How the music of human interaction can help us better understand the nature of social science research
The Strange Music of Social Life
A Dialogue on Dialogic Sociology
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With Andrew Abbott, Judith Blau, Diana Crane, Stacy Holman Jones, Shamus Khan, Vanina Leschziner, John Levi Martin, Chris McRae, Marc W. Steinberg and John Chappell Stowe
Michael Mayerfeld Bell, edited by Ann Goetting
The Strange Music of Social Life presents a dialogue on dialogic sociology, explored through the medium of music. Sociologist and composer Michael Mayerfeld Bell presents an argument that both sociology and classical music remain largely in the grip of a nineteenth-century totalizing ambition of prediction and control. He provides the refreshing approach of "strangency" to explain a sociology that tries to understand not only the regularities of social life but also the social conditions in which people do what we do not expect.
Nine important sociologists and musicians respond-often vigorously-to the conversation Bell initiates by raising pivotal questions. The Strange Music of Social Life concludes with Bell's reply to those responses and offers new insight into sociology and music sociology.
Michael Mayerfeld Bell is Professor of Community and Environmental Sociology at the University of Wisconsin Madison. He is the author or editor of seven books, three of which have won national awards. He is also a composer of grassroots and classical music and is a mandolinist, guitarist, and singer.
Ann Goetting is Professor of Sociology at Western Kentucky University. She is the author or editor of four previous books, including (with Sarah Fenstermaker) Individual Voices, Collective Visions: Fifty Years of Women in Sociology and (with Gary Paul Green) Mobilizing Communities: Asset Building as a Community Development Strategy (both Temple).