Planned Preconference to the ASA Annual Meeting:
“Feeling Race—An Invitation to Explore Racialized Emotions”
August 10, 2018
At a time when globalization is increasingly contested in practice and scholarship, the rise of anti-globalization forces has cast the spotlight on the successes, failures and limitations of international organizations (IOs), ubiquitous actors which structure the institutional environment underpinning world economic, environmental and social affairs.
Political science has dominated the study of IOs. Yet, in recent years, a distinctive sociology of international organizations is emerging. It crosses over such diverse subfields as global and transnational sociology, economic sociology, sociologies of law and culture, organizations and professions. It variously focuses on markets and rights, health and finance, terrorism and development, among many other issues. Its theoretical and methodological variants reflect wider orientations in our discipline. Despite the promise of this diversity, however, strands of work on IOs in sociology have not adequately been brought into productive conversation with each other.
This year’s Annual Meeting theme “Feeling Race—An Invitation to Explore Racialized Emotions” offers opportunities to expand the sociology of international organizations in new directions. Neither in political science nor sociology has adequate attention been given to the structures of domination and race that permeate the transnational and global. Further, while emotion is salient in the decision-making and implementation of global governance, it has been little explored. Yet, it might offer a powerful sociological counterpoint to the rational actor, rational design and international political economy theories so prominent in political science and international relations.