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Toward a Sociology of the Trace

2010

Herman Gray and Macarena Gómez-Barris, editors

Toward a Sociology of the Trace

Questions national identity by investigating the creation of memory and meaning

Using culture as an entry point, the essays in this volume identify and challenge sites where the representational dimension of social life produces national identity through scripts of belonging, or traces. The contributors utilize empirically based studies of social policy, political economy, and social institutions to offer a new way of looking at the creation of meaning, representation, and memory.

Using culture as an entry point, and informed by the work of contemporary social theorists, the essays in this volume identify and challenge sites where the representational dimension of social life produces national identity through scripts of belonging, or traces.

The contributors utilize empirically based studies of social policy, political economy, and social institutions to offer a new way of looking at the creation of meaning, representation, and memory. They scrutinize subjects such as narratives in the U.S. coal industry’s change from digging mines to removing mountaintops; war-related redress policies in post–World War II Japan; views of masculinity linked to tequila, Pancho Villa, and the Mexican Revolution; and the politics of subjectivity in 1970s political violence in Thailand.

Contributors: Sarah Banet-Weiser, U of Southern California; Barbara A. Barnes, U of California, Berkeley; Marie Sarita Gaytán; Avery F. Gordon, U of California, Santa Barbara; Tanya McNeill, U of California, Santa Cruz; Sudarat Musikawong, Willamette U; Akiko Naono, U of Kyushu; Rebecca R. Scott, U of Missouri.

Toward a Sociology of the Trace

Herman Gray is professor of sociology and communication at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Macarena Gómez-Barris is associate professor of sociology and American studies and ethnicity at the University of Southern California.

Toward a Sociology of the Trace

Contents

Prologue: Traces in the Social World
Macarena Gómez-Barris and Herman Gray

1. Toward a Sociology of the Trace
Macarena Gómez-Barris and Herman Gray

Part I. Cartographies of Belonging
2. The Prisoner’s Curse
Avery F. Gordon
3. A Nation of Families: The Codification and (Be)longings of Heteropatriarchy
Tanya McNeill
4. Culture, Masculinity, and the Time after Race
Herman Gray
5. Producing Sacrificial Subjects for the Nation: Japan’s War-related Redress Policy and the Endurance Doctrine
Akiko Naono

Part II. Spectacles of Consumption
6. Coal Heritage/Coal History: Progress, Tourism, and Mountaintop Removal
Rebecca R. Scott
7. Ecoadventures in the American West: Innocence, Conflict, and Nation Making in Emptied Landscapes
Barbara A. Barnes

Part III. Managing and Reconciling Memory
8. Drinking the Nation and Making Masculinity: Tequila, the Revolution, and Mexican Identity
Marie Sarita Gaytán
9. Reinscribing Memory through the Other 9/11
Macarena Gómez-Barris
10. Between Celebration and Mourning: Political Violence in Thailand in the 1970s
Sudarat Musikawong

Afterword: Traces in Social Worlds
Sarah Banet-Weiser

Contributors

Index