E027 Surviving Society with Ben Rogaly

In this episode we are lucky enough to be talking to Professor Ben Rogaly, human geographer at the University of Sussex, activist, and one of Saskia’s PhD supervisors. Ben tells us about his work with residents of Peterborough, what ‘gangmastering’ is, and why Peterborough is an important place when it comes to thinking about Englishness, migration and racisms. As well as talking about whiteness in rural England, we ask Ben to help us out in thinking about the debate around anti-semitism in the Labour party – why is it such a big political issue? Why is it so complicated to talk about? And what is Zionism? Along the way, Saskia gets to whip out her 16th Century History A Level knowledge, Tissot contributes his info from the Daily Stormer, and Chantelle brings in her insider view on the Midlands. Thank you so much Ben for coming on the pod and for helping us to survive society!

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E023 Les Back: Migrant City

This week we are super excited to be joined by one of our favourite sociologists and teachers Professor Les Back to talk about his latest book, Migrant City, which he has co-written with Dr Shamser Sinha. After an introduction from Les and Charlynne Bryan, who contributed to Migrant City, Les tells us about the ten-year project in which he and Shamser have followed the lives of 30 migrants, some of whom are refugees and asylum seekers, as they seek to establish their lives in London in the face of brutal UK immigration policies. As well as discussing the racism and colonialism that continues to shape British social, economic and political life, the four of us think together about sociable sociology in a time of division and political unrest, the potential of everyday conviviality as an alternative to racism, and how as sociologists we can attempt to contribute to the humanity and dignity of people who bear the brunt of anti-migrant politics. Huge thanks to Les for taking the time to talk to us, and also to Les, Shamser and your participants for what is a beautiful piece of sociology and a powerful intervention in anti-migrant times.

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E014 Surviving Society with Priyamvada Gopal

In this very special episode, Chantelle and Tissot chat to Dr Priyamvada Gopal, English lecturer at the University of Cambridge and brilliant anti-racist activist. Between the three of us, we pull apart racism and representation in universities, colonialism and its collaborators and the abuse that comes with anti-racist activism. There might be a few swear words in there, but mainly it’s an essential conversation that gives context to the struggles people of colour continue to face in UK higher education.

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E006 Mugabe, Meghan Markle and migration

What’s wrong with the way we talk about Africa? Who cares if Meghan Markle is ‘mixed race’? And why do British citizenship tests matter? We tackle all this and more in this episode on how ‘race’, gender and Britain’s former colonies are portrayed in the media. With some swearing and plenty of historical insights from Tissot.

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