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A Practical Handbook for Public Service Organisations
Authors: Sarah Morton and Ailsa Cook

Why is it hard to know if you are making a difference in public services? What can you do about it?

Public services throughout the world face the challenge of tackling complex issues where multiple factors influence change. This book sets out practical and theoretically robust, tried and tested approaches to understanding and tracking change that any organisation can use to ensure it makes a difference to the people it cares about.

With case studies from health, community, research, international development and social care, this book shows that with the right tools and techniques, public services can track their contribution to social change and become more efficient and effective.

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Towards a Convivial Society
Author: Frank Adloff

At the heart of capitalism lies the idea of “homo economicus”: an ever-rational human being motivated by self-interest which arguably leads societies to economic prosperity.

Drawing on French sociologist Marcel Mauss’ influential theory of “the gift”, Frank Adloff shatters this fallacy to show mutual trust is the only glue that holds societies together; people are giving beings and they can cooperate for the benefit of all when the logic of all when the logic of maximizing personal gain in capitalism is broken.

Acknowledging the role of women, nature and workers in the Global South in transforming society, this book proposes a politics of conviviality, (from Latin con-vivere: living together), for global and environmental justice as an alternative to the pursuit of profit, growth and consumption.

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The Case of Colorblindness

This book offers a unique perspective on contemporary France by focusing on racial diversity, race and racism as central features of French society and identity.

The author critically reviews the contentious public policies and significant issues, including the 2005 French riots and the policies regarding the Islamic veil, revealing how color-blind racism plays a role in the persistence of racial inequality for French racial minorities.

Drawing from American sociological frameworks, this outstanding study presents a new way of thinking in the study of racial identity politics in today’s France.

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Applying Feminist Care Ethics to Research Practice

What are the implications of caring about the things we research? How does that affect how we research, who we research with and what we do with our results? Proposing what Tronto has called a ‘paradigm shift’ in research thinking, this book invites researchers across disciplines and fields of study to do research that thinks and acts with care.

The authors draw on their own and others’ experiences of researching, the troubles they encounter and the opportunities generated when research is approached as a caring practice. Care ethics provides a guide from starting out, designing and conducting projects, to thinking about research legacies. It offers a way in which research can help repair harms and promote justice.

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An Introduction to Prefigurative Politics
Editor: Lara Monticelli

The gloomy prospect of climate change and ecosystems’ collapse calls for an urgent rethinking of all aspects of our life: how we work, produce, eat, spend, take care of each other, relate to nature, and organize our societies.

Prefigurative initiatives are attracting a growing amount of attention from scholars and activists precisely because they are envisioning alternative futures by embodying radically different ways of living in the present.

Thanks to the contribution of leading researchers, ‘The Future is Now’ represents the go-to book for anyone seeking a comprehensive, state-of-the-art, and thought-provoking introduction to the thriving field of prefigurative politics.

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A Perspective from the Global South

The idea of public sociology, as introduced by Michael Burawoy, was inspired by the sociological practice in South Africa known as ‘critical engagement’. This volume explores the evolution of critical engagement before and after Burawoy’s visit to South Africa in the 1990s and offers a Southern critique of his model of public sociology.

Involving four generations of researchers from the Global South, the authors provide a multifaceted exploration of the formation of new knowledge through research practices of co-production.

Tracing the historical development of ‘critical engagement’ from a Global South perspective, the book deftly weaves a bridge between the debates on public sociology and decolonial frameworks.

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Critical Theory for Contemporary Times

This fresh appraisal of philosopher Herbert Marcuse’s work foregrounds the geographical aspects of one of the leading social and political theorists of the 20th century.

Margath A. Walker considers how Marcusean philosophies might challenge the way we think about space and politics and create new sensibilities. Applying them to contemporary geopolitics, digital infrastructure and issues like resistance and immigration, the book shows how social change has been stifled, and how Marcuse’s philosophies could provide the tools to overturn the status quo.

She demonstrates Marcuse’s relevance to individuals and society, and finds this important theorist of opposition can point the way to resisting oppressive forces within contemporary capitalism.

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Rethinking Global Ethics

A perennial debate in the field of global ethics revolves around the possibility of a universalist ethics, as well as arguments over the nature, and significance, of difference for moral deliberation. Decolonial literature, in particular, increasingly signifies a pluriverse, one with radical ontological and epistemological differences.

This book examines the concept of the pluriverse alongside global ethics and the ethics of care in order to contemplate new ethical horizons for engaging across difference. Offering a challenge to the current state of the field, this book argues for a rethinking of global ethics as it has been conceived thus far.

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Staying Together at the End of the World
Author: David W. Hill

Thinking about climate change can create a paralyzing sense of hopelessness. But what about the idea of a planetary exodus? Are high tech solutions like colonizing other planets just another distraction from taking real action?

This radical book unsettles how we think about taking responsibility for environmental catastrophe.

Going beyond both hopelessness and false hope in his development of a ‘sociology of the very worst’, Hill debunks the idea of a society that centres human beings and calls for us to take responsibility for sustaining a coexistence of animals, plants and minerals bound by one planet.

We would then find the centre of our moral gravity here together on earth.

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Making Sense of Religious Lives

This edited collection harnesses a diversity of interpretivist perspectives to provide a panoramic view of the production, experiences, contexts, and meanings of religion.

Scholars from the US, South Asia and Europe explore religious phenomena using ethnographic, comparative historical, psychosocial, and critical theoretical approaches. Each chapter addresses foundational themes in the study of religion – from identity, discourse and power to ritual, emotion, and embodiment. Authors examine dynamic intersections of race, gender, history, and the present within the religious traditions of Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Buddhism, as well as among the non-religious.

Cutting boldly across religious traditions and paradigms, the book investigates areas of harmony and contradiction across different interpretive lenses to achieve a richer understanding of the meanings of religion.

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