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The Department of Sociology host various events throughout the year. Please find below a list of our upcoming events.

LGBTQ+@Cambridge Presents...Queer Kinships

April 25th 2018, 3pm 

The Pitt Building and Pembroke College

Join us for an afternoon of talks on Queer Kinships from Sarah Franklin, Robert Pralat and Marcin Smietana. Coffee will be served at 3pm, and the talks will start at 3:30. Afterwards there will be a drinks reception, and you are warmly welcome to join us for a production of Scene, a play by Cambridge's Lola Olufemi and Martha Krish which is currently playing at Camden People's Theatre in London. All are welcome, feel free to share the poster. Please note, places at the play are free but limited, so it will be first come first served. RSVP to:

Fear and Loathing in Modern Warfare

Tuesday 1 May, 2-4 pm

Mill Lane Lecture Room 3

Come and hear Professor Michael Mann discuss issues about modern warfare.


Confrontation? Doing Feminist and Anti-Racist Work in Institutions, A Panel Discussion

May 1st 2018, 4-6pm
Lecture Theatre 1 (Room 1), Mill Lane Lecture Theatres.
How can we confront institutions about their role in perpetuating violence and work to make institutions more open and inclusive spaces? 

In this panel we explore some of the paradoxes and difficulties of doing feminist and anti-racist work within institutions. Even when institutions claim to be committed to equality they are often deeply unequal and hierarchical spaces. A feminist and anti-racist project is to transform the institutions in which we work. The aim of transforming institutions is still however an institutional project: we often have to work through the structures we seek to dismantle. When our political work is resourced or supported by an institution does it become more difficult to confront the institution? Does following procedures or working in house constrain the kinds of work we can do? If for strategic reasons we try to avoid confrontation what else are we avoiding? And how and why are some of us perceived as being confrontational however we are doing the work?

The panel will be a chance to talk from as well as about our experiences of doing feminist and anti-racist work. We will consider who does (and does not) do the work of trying to transform institutions and how these distributions of labour can reproduce inequalities. We will discuss the costs of doing (and not doing) this labour and reflect on how institutions can exhaust us and wear us out. The panel will open up a discussion of how we can confront problems of institutional racism, institutional sexism (including sexual harassment and sexual misconduct) as well as institutional bullying. 

Speakers include:
Sara Ahmed
Monica Moreno Figueroa
Lola Olufemi
Tiffany Page
Leila Whitley

This is a launch event for a new feminist counter-institutional initiative FFF
FFF Fighting For Feminism
FFF When feminism is what we stand for

White Bound: Nationalists, Antiracists, and the Shared Meanings of Race

May 14, 2018, 5pm

Room 1 Mill Lane Lecture Rooms

Discussions of race are inevitably fraught with tension, both in opinion and positioning. Too frequently, debates are framed as clear points of opposition—us versus them. And when considering white racial identity, a split between progressive movements and a neoconservative backlash is all too frequently assumed. Taken at face value, it would seem that whites are splintering into antagonistic groups, with differing worldviews, values, and ideological stances.

White Bound investigates these dividing lines, questioning the very notion of a fracturing whiteness, and in so doing offers a unique view of white racial identity.

Dr. Matthew Hughey (Associate Professor, University of Connecticut) spent over a year attending the meetings, reading the literature, and interviewing members of two white organizations—a white nationalist group and a white antiracist group. Though he found immediate political differences, he observed surprising similarities related to how both groups make meaning of race and whiteness. His talk will examine these similarities to illuminate not just the many ways of being white, but how these actors make meaning of whiteness in ways that collectively reproduce both white identity and, ultimately, white supremacy.

Remaking Reproduction: The Global Politics of Reproductive Technologies

June 27-29th 2018

Murray Edwards College, Cambridge

 The rapid global growth of the fertility industry is one of the most significant contexts of contemporary social change, and these changes are the subject of an increasing amount of social research. This conference is designed both to consolidate core themes in the social study of reproductive technologies and to showcase new research, especially by early career scholars and doctoral students. Our core themes are designed to bring together old and new approaches to the study of reproduction, technology and society at a time when the politics of reproduction globally are changing rapidly. 

Throughout the conference, we will be running concurrent panels where you will have a chance to respond to the conference themes and share your research on reproduction. The paper panels will be divided across six themed streams: Race, Nation and Reproduction; Reproductive Bodies and Cultures; Changing In/Fertilities; Making New Biologies; Reproductive Futures; and Mediated Reproduction. Please consider which stream(s) your paper might fit best with when submitting your abstract.

For information about our Outreach events, please click here.

To inform us of your upcoming event, please click here.


Past events


Post-Truth Teach-Out! Conference

15th - 17th March 2018

The post-truth phenomenon, ‘relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief,’ as defined by Oxford Dictionaries, has been the subject of much instant commentary – though little academic analysis. This series of teach-out events and conference are an opportunity to consolidate and advance our understanding of the post-truth phenomenon through collaborative activities and interdisciplinary conversation.

For more information about the conference, click here.

The Technology and New Media Research Cluster

Our next session will be on Friday 9th March, 12-1.30 pm in Room G of 17 Mill Lane with Dr Jana Bacevic 'On the Land of Dark Ontology'. All are welcome to attend.

Queries can be directed to Amarpreet Kaur (

CUQM Annual Lecture 2018

This year the Cambridge Undergraduate Quantitative Methods Centre is delighted to welcome Branwen Jeffreys (BBC Education Editor) to give the CUQM Annual Lecture 2018, on “Data & A Journalist’s Sense of Smell”.

The Annual Lecture will be taking place in Bateman Auditorium, Gonville & Caius College. Thursday 1 March, 17:00-18:30, followed by a Wine Reception

Science as Affective, Embodied and Material Relations

Mianna Meskus

21st February 2018 | 12:30 - 2pm

Seminar Room, Department of Sociology, Free School Lane, Cambridge

This talk addresses “scientific craftwork” in the use of human biological material for the benefit of biomedicine, innovation and patients’ health. A revolutionary cellular reprogramming technique has made it possible to turn human skin and blood cells into pluripotent stem cells, thus providing an unprecedented opportunity to study the pathophysiology of diseases, understand human developmental biology, and generate new therapies. Using the so called iPS cell technology as a point of entry, I examine how the foundations of biomedical knowledge production lie in embodied skill and affective engagement with cellular research material. Combining relational materialism and pragmatist philosophy of experience, I develop the idea of an instrumentality-care continuum as a core dynamic of biomedical craft, involving both researchers and patients as tissue donors. This continuum opens up a novel perspective to the commercialization and industrial-scale appropriation of human biology, and thereby to the future of ethical biomedical research.

Digital Fakery and its Consequences

Dr Ella McPherson, Cambridge Sociology Department.

A Postcolonial Rethinking of the State and Nation: From Comparative to Connected Sociologies

Professor Gurminder Bhambra, University of Essex.