Congratulations to PhD candidate Alexandra Rodney who will be attending the ASA Section on Teaching and Learning’s preconference workshop as a recipient of the 2017 SAGE Teaching Innovations and Professional Development Award. The award is funded by SAGE publications and approximately twenty SAGE authors who donate their royalties to provide a fund to offset the costs incurred by graduate students and pretenure faculty of attending the preconference. The award seeks to “prepare a new generation of leaders in the sociology ‘teaching moment'” and is awarded based on 5 criteria:
- demonstrated commitment to teaching
- potential contribution to the workshop and benefit of attending
- depth of reflection on the dynamics of the classroom
- financial need
- proximity to first full-time college teaching position (recently entered or about to enter)
Alexandra will attend this year’s session which is called “Thinking Matters: Critical Thinking, Active Listening, and Evidence-Based Writing.” Alexandra is passionate about teaching sociology. She has already participated in 35 teaching-related workshops and earned a Teaching Fundamentals Certificate from the University of Toronto. She hopes that attending the preconference session at the ASA will help her develop community-engaged and experiential learning activities for students, especially those that are applicable for use in a variety of class sizes and heterogeneous groups.
Alexandra is one of 26 recipients of the SAGE Teaching Innovations Award and the only one from Canada. The full list and the list of sponsoring authors is available here.
University of Toronto PhD Candidate Alexandra Rodney recently published a blog post on the site Sociological Images. The blog, created and edited by Professor Lisa Wade of Occidental College in Los Angeles, provides short sociological discussions of “compelling and timely imagery that spans the breadth of sociological inquiry.” It is widely used by instructors of sociology and by people just interested in exploring contemporary issues through a sociological lens.
Alexandra published a discussion about Totem Vodka, a vodka that was produced for a short time in the Vancouver area in June and July, 2016 before being pulled from the market in response to objections. The piece introduces the concept of Cultural Appropriation and then uses Totem Vodka to illustrate the concept.
The post begins:
Totem Vodka and Indigenous Cultural Appropriation
Cultural appropriation generally refers to the adoption of traditional practices, objects, or images by a person or group that is not part of the originating culture. Cultural appropriation can become problematic when it is done without permission, serves to benefit the dominant group, and erases or further marginalizes the oppressed group. In this way, cultural appropriation can recreate larger structures of inequality.
On a recent stroll through a duty-free shop, I was introduced to one of these problematic examples in the form of a new Canadian product named “Totem Vodka,” packaged in a bottle resembling a totem pole. Totem Vodka is not a product of Indigenous entrepreneurship.
Read the full Sociological Images post here.
Alexandra Rodney is a PhD Candidate in Sociology with research interests focusing on the Sociology of Culture, and Gender. Her dissertation work probes into the world of food and healthy living blogs to bring understanding to the production and reception of food and fitness discourses in Canada and the United States.