
25. Market Failures and Failed Marketization: Neoliberalism, Development and Poverty
26. Failing the States: The Fragility of the State-Failure Paradigm
27. Neoliberalism, Policy Failures, and the COVID-19 Crisis: Going Beyond Hirschman’s Fracasomanía
PART 5: Post-Failure or Reimagined Failure?
28. Experiments as Successful Failures
29. How Science Fails Successfully
30. Politics, Sociology, and the "Inevitability" of Failure
Keith Jacobs and Jeff Malpas
31. Cripistemologies of the Body: Knowing through Disability
32. Beyond Failure: Queer Theory’s Fallibilities
Thomas Clément Mercier
33. Gravity Matters: A Meditation on Falling and Failing
Ann Cooper Albright
34. Crashing to Earth: Redefining Failure in a Time of Precarity
35. Discovery and Inquiry Pathways to Navigating the Routledge International Handbook of Failure
Gertrude J. Fraser and Claire Holman Thompson
"Unlike most Handbooks in the social sciences, this one is groundbreaking and meets two difficult goals: one is to provide a comprehensive assessment of the emergent field of failure studies, and the second, which is to use the idea of failure to cast new light on many central problems of the social sciences, such as contingency, accountability, and economization. This Handbook is a milestone which will be widely read by researchers in many fields."
Arjun Appadurai, Professor Emeritus of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University, USA
"In a comprehensive way, the Routledge International Handbook of Failure provides new insights from different perspectives on the important topic of failure. This handbook is of critical importance because it can help scholars and practitioners overcome a pervasive anti-failure bias that restricts our thinking and actions. I highly recommend this book."
Dean Shepherd, Ray and Milann Siegfried Professor of Entrepreneurship, University of Notre Dame, USA
"This new book on failure is a welcome addition to this fascinating and important topic. I hope it meets with great success."
Gary Wickham, Professor Emeritus of Sociology, Murdoch University, Australia
"This handbook highlights what can only be described as a failure of imagination in the social sciences concerning the concept of failure itself. The Handbook’s essays reframe our understanding of what the discourse of failure reveals and obscures. Far from being a self- evident concept—neutrally applied—the application of the pejorative, "failure," can too often prevent us from recognizing and seizing meaningful opportunities for advance or experimentation."
Ilene Grabel, Distinguished University Professor, University of Denver, USA
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