While studying rural communities that face significant poverty, shocking rates of cancer, and poisoned fishing waters from industrial pollution, sociologist Arlie Hochschild learned about a disturbing money making scheme. A “waste-to-energy conversion” company wanted to build plants that burn highly toxic and noxious smelling waste—representing “locally undesirable land use.” So this corporation paid half a … Continue reading The “Least Resistant Personality Profile” and Factory Farms
My aunt Carolyn retired from a college teaching career and moved into our family’s historic farmhouse in northern Wisconsin. When the St. Paul Pioneer Press asked readers to describe “the worst jobs they ever had” for a Labor Day feature, she wrote about working at a local resort with fishing cabins, where she cleaned latrines … Continue reading Terrible Jobs (With Thoughts About Race and Remembering)
The Arlie Hochschild book that I have been pondering this summer includes passages about the Areno family, whose formerly lovely and ecologically rich land—which sustained them both with beauty and food—was turned into a poisoned wasteland by industrial pollution. They talk of their role as “rememberers,” or witnesses to how it used to be. Interestingly, … Continue reading Remembering
I guess I’m becoming less and less unique all the time, but I have personal friends who have been touched directly by a mass murder, perpetrated as a hate crime by a right-wing extremist. By "touched directly" I mean they were there being shot at; one of them tackled the shooter. In my case this … Continue reading Normalizing Domestic Terrorism
I know I’m not supposed to play the proud parent too much, especially when my daughter (Lucia Hulsether) moves in some of the same intellectual circles where I made my own career. She needs to make her own way, and is succeeding at that project very well, thank you very much. I've also said that … Continue reading The Master’s Tools and the Master’s House–“Woke” Capitalist Style
I’ve just published an article in a new American Studies journal called Quarterly Horse that features concise scholarly interventions. Here it is for you to click on. It uses the case of a pioneering radio evangelist, megachurch founder, and Pentecostal empire builder—one of few such people who was a woman in a subculture that earned … Continue reading “Women’s Equality”: Does It Include Valorizing a Woman Who Preaches to the KKK at Her Own Megachurch?
There isn’t much point in sending readers from this little blog to the American Academy of Religion’s review portal, Reading Religion—I wish I could send traffic the other way!—but I want to link to a review I recently published there, on Arlie Russell Hochschild’s Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American … Continue reading Empathy Walls: Thinking about People Who Are Oppressed But Love Trump