Mini-Conference at ASA 2018

Call for Abstracts and Panel Proposals 

The Roots and Branches of Interpretive Sociology: Cultural, Pragmatist, and Psychosocial Approaches 

August 10-11, 2018, Philadelphia, PA (preceding the 2018 ASA meeting) 

Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education, Center-City Philadelphia campus 

Mellon Independence Center; 701 Market St., Concourse Level 

Organized & Sponsored by: Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction Yale University’s Center for Cultural Sociology Psychosocial Scholars Group 

Co-sponsored by West Chester University and the Sociology Department of Texas State University 

with additional support from Hunter College and the Sociology Department of the CUNY Graduate Center 

Within the field of sociology, scholars have advanced various approaches to the interpretation of social life. While these approaches share a drive to uncover the deep meanings underlying human actions, events, and experiences, they often diverge in their core assumptions, methods, theoretical vocabularies, and levels of analysis. They also draw on different theoretical traditions, from the reflexive social psychol-ogy inspired by George Herbert Mead and the semiotics of Charles Sanders Peirce, to the thick descrip-tion of Clifford Geertz, the hermeneutics of Paul Ricoeur, the structural linguistics of Ferdinand de Saus-sure, the social phenomenology of Alfred Schütz, the cultural anthropology of Mary Douglas, and the psy-choanalytic thought of Sigmund Freud and Jacques Lacan, among other influences. Moreover, scholars working in these various traditions have developed different programs to grasp the rich layers of meaning behind human experiences. Some of these programs – including the strong program in cultural sociolo-gy/cultural theory, symbolic interaction/pragmatism, and psychoanalytic sociology/psychosocial theory – have made significant contributions in their own right. 

In an effort to build bridges among these traditions and advance the overall aims of interpretive sociolo-gy, we announce a two-day conference: The Roots and Branches of Interpretive Sociology: Cultural, Prag-matist, and Psychosocial Approaches. We envision this conference as providing a unique space where scholars from cultural sociology, symbolic interaction/pragmatism, and psychoanalytic sociology can come together to discuss different approaches to common themes. 

We invite submissions pertaining to a variety of topics and themes, including but not limited to: 

Proposals for paper presentations and panels are welcome. To submit a proposal for presentation, please email a title and abstract of no more than 250 words, along with your name (as it should appear in the program), institutional affiliation and contact information. To submit a proposal for a panel (fully constituted or open), please provide a brief description of the panel (the names and affiliations of partici-pants is optional). Panels that create an opportunity for dialogue among scholars taking different per-spectives will be given priority. 

Please send all proposals to the Program Committee Co-Chairs, Thomas DeGloma ( and Julie Wiest ( by March 1, 2018. Please also feel free to write with questions or comments.