University at Buffalo - The State University of New York
Skip to Content
The List - One year, hundreds of stories. 2014-15 Progress Report.

Cultural sociologist Jeffrey Alexander will be Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar at UB in November

Release Date: October 30, 2014

Download High-Res Image:

Cultural sociologist Jeffrey Alexander will deliver talks including one titled, "Cultural Trauma, Social Solidarity, and Moral Responsibility: Reactions to the Holocaust and other Modern Mass Murders."

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Why do specific cultural traumas like the Holocaust, the American civil rights movement or Japan’s massacre at Nanjing elicit and enlarge the public’s sense of social responsibility and related political action over many decades?

That is one of the topics to be addressed by Yale cultural sociologist Jeffrey Alexander during his residency as University at Buffalo Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar from Nov. 17 and 18.

His residency is sponsored by the UB Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, Omicron of New York and supported by the UB Humanities Institute, UB Department of Sociology, Institute of Jewish Thought and Heritage at UB, UB Honors College and the Undergraduate Academies.

Alexander will present two free public lectures during his residency:

  • “Social Crisis and Societalization: A Cultural Sociological Approach to the Financial Crisis, Church Pedophilia, and Media Phone Hacking” for the Department of Sociology Colloquium series, Monday, Nov. 17, noon to 2 p.m., 107 Capen Hall on UB’s North Campus.
  • “Cultural Trauma, Social Solidarity, and Moral Responsibility: Reactions to the Holocaust and other Modern Mass Murders,” Monday, Nov. 17, 7-9 p.m., 20 Knox Hall on UB’s North Campus.

On Nov. 18, he will meet with undergraduates, graduate students and faculty colleagues in several informal settings.

Alexander is the Lillian Chavenson Saden Professor of Sociology at Yale University and founder and co-director of Yale’s Center for Cultural Sociology.  He also taught for 25 years at UCLA, where he received the Gold Shield Faculty Prize for research and teaching.

He has held visiting appointments as Pitt Professor of American History and Institutions, University of Cambridge; Kluge Fellow, Library of Congress; Visiting Fellow, Goldsmiths College, University of London; a guest professorship at the University of Konstanz, Konstanz, Germany, and France’s L’École des hautes études en science sociales.

He is the author or co-author of a number of important books in his field, among them “Obama Power” (2014), “The Dark Side of Modernity,” “Trauma:  A Social Theory; Performance and Power,” “The Performance of Politics: Obama’s Victory and the Democratic Struggle for Power” and “A Contemporary Introduction to Sociology:  Culture and Society in Transition.”

For further information, contact Barbara Bono, professor of English and president, UB Phi Beta Kappa, Omicron of New York via e-mail at bbono@buffalo.edu.

Media Contact Information

Patricia Donovan has retired from University Communications. To contact UB's media relations staff, call 716-645-6969 or visit our list of current university media contacts. Sorry for the inconvenience.