Why Positive Sociology Needs Tragic Sociology

How might positive psychology and positive sociology benefit from greater engagement with theological views of suffering? At a the 2015 meetings of the American Sociological Association (ASA), I explained why I think positive psychology, and the nascent field of positive sociology, needs to engage with tragic sociology. For my book Faith Makes Us Live: Surviving […]

Critical Realist Research Methods

What might critical realist research methods look like? At the 2015 Annual Meetings of the International Association of Critical Realism, I discussed some common problems I saw in syllabi and textbooks used to teach sociological methods. With the help of Cameron Yick, Yale Class of 2017, I read more than 40 syllabi from top-25 ranked […]

Virtue and Vulnerability

Is Viktor Frankl’s life a story of resilience or vulnerability? It’s both, I think. Frankl survived the Nazi concentration camps and went on to an influential career as a psychiatrist and writer. Yet, he never forgot how his experiences of pain and suffering formed his own social ethic. As he writes in the epilogue entitled […]

Branding Your Scholarly Passion on Social Media: A Three-Week Course Through the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity

How many scholars have told me that social media takes away from their work? Certainly more than those who have told me social media enhances their scholarship and teaching. As part of National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity (NCFDD) guest expert workshops, from March 17-31, 2015, I’ll lead a seminar in which I hope […]

Happiness at Yale

On September 16, 2014, I published this article in Public Discourse. College students, like everyone else, want to be happy. Educators should help them ground this desire for happiness in acts of virtue. Students at a one-week seminar on happiness I co-taught recently at Yale University made a proposal so simple that I was mystified: […]

The Calhoun Happiness Project at Yale

I originally published this post on the Black, White and Gray blog hosted by Patheos on October 10, 2013. “How can Yale undergraduates learn and apply principles from positive psychology and positive sociology? More than 20 students jointed the Calhoun Happiness Project which I started in one of Yale’s 12 residential colleges, Calhoun College. The group […]