Time out

I’m at the point where I’m conferenced out. It’s been a pretty busy few days.

By habit I’m a person who needs time to myself. I usually spend a couple of hours, most days, writing. And as often as I can, I find time for apparently mindless activity that allows mind wandering, the kind of generative daydreaming that de Certeau describes so brilliantly. When I don’t have these spacetimes, I reach a point where I can’t do any more.

Right now I need some time and space to think about the idea of Undisciplining and what it represents.

UNdisciplining seems to mean challenging familiar sociological concepts. Engaging with other disciplines interested in similar topics and ideas. Trying out new methods. Experimenting with different platforms and media for communicating the work. Blurring the boundaries between social action and research. And being more inclusive of researchers at all stages of their careers.

There’s a desire, a kind of conference affect, a yearn to be experimental, innovative, activist.

But I’m wondering how far this goes, how far it can go. As someone yesterday pointed out there are serious institutional pressures to do and be disciplinary – teaching, jobs, audits and so on.

Undisciplining feels this morning rather like a melting ice cream. There is still a pretty solid and hard core of academic sociology at its heart, with a lot of fluidity at the edges.

Is that OK? Enough already? I don’t know. And who am I to say anyway? And can I say this any more clearly at this point? Probably not.

I need time and space to think more about it.

Photo by Evan Kirby on Unsplash

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