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Frontiers in Sociology
Number of Followers: 2  

  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
ISSN (Online) 2297-7775
Published by Frontiers Media Homepage  [96 journals]
  • The relationship between social life and emotions. Adam Ferguson and

    • Authors: Emiliano Bevilacqua
      Abstract: Adam Ferguson has a leading position among those who have developed a sociological interpretation of modernity that dismiss metaphysics without following the echoes of rationalism. Ferguson outlines a vision of social life that correlates the analysis of individual behavior to the study of social context and institutions. Consistently with this approach, the Scottish scholar emphasizes the multidimensionality of human beings without forgetting the non-rational features of social behavior. This essay aims to discuss Ferguson's thought with a special attention to the importance of the emotions in social life, so as to enhance the contribution of classical sociology to the analysis of the emotionality. Ferguson, in fact, argues that emotions have a leading role in shaping the behaviors and values of individuals. Developed in the context of Scottish Enlightenment, Ferguson's sociology shows how the study of modern society can be reconciled with a reasonable as well as emotional approach to social life.
      PubDate: 2023-06-05T00:00:00Z
  • Changing gender norms around female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C): a
           key role for social work in the Global North

    • Authors: Michela Villani
      Abstract: “Female genital mutilation/cutting” (FGM/C) refers to procedures that involve altering the external female genitalia with the aim of reinforcing gendered body norms. The literature has consistently shown that, like various forms of discrimination, the practice is rooted in systems of gender inequality. As a result, FGM/C has increasingly come to be understood in terms of social norms that are by no means fixed. And yet, in the Global North, interventions remain primarily medical in nature, with clitoral reconstruction having emerged as a common means of dealing with related sexual issues. And although treatments can vary greatly depending on the hospitals and physicians involved, sexuality tends to be considered from a gynecological perspective, even when multidisciplinary care is offered. By contrast, gender norms and other socio-cultural factors receive little attention. In addition to highlighting three critical shortcomings in current responses to FGM/C, this literature review also describes how social work can play a key role in overcoming the associated barriers by (1) adopting a holistic approach to sex education, one capable of addressing those aspects of sexuality that lie beyond the scope of a medical consultation; (2) supporting family-based discussions on matters of sexuality; and (3) promoting gender equality, especially among younger generations.
      PubDate: 2023-06-02T00:00:00Z
  • What is ethnographic about digital ethnography' A sociological

    • Authors: Peter Forberg, Kristen Schilt
      Abstract: When COVID-19 health guidelines vastly restricted or shut down in-person ethnographic research in 2020, many researchers pivoted to forms of online qualitative research using platforms such as WeChat, Twitter, and Discord. This growing body of qualitative internet research in sociology is often encapsulated under the umbrella term “digital ethnography.” But the question of what makes digital qualitative research ethnographic remains open. In this article, we posit that digital ethnographic research necessitates a negotiation of the ethnographer's self-presentation and co-presence within the field that other forms of qualitative research, such as content or discourse analysis, do not require to satisfy their epistemological stance. To make our case, we provide a brief overview of digital research in sociology and related disciplines. Then, we draw upon our experiences conducting ethnographies in digital communities and in-person communities (what we call here, “analog ethnography”) to explore how decisions about self-presentation and co-presence facilitate or block the generation of meaningful ethnographic data. We think through pertinent questions such as: Does the lower barrier for anonymity online justify disguised research' Does anonymity generate thicker data' How should digital ethnographers participate in research environments' What are the possible repercussions of digital participation' We argue that digital and analog ethnographies share a common epistemology that is distinct from non-participatory forms of qualitative digital research—namely the need for the researcher to relationally gather data from the field site over an extended period of time.
      PubDate: 2023-06-02T00:00:00Z
  • The African Gender and Development Index: an engendered and culturally
           sensitive statistical tool

    • Authors: Jacques Charmes, Saskia E. Wieringa, Thokozile Ruzvidzo, Gonzaque Rosalie
      Abstract: In 2004 the African Union adopted an innovative gender index, the Afriacn Gender and Development Index (AGDI). It is composed of the quantitative Gender Status Index (GSI) and the qualitative African Women's Progress Scorecard (AWPS). The tool is built on the use of national data collected by a national team of specialists. Since the beginning three cycles of implementation have occurred. After the last cycle the AGDI was revised. In this article the authors assess the implementation of the AGDI, against the background of other gender indices, and discuss the latest revisions.
      PubDate: 2023-06-01T00:00:00Z
  • Editorial: Hopelessness and suicide among children and adolescents in low
           and middle income countries

    • Authors: Godfrey Zari Rukundo, Raphael Emeka Ogbolu, James Mugisha
      PubDate: 2023-06-01T00:00:00Z
  • Failed in aging' Queering in living with dementia

    • Authors: Valerie Keller
      Abstract: This article explored the ways in which living with dementia brings potentials to queer the concept of “successful aging” and associated notions of being human. Regarding the progressive development of dementia, it can be assumed that people affected, no matter how hard they try, will sooner or later fail to age successfully. They increasingly become a symbol of what is called the “fourth age” and are framed as an essentialized other. Based on statements of people with dementia, it will be examined to what extent the position on the outside enables people affected to abandon societal guiding ideals and undermine hegemonic-dominant notions of aging. It is shown how they develop life-affirming ways of being-in-the-world that run counter to the idea of the rational, autonomous, consistent, active, productive, and healthy human beings.
      PubDate: 2023-05-30T00:00:00Z
  • The several faces of the medicalization of birth. Italy and its

    • Authors: Elena Spina
      Abstract: BackgroundMedical-scientific advances in maternal care gradually improved the health of mothers and new-borns. However, this has contributed to increasing levels of medicalization, defined as the overuse of medical interventions even in low-risk pregnancies and childbirths. In Italy pregnancy and birth still appear to be rather medicalized than in the rest of Europe. Moreover, the uneven distribution of these practice over the territory appears to be evident. The purpose of this article is to both highlight and explain the Italian peculiarity in terms of high medicalization of childbirth and its territorial variability.Theoretical frameworkThe extensive literature on medicalization of childbirth was systematized by some scholars who use childbirth as a case study to distinguish four meanings of medicalization, by classifying them into two generations of theories. Alongside this literature several studies attempted to interpret differences in maternity model of care showing the important role played by path dependence.ResultsIn the European scenario, Italy stands out for its high percentage of cesarean sections, but also for its excessive recourse to antenatal visits during pregnancy and the application of interventions during labor and vaginal births. Going into regional detail, however, Italian situation appears rather uneven: relevant differences emerge in relation to medicalization of both pregnancy and birth.DiscussionThe article explores the possibility that areas whit different sociocultural, economic, political and institutional background may have introjected different meanings of medicalization, thus reproducing different maternity models of care. In fact, the simultaneous presence, in Italy, of four different meanings of medicalization seems to be rooted. Even with some similar traits, different conditions and situations emerge in different geographical areas, leading to the prevalence of one meaning rather than another and resulting on different outcomes in terms of medicalization.ConclusionThe data presented in this article seem to deny the existence of a national maternity model of care and. On the contrary, they confirm the idea that medicalization is not necessarily linked to the different health conditions of mothers in different geographical areas and that a path dependent variable is able to explain it.
      PubDate: 2023-05-30T00:00:00Z
  • Corrigendum: Emerging work environments in the pandemic era: a gendered
           approach to work-life balance programs

    • Authors: B. Sreya, Ayyagari Lakshmana Rao, G. Ramakrishnan, Nikhil Kulshretha
      PubDate: 2023-05-30T00:00:00Z
  • Not just political parties: Robert Michels as a critic of mainstream

    • Authors: Emanuela Susca
      Abstract: Best known for his contribution to elite theory through the formulation of the principle of oligarchy, Robert Michels pursued a critique of economic reductionism for decades. In this paper, I examine some significant passages from Michels' writings to clarify the significance of his criticism of the dominant economics of his time. This provides an overview of an author partly conditioned by his adherence to Italian fascism but still able to distance himself progressively from productivist ideology while anticipating current lines of research focusing on the relationship between the market and society, such as civil economy. Moreover, by investigating how goods may provide happiness, Michels expressed a sophisticated and contemporary view of consumption, already bringing into focus the logic of distinction that Pierre Bourdieu examined in the second half of the twentieth century. By also attempting to do all this in an interdisciplinary way, Michels represents a scholar whom the social sciences and sociology should rediscover in the face of the challenges of the twenty-first century.
      PubDate: 2023-05-26T00:00:00Z
  • Dynamic work trajectories and their interplay with family over the life

    • Authors: Xiaowen Han, Jeylan T. Mortimer
      Abstract: This review examines major bodies of literature, interrelated but usually considered separately, focused on work trajectories and their intersections with family dynamics through the life course. It begins with a consideration of the life course paradigm, which draws attention to the temporal dimensions of human lives, and recently developed analytic techniques that are well-suited to empirical investigation of life course transitions and trajectories over time. The review proceeds to examine empirical research on work career mobility (including both inter- and intra-generational mobility) measured as either trajectories of continuous outcomes or sequences of categorical outcomes, and their long-term consequences for socioeconomic attainment. Work-family trajectories are then addressed, focusing on the impacts of family on work, notably expressed in the motherhood wage penalty, and how family structure and processes affect long-term labor market outcomes. Research documents considerable heterogeneity in work-family dynamics over the life course across social groups with unequal resources. The review concludes with an assessment of the interplay of work and family trajectories studied longitudinally and makes recommendations for future research. It is argued that while extant studies of the work-family interface are compatible with, and sometimes deliberately reflect, a life course perspective, these bodies of research would benefit from more fully incorporating the life course principles of “agency” and “time and place”.
      PubDate: 2023-05-26T00:00:00Z
  • Women and cities. The conquest of urban space

    • Authors: Letizia Carrera, Marina Castellaneta
      Abstract: In the city of the Nineteenth-century, transformed by the values of the French revolution and by the modernity, women did not have yet full citizenship. The public space was still strongly a male space and women, still with a weak public subjectivity, remained the object of the male gaze. Women have begun a process of conquering urban space by claiming their right to the city, through their physical presence in the city itself. Through physical space, women have claimed their full symbolic citizenship. The project of an inclusive city takes shape from the public demands of women who, as Annie Hockshild wrote, gave birth to the most important revolution of the 20th century. However it is a stalled revolution that still today requires a legislative protection for the project of the substantial equality, which is still not fully achieved. In addition to the various national legislations, international legislation also recognizes the central objective of guaranteeing women's right to full citizenship. In the second part of the article, the focus is precisely on the normative content of this legislation and in particular on the objectives of the UN Agenda 2030.
      PubDate: 2023-05-25T00:00:00Z
  • Transformative community projects in East Germany's rural spaces:
           exploring more sustainable forms of learning, working, and living

    • Authors: Joachim Broecher, Janet F. Painter
      Abstract: Increasingly people experience alienation in educational institutions, in work life, and fragmentation in their personal life. This study explores more self-determined, healthy, and sustainable forms of working, learning, and living through a dynamic process that began in 2020 with the purchase of an old homestead in Eastern Germany. Through the remodeling of the buildings and grounds, the first social and cultural references emerged. Along with practical uses, the farm project sees itself as a future workshop or think tank. The resulting consideration includes ideas of compulsory schooling woven into a self-designed format and the introduction of an unconditional basic income. These components could lead to thousands of such projects in rural and urban areas. Drawing from communitarianism, the belief is that an active civil society must take on social, economic, and educational responsibilities and offer children and young people improved conditions in which to grow up. Theory development on the individual components exists, such as entrepreneurship, transformation, community-building, basic income, or self-directed learning but not on the interaction of these variables in the overall context. We tentatively call this integrated design a transformative community project.
      PubDate: 2023-05-24T00:00:00Z
  • Fugitivity and marronage and the study of sex work

    • Authors: Julia O'Connell Davidson
      Abstract: Campaigns against female prostitution used slavery as a rhetorical device to characterize the condition of sex workers, and sex work features prominently in contemporary campaigns against “modern slavery”. In both types of campaigning, “the slave” is worked as a symbolic device to represent the abject condition of human beings objectified, controlled by violence or its threat, and stripped of agency and choice. The assumptions and generalizations about prostitution that inform this vision have been extensively critiqued. However, less attention has been paid to the fact that the analogy also rests on a very particular reading of “the slave” and a very partial appeal to histories of Atlantic World slavery. Histories of enslaved people's resistance and flight are entirely overlooked. The latter has recently prompted interest in fugitivity and marronage as analytic concepts, albeit concepts that are defined and deployed in different ways by different scholars and activists. This review asks whether and how they might potentially have theoretical purchase with regard to the contemporary experience (both positive and negative) of sex workers.
      PubDate: 2023-05-19T00:00:00Z
  • The economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on ethnic minorities in
           Manchester: lessons from the early stage of the pandemic

    • Authors: Arkadiusz Wiśniowski, Ruth Allen, Andrea Aparicio-Castro, Wendy Olsen, Maydul Islam
      Abstract: This review summarizes the economic impacts of the pandemic on ethnic minorities, focusing on the city of Manchester. It utilizes multiple reporting sources to explore various dimensions of the economic shock in the UK, linking this to studies of pre-COVID-19 economic and ethnic composition in Manchester and in the combined authority area of Greater Manchester. We then make inferences about the pandemic's short-term impact specific to the city region. Greater Manchester has seen some of the highest rates of COVID-19 and as a result faced particularly stringent “lockdown” regulations. Manchester is the sixth most deprived Local Authority in England, according to 2019 English Indices of Multiple Deprivation. As a consequence, many neighborhoods in the city were always going to be less resilient to the economic shock caused by the pandemic compared with other, less-deprived, areas. Particular challenges for Manchester include the high rates of poor health, low-paid work, low qualifications, poor housing conditions and overcrowding. Ethnic minority groups also faced disparities long before the onset of the pandemic. Within the UK, ethnic minorities were found to be most disadvantaged in terms of employment and housing–particularly in large urban areas containing traditional settlement areas for ethnic minorities. Further, all Black, Asian, and Minority ethnic (BAME) groups in Greater Manchester were less likely to be employed pre-pandemic compared with White people. For example, people of Pakistani and Bangladeshi ethnic backgrounds, especially women, have the lowest levels of employment in Greater Manchester. Finally, unprecedented cuts to public spending as a result of austerity have also disproportionately affected women of an ethnic minority background alongside disabled people, the young and those with no or low-level qualifications. This environment has created and sustained a multiplicative disadvantage for Manchester's ethnic minority residents through the course of the COVID-19 pandemic.
      PubDate: 2023-05-19T00:00:00Z
  • Paving a pathway for large-scale utilization of genomics in precision
           medicine and population health

    • Authors: Nephi A. Walton, G. Bryce Christensen
      Abstract: Having worked with two large population sequencing initiatives, the separation between the potential for genomics in precision medicine and the current reality have become clear. To realize this potential requires workflows, policies, and technical architectures that are foreign to most healthcare systems. Many historical processes and regulatory barriers currently impede our progress. The future of precision medicine includes genomic data being widely available at the point of care with systems in place to manage its efficient utilization. To achieve such vision requires substantial changes in billing, reimbursement, and reporting as well as the development of new systemic and technical architectures within the healthcare system. Clinical geneticist roles will evolve into managing precision health frameworks and genetic counselors will serve crucial roles in both leading and supporting precision medicine through the implementation and maintenance of precision medicine architectures. Our current path has many obstacles that hold us back, leaving preventable deaths in the wake. Reengineering our healthcare systems to support genomics can have a major impact on patient outcomes and allow us to realize the long-sought promises of precision medicine.
      PubDate: 2023-05-19T00:00:00Z
  • Measuring digital capital in Italy|Introduction|Method|Results

    • Authors: Felice Addeo, Valentina D'Auria, Angela Delli Paoli, Gabriella Punziano, Massimo Ragnedda, Maria Laura Ruiu
      Abstract: IntroductionThis paper aims to theoretically and empirically investigate the concept of digital capital in the Italian context. Digital Capital can be conceived as independent individual capital whose lack within a population can be a cause of digital inequality. Our paper draws from recent works that have measured the Digital Capital as a combination of digital access and digital competences, and have tested this operational definition through an online survey on a UK sample. The results of such research proved the construct validity of the operational definition, thus showing that Digital Capital could be empirically measured. However, a measurement model needs to be tested and validated over time and in different socio-cultural contexts in order to be refined and strengthened, and eventually disseminated on a large scale.MethodThis is the reason why this paper will show the results of a funded research project (named DigiCapItaly) carried out to test the validity of the Digital Capital measure in a different country, i.e., Italy. The data were collected with an online survey using a representative sample (by age, gender and geographical area) of individuals living in Italy aged 18 years or more. The creation of a composite index to measure Digital Capital followed a two-stage Principal Component Analysis approach.ResultsFirst, the paper provides a methodological framework for facing challenges and pitfalls in operationalizing and assessing a complex concept in social research. Secondly, results show that Digital Capital operational definition works in Italy as well as in the UK, thus legitimizing its recognition as an independent capital.
      PubDate: 2023-05-19T00:00:00Z
  • Sheltering difference: (un)doing the migrant/volunteer divide through
           sheltering practices in Mexico and the Netherlands

    • Authors: Cesar E. Merlín-Escorza, Joris Schapendonk, Tine Davids
      Abstract: While acknowledging the important role of shelter organizations in protecting migrant rights, recent debates point to the thin line between care and control practices within shelters. This study seeks to deepen this observation by approaching shelters as spaces defined by a constant inward/outward mobility of people. From this starting point, we use the de-migranticization framework to understand and question the normalization of difference that divides migrant people (being reproduced as the typical guest) from international volunteers (being reproduced as the typical host) through sheltering practices in two rather different geopolitical contexts (Mexico and the Netherlands). We use our ethnographic insights to not only illustrate how difference is reproduced but also to analyze the practices that seek to transgress and undo these divides. We argue that highlighting the conviviality and interconnectedness between these differentiated actors in the broader context of cross-border mobility is of vital importance to question and overcome the coloniality of contemporary border regimes. However, we do not imply that these aspects have the potential to completely undo difference, as they are a constant struggle embedded in the relational practices of the people composing such a divide.
      PubDate: 2023-05-18T00:00:00Z
  • “There isn't anybody else like me around here”: the insider-outsider
           status of LGBT residents in housing with care schemes for older people

    • Authors: Paul Willis, Brian Beach, Jillian Powell, Alex Vickery, Alisa Cameron, Randall Smith
      Abstract: The intersections between aging, social minority status and housing needs in later life is a neglected area of sociological exploration, even more so for older people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT). Recent sociological findings indicate that older LGBT people in housing schemes stress the importance of bonding social capital and look to other people in their social networks who reflect their identities and experiences as sources of support. In this paper, we examine the insider-outsider status occupied by older LGBT residents living in housing schemes that provide some form of care and support, for example extra care and independent living schemes. We present qualitative findings generated from a mixed-methods study of social inclusion practices in housing with care in England and Wales (UK) (2019-22). In this study 15 LGBT residents participated in semi-structured interviews (55–79 years of age) across a total of 31 interviews. Through a queer gerontological lens we examine how older LGBT people are socially situated within mainstream housing schemes in which they experience partial visibility while also encountering exclusionary pressures that locate them as “the other.” This insider-outsider status undermines the premise of housing with care schemes to provide safe, secure spaces to grow old. We discuss three core themes: (1) how LGBT residents navigate their outsider status in scheme life and how the intersection of disability and minority status amplifies this social location; (2) the exclusionary practices exercised by other residents that reinforce boundaries of sexual and gender normalcy; and, (3) the heightened importance of maintaining external social connections among LGBT residents. We conclude by introducing an alternative notion of marginal aging and expanding on the implications for housing providers, reflecting on their responsibilities for promoting and maintaining queer-friendly environments.
      PubDate: 2023-05-18T00:00:00Z
  • Digital ethnography: ethics through the case of

    • Authors: Michelle Cera
      Abstract: IntroductionDigital ethnography is a relatively new practice with unclear standards and guidelines. As a result, the ethics of the practice remain unclear. Scholarly debates have emerged surrounding the decision of many researchers and institutional review boards to treat social media data as public. Concerns have also been raised about how informed consent can be adapted to online fieldwork. How does a researcher make their presence known when they are not visible in the traditional sense' Which online interactions should be considered public, and which are private' How can we protect the anonymity of social media users'MethodsThis article leverages original digital ethnographic research on QAnon social media spaces to suggest ethical guidelines for digital ethnographic practices.DiscussionIt begins with a description of the research, followed by discussions of the public-private binary, lurking, data reconstruction, and institutional review boards.ResultsThis article advocates for rethinking the public-private binary as it applies to the digital world, ameliorating the “lurker” concern by making the presence of the researcher known in appropriate spaces, and maintaining the integrity of the data by avoiding reconstruction. Although many digital ethnographers have chosen to reconstruct or paraphrase online data to protect privacy, this practice comes with its own ethical dilemmas. The ethical dilemmas and guidance discussed in this article are critical lessons for digital and in-person ethnographers alike.
      PubDate: 2023-05-18T00:00:00Z
  • Comparative study of quality of life 9 months post-COVID-19 infection with
           SARS-CoV-2 of varying degrees of severity: impact of hospitalization vs.
           outpatient treatment|Purpose|Methods|Results|Conclusion

    • Authors: Olga Maslova, Tatiana Vladimirova, Arseny Videnin, Saikat Gochhait, Vasily Pyatin
      Abstract: PurposeThis experimental study was conducted during the post-COVID-19 period to investigate the relationship between the quality of life 9 months after and the severity of the SARS-CoV-2 infection in two scenarios: hospitalization (with/without medical oxygen) and outpatient treatment.MethodsWe employed the EQ-5D-5L Quality of Life tests and the PSQI as a survey to evaluate respondents' quality of life 9 months after a previous SARS-CoV-2 infection of varying severity.ResultsWe identified a clear difference in the quality of life of respondents, as measured on the 100-point scale of the EQ-5D-5L test, which was significantly lower 9 months after a previous SARS-CoV-2 infection for Group 1 (n = 14), respondents who had received medical attention for SARS-CoV-2 infection in a hospital with oxygen treatment, compared to those with the SARS-CoV-2 infection who were treated without oxygen treatment (Group 2) (n = 12) and those who were treated on an outpatient basis (Group 3) (n = 13) (H = 7.08 p = 0.029). There were no intergroup differences in quality of life indicators between hospitalized patients (Group 2) and groups 1 and 3. PSQI survey results showed that “mobility,” “self-care,” “daily activities,” “pain/discomfort,” and “anxiety/ depression” did not differ significantly between the groups, indicating that these factors were not associated with the severity of the SARS-CoV-2 infection. On the contrary, the respondents demonstrated significant inter-group differences (H = 7.51 p = 0.023) and the interdependence of respiratory difficulties with the severity of clinically diagnosed SARS-CoV-2 infection. This study also demonstrated significant differences in the values of sleep duration, sleep disorders, and daytime sleepiness indicators between the three groups of respondents, which indicate the influence of the severity of the infection. The PSQI test results revealed significant differences in “bedtime” (H = 6.00 p = 0.050) and “wake-up time” (H = 11.17 p = 0.004) between Groups 1 and 3 of respondents. At 9 months after COVID-19, respondents in Group 1 went to bed at a later time (pp = 0.02727) and woke up later (p = 0.003) than the respondents in Group 3.ConclusionThis study is the first of its kind in the current literature to report on the quality of life of respondents 9 months after being diagnosed with COVID-19 and to draw comparisons between cohorts of hospitalized patients who were treated with medical oxygen vs. the cohorts of outpatient patients. The study's findings regarding post-COVID-19 quality of life indicators and their correlation with the severity of the SARS-CoV-2 infection can be used to categorize patients for targeted post-COVID-19 rehabilitation programs.
      PubDate: 2023-05-16T00:00:00Z
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