The Small World of Corporations and the Corporate Elite in American History

It has been more than a decade since the Supreme Court ruled on the case of Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which upheld the principle that independent campaign financing is protected as a form of free speech.  As Temple law professor David Kairys describes, what made the decision so contentious was that not only … Continue reading The Small World of Corporations and the Corporate Elite in American History

History, Culture, and the Measuring of Meaning Structures

One of the things that makes me so happy about having joined the Broadstreet crew is how often my fellow contributors write about topics that I—the lone sociologist of the bunch—get really excited about.  The obvious examples here are space and networks, which have been my main focus over my last couple of posts.  For … Continue reading History, Culture, and the Measuring of Meaning Structures

Using Network Analysis to Identify Common Geographies

Following up on the discussion in my previous entries, this week’s post focuses on what do when working with spatial data where the boundaries of the units change over time.  This is a familiar problem for those of doing quantitative history.  In the absence of the type of individual-level data that has become commonplace in … Continue reading Using Network Analysis to Identify Common Geographies

The Organization of Poltical Space in the American West

In my last post, I discussed what I referred to as the endogeneity of historical data. The basic idea here is that the very existence of the historical records that researchers use to generate quantitative data is often a byproduct of the process being studied. To illustrate this concept, I described how the efforts to … Continue reading The Organization of Poltical Space in the American West

The Endogeneity of Historical Data

I am a historical sociologist by training.  While contemporary historical sociology is undoubtedly inspired by the work of classical sociologists including Karl Marx, Max Weber, and W. E. B. DuBois, what we know as historical sociology began to emerge in the 1960s, eventually becoming a recognized subfield in the 1980s. By most accounts, the push … Continue reading The Endogeneity of Historical Data