Sounds Like... (Letter to the Editor)

Mathieu Deflem

This is a copy of a letter published in Contexts 9(1), p. 4, 2010.
Also available in print-friendly pdf format.

Cite as: Deflem, Mathieu. 2010. "Sounds Like..." Letter to the Editor. Contexts 9(1):4.

In response to the recent piece by the Contexts editors on the confusion between sociology and socialism in the Summer 2009 issue, I was pleased to see the difference confirmed. I am not sure to what extent this confusion can be solely or even primarily attributed to the fact that the words are alike in sharing the same Latin root (socius). Be that as it may, the readers of Contexts might be interested to hear of how the confusion between sociology and socialism affected a book of sociological autobiographies I recently edited called Sociologists in a Global Age (Ashgate, 2007).

For the cover of the book, the publisher had suggested the great idea to use photographs of the various contributing authors. The designers at the publisher initially came up with a cover that, as readers will note from the attached image, had a peculiar mistake in the title. When the proofs of the cover with the mistake were sent to me, I immediately shared it with the book’s authors, arousing much laughter all around, although this may not be just a laughing matter. As the Contexts readers will note from the second attached image, the mistake was duly fixed and our work by and about sociologists was published in proper form, even though some of the contributing sociologists may well be socialists, too. I didn’t ask.

Mathieu Deflem
University of South Carolina

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