Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Public SociologyFifteen Eminent Sociologists Debate Politics and the Profession in the Twenty-first Century$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Dan Clawson

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780520251373

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520251373.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 02 August 2021

Speaking Truth to the Public, and Indirectly to Power

Speaking Truth to the Public, and Indirectly to Power

Chapter:
(p.135) Speaking Truth to the Public, and Indirectly to Power
Source:
Public Sociology
Author(s):

Arthur L. Stinchcombe

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520251373.003.0009

If we do not value “the idle curiosity” of leading scholars and “stick them in ivory towers with tenure and without questions on the bottom line,” we will not have any truth to speak to power. This chapter adds one more twist to this argument. Where Burawoy and most of his critics agree that sociology does have something important to say to various publics, this chapter notes that the relevant truths of sociology are truths about the future, but such truths are elusive. And to get accepted, even the limited truths of most social processes would require an understanding of how different bureaucracies institutionalize their own views of the future. As a result, the chapter suggests, people have nothing to tell public audiences about how to free up money from Star Wars to close the race and class gaps in academic achievement test scores, even if they knew how to close them.

Keywords:   Michael Burawoy, sociological truths, bureaucracies, sociology

California Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.