Oct 15

Next session 10/15

Please join us for the Social Theory Workshop, next Thursday Oct. 15 at 6pm (Wilder House, 5811 S Kenwood Ave)

“Some Myths About Ethnocentrism”
Adam Etinson
Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Chicago

All papers will be distributed in advance of the workshops via the Social Theory Workshop list serv. To join this list serv go to: lists.uchicago.edu and search for “Social Theory”

Jan 15

Winter 2015 workshop schedule

STW Winter 15 schedule REVISED

Sep 14

REVISED Workshop Schedule Autumn 2014

The following workshops will be held on Thursdays at 6pm at Wilder House (5811 S Kimbark Avenue) unless otherwise noted. Hors d’oeuvres and refreshments will be served.

**Special Event & Time: (Weds. Oct. 22, 4:30pm) Location TBD:

Oct. 22  “What Money Wants: An Economy of Desire”
Noam Yuran
Minerva Humanities Center, Tel Aviv University

Oct. 23    “ ‘In the Spirit of Ernst Thälmann:’ Weimar Communism, the Nation, and the 1970s West German Left.
David Spreen
PhD Candidate
Department of History
The University of Michigan

Please note earlier time for Oct 30:

Oct. 30 @ 5:30PM    “Political Disorientation: Queer Activism and Democratic Indeterminacy in Brazil”
Jay Sosa
PhD Candidate
Department of Anthropology
University of Chicago

Special Event co-sponsored by 3CT, CSRPC & CSGS: (Weds. Nov. 19, 4:30pm at 5733 S. University Ave, Community Room):

Nov. 19        “Behind Marx’s Hidden Abode: For an Expanded Conception of Capitalism”
Nancy Fraser
Loeb Professor of Philosophy and Politics, New School for Social Research
Einstein Fellow, Freie Universität-Berlin
Global Justice Chair, Collège d’études mondiales, Paris

Dec. 4    “Transitional Political-Economic Justice: The Israeli Bankers’ Trial and the Role of Law in the Unfolding of Neoliberalism”
Yaniv Ron-El
PhD Student
Department of Sociology
University of Chicago

May 14

Next workshop, May 15

Please join us  Thursday, May 15 at 6pm at Wilder House (5811 S. Kenwood Ave.) for the following paper and discussion at the Social Theory Workshop:

 “Making Do in the Promised Land: Work, Labor and Profit among Chicago’s New Africans”
Lisa Simeone
PhD Candidate
Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago

All papers will be distributed in advance of the workshops via the Social Theory Workshop list serv. To join this list serv go to: lists.uchicago.edu and search for “Social Theory”

Nov 13

Next Workshop Nov 7

Please join us for the next Social Theory Workshop, TOMORROW Thursday Nov. 7 at 6pm in Wilder House (5811 S Kenwood Ave).:

“Color Inspections” and the Predicaments of Racism: The Use of Border Theory to Ethnographically Documenting Color Hierarchies among Mexicans in South Chicago”

Sergio Lemus
PhD Candidate
Department of Anthropology
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

All papers will be distributed in advance of the workshops via the Social Theory Workshop list serv. To join this list serv go to: lists.uchicago.edu and search for “Social Theory”

All events will take place at 6pm in Wilder House (5811 S. Kenwood Ave)


Apr 13

Global Capitalism And The Crisis Of Work Conference

Global Capitalism And The Crisis Of Work

April 26 2013, 9:30 am–April 27 2013, 5:00 pm

Logan Center Performance Penthouse


The History, Social Theory, and Capitalism Project of the Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory; the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture; The Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality have convened a two-day conference on ” Global Capitalism and the Crisis of Work,” to be held at the University of Chicago on April 26 and 27, 2013. The conference will be devoted to the structural transformations of capitalism and of the world of work in recent decades. It will also investigate the relationship between these changes and the fortunes of various social movements, including those based on identities. Finally, it will ask about the future of work, itself.

Work and its social, cultural, and political problems have become increasingly peripheral to academic studies on both the theory and the practice of democratic politics and of social movements in recent decades. Ironically, this diminished interest in work – its history, meaning, political potential, and likely place in the future world – has occurred during a fundamental transformation of work and its social meaning that cries out for critical analysis.

From the 1830s to the 1970s, movements that sought to create more egalitarian or democratic societies focused largely on the problem of work. In retrospect, one can argue that the dual crisis of Fordist/Keynesian capitalism in the West and “actually existing socialism” in the East began a long-term structural decline of the industrial working class and, hence, of the social basis of working-class movements and their power. Over the ensuing decades, automation and industrialized agriculture have displaced labor in factory and field. Meanwhile, globalization has sent industrial production and service employment on an international search for low-cost non-unionized workers, but the relentless advance of automation has also begun to limit the growth of proletarian labor even in the low wage countries. However, the rise of automation and the declining salience of industrial work have not led to the emancipation from toil. Furthermore, the performance of work continues to be a condition for social and political belonging. This remains true even at present as the labor time has increased for some and been eliminated through long-term unemployment for many others.

These developments in the problem of work associated with neo-liberal global capitalism also have implications for understanding the contemporaneous rise to prominence of social movements focused on gender, race, nation, ethnicity, and sexuality. Academics have lately increasingly turned their attention to the racialized and gendered conceptualizations of categories and experiences of work and, more generally, to the relation of different populations historically to the uneven global development of capitalism. Nevertheless, the salience of these racialized and gendered patterns for the capitalist restructuring of work calls for further investigation. We believe it is time to rethink the relation of identity-based movements to the recent development of capitalism and to the structural transformations of work. Finally, the combination of rapid advances in technology and the urgent demands for restraint in order to preserve the global ecology asks how work and its socio-political significance will be transformed in the future.

The goal of this conference is to take stock of these transformations and to ponder their implications. We look forward to learning about your reflections on problems of work – including speculative reflections on the broader issues raised by the conference. It is our sense that a major rethinking of the problematic of work, its history, and its future prospects is overdue.

This event is sponsored by 3CT; The Center for The Study Of Race, Politics, and Culture; and The Center for The Study of Gender and Sexuality.

Persons with a disability who believe they may need assistance, please email Parker Everett at peverett@uchicago.edu