Living sociology refers to the life of sociology, seen as a field of competing scientific research programs. The dynamism of each program requires, on the one hand, engaging internal contradictions and external anomalies and, on the other hand, extended dialogue among the programs themselves. Living sociology also refers to the life of sociologists as they participate in the society they study. My understanding of these two dimensions of reflexive science—the scientific and the hermeneutic—developed through the interaction of teaching and research. I trace the way I learned the extended case method in Zambia and reformulated it through collaborations with students at Berkeley, arriving at the idea of the scientific research program. I show how I tried to contribute to the Marxist research program by wrestling with anomalies that sprung from my experiences working in factories in the United States, Hungary, and Russia. Finally, I describe how teaching social theory led me to Marxist conversations with structural functionalism and with the work of Pierre Bourdieu as well as prefiguring an extended conversation between W.E.B. Du Bois and the sociological canon.


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