Not Your Typical Call for Papers

BJS Editorial Collective

The Berkeley Journal of Sociology is seeking submissions for its 2015 print issue (Volume 59). Submissions are due by June 1, 2015. Please circulate this call.

The Berkeley Journal of Sociology is seeking submissions for its 2015 print issue (Volume 59). Since its relaunch last year, the BJS has put its focus on writing a “history of the present.” Instead of publishing traditional academic research articles, we have featured compelling essays, insightful commentaries, critical analyses, and topical symposiums on the most pressing political and cultural issues of the day. Our aim is to provide critical perspectives from the social sciences on public debates and current events as well as critical reviews of social scientific knowledge.

The BJS is accepting the following kinds of submissions on topical issues or debates:

  • research essays: narrative analyses driven by empirical evidence
  • commentary: social scientific assessments and critiques of events, journalistic coverage, recent reports, and public discourse.
  • conversations: interviews on topical subjects and debates.
  • field memos: elaborations of experiences in the field as they relate to contemporary social struggles, political debates, or social-scientific practice
  • photo essays: sociological and visual critiques from your research sites
  • non-traditional book reviews: essays that use recently published or canonical books as launching pads to discuss broader issues.

To get a sense of the wide range of content we have published, take a look at our current print issue or browse through the archives at We are open to submissions on any topic, but we are also seeking submissions that fit into the following two forums:

Sociologizing Silicon Valley
The influence of the computer technology sector seems ubiquitous as a provider of technological platforms, as a source of political influence, and as a dream destination for young college graduates. Its social underpinnings and consequences are much less explored. We invite submissions that engage Silicon Valley through the lens of gender, gentrification, changing cultural paradigms, or technology studies.

Taking the “Culture” in Pop Culture Seriously
From television series that have gone global to satirical magazines that inflame political passions, what do these everyday products of popular culture expose about the societies that we live in? What kinds of visions and divisions are woven into the objects of popular culture? To what extent can popular culture help unveil hidden social processes and to what extent does it serve to obscure them? Can popular culture foster unexpected tools of empowerment, and if so, how? We invite submissions that critically engage with these and other questions pertaining to popular culture.

Completed print submissions are due by June 1, 2015. If you wish, you may contact us to inquire about specific ideas or proposals before the deadline. Email submissions (and questions about submissions) to

Print submissions should not exceed 4,000 words. Please email articles as MS Word documents (not PDFs), and attach photos as separate JPG files. Relevant sources should be cited in endnotes, not in a separate bibliography. For full submission guidelines, see All submissions will be subject to a review among Berkeley graduate students. Successful submissions will be published under a CC-BY-NC-ND license.

The Berkeley Journal of Sociology is a graduate student-­run journal that has been in publication since 1955. We seek to provide a forum in which to wrestle with questions that extend beyond the internal debates of the academic field. As graduate students, we seek to broaden the interpretive range, imaginative scope, and prospective application of our research to political struggles, emerging cultural trends, and imagination of alternative futures. We are not content to be relegated to the sidelines. The point, after all, is to change the world.

Please circulate. In addition to this Call for Papers, we continue to accept submissions of online-only articles on a rolling basis.