Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Public Sociology in National Geographic?

I've recently been thinking about venues through which sociologists could get our insights out into interesting, public venues that highlight good science. National Geographic (N.G. from now on) seems like it would be an excellent candidate.

For a long time, I have immensely enjoyed reading about anthropological studies in N.G. More recently, N.G. published an article in March (2007) titled "Orlando Beyond Disney: The Theme-Parking, Megachurching, Franchising, Exurbing, McMansioning of America." The title of this piece alone should send shivers up any respecting sociologist's spine - they used some of our terms!!! More concretely, this article discusses sociological concepts in a very straight-forward, commonsensical way, without using a lot of mumbo jumbo or reams of statistics with effects that only those versed in logistic regression can read.

I really encourage you all to read it (especially those of you who have been to Orlando, or any other location with rampant suburban sprawl - think Atlanta, Phoenix, Los Angeles, etc...). Then I'd love to hear your thoughts on using N.G. as a venue for our work. Perhaps I should suggest a section at the ASA next year to discuss this topic. Hm....

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