For Erin Robinson, PhD, associate professor of sociology, anthropology and criminal justice, the intersection of sociology and environmental studies is a key area in her teaching and scholarship. Robinson’s research on air pollution in Tonawanda brings together research practices and mechanisms for social change in this newly published article “Sharing Stories: The Role of Personal Narratives in Community Mobilization” Humanity and Society, November 2016, Vol 40:4, 442-461.
The article discusses the role of narratives in social change, specifically how telling stories through qualitative interviewing leads to community mobilization. Residents concerned about environmental contamination in their communities turned to the revelations in each other’s stories to empower and inspire action for social change. Reflections on the role of the researcher and ethics give the reader an insight into community-based research practices from a sociological perspective.
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Submitted by: Sara Morris, PhD, associate vice president, Academic Affairs