American Sociological Association

ASA Centennial News . . .

ASA's Centennial Inspires Expansion of Sorokin Lecture Series

Applications from organizations are invited

The American Sociological Assocation's (ASA) Sorokin Lecture has been a longstanding opportunity for a distinguished ASA member to deliver a lecture at a regional sociological society meeting. Since 1967, each year the winner of the ASA Distinguished Scholarly Publication Award has traveled to a regional association and speaks about the book that had been honored. A restricted fund, named for past ASA President Pitirim Sorokin, underwrote the costs for the visiting lecturer. (Click here to view a pdf version (44 KB) of the Sorokin lecture brochure.)

As part of the planning for ASA’s centennial, ASA Council discussed many ways in which the Association could extend sociological knowledge to new audiences, including students, faculty in other fields, and interested community members. Some associations, such as Sociologists for Women in Society or the Midwest Sociological Society, have some form of a speaker’s bureau. After some discussion of various options, the Council decided to modify the existing Sorokin Lectureship to achieve greater outreach potential in three ways.

First, the new Sorokin Lectureship will include more possible lecturers. Any of the winners of major ASA awards in the past two years may be available to make visits to associations or campuses. Thus the range of topics on which lecturers could speak is expanded. Second, the list of eligible organizations to host a lecture has expanded from regional sociological societies to any sociological society and even college campuses. A state sociological society, for example, may be looking for a keynote speaker. A specialty organization may link with one of the ASA award winners according to their specialty or research interests. A campus in a metropolitan area might invite colleagues from their campus and other nearby colleges to hear one of the award-winning sociologists. Third, ASA is now able to fund up to four lectures per year instead of a single lectureship as in past years.

A full listing of the recent award winners is posted on the ASA website.

These changes should provide a vibrant road show in which to share the sociological message.

Applications Process

Any of the winners of major ASA awards in the past two calendar years may be available to deliver a lecture at a state, regional, or aligned sociological association meeting, or on a campus. ASA would cover the costs of travel and up to two days of hotel costs. The host would cover registration (if applicable) and meals. Contingent upon available funding, the ASA can support up to four such lecture trips each calendar year.

To apply, send a letter of inquiry with specific information about the event and the audience as well as the lecturer preferred. Executive officers or presidents of associations, or faculty (with chair’s support) in departments may apply to host a lecturer. Submit these materials and any questions to:

Michael Murphy
Director, Governance
American Sociological Association
1307 New York Avenue, NW, #700
Washington, DC 20005
202-383-9005 x327

Preference will be given to groups who have not previously hosted a lecturer.

Last Updated on January 21, 2005
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