Research Cluster Spotlight
Canadian Network of Durkheimian Studies
Published by the CSA Winter 2015 e-Bulletin, January 26, 2015
Dr. Ronjon Paul Datta, The University of Windsor

The Canadian Network of Durkheimian Studies/Réseau canadien d’études durkheimienne (CNDS/RCED) is active in several areas. A special issue of the Canadian Journal of Sociology (Volume 39, Issue 4), focusing on contemporary engagements with The Elementary Forms of Religious Life, was published in 2014. It was edited by Drs. R. P. Datta and T. H. Milbrandt and consists of ten original articles, a review essay by noted American Durkheim scholar Edward Tiryakian, and a substantial editorial introduction. Canadian scholars include Marcel Fournier, Frank Pearce, Alan Blum, James Cosgrave, Mervyn Horgan, and the editors. Contributions were also made by Lionel Obadia (France), Yvonne Niekranz (Denmark), Natalie Polzer (USA), and Alexander Riley (USA). The whole issue is available for free from the journal’s website, ( Additionally, François Pizarro Noël has been conducting Durkheimian research on indigenous people’s forms of civic engagement in Bolivia, especially as concerns environmentalism. Maggie Farbrother, in her final year of an undergraduate degree in criminology at the University of Alberta, won the first Theory Undergraduate Award from the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta for her essay “Durkheim’s Political Sociology: Pathologies in the Division of Labour.”Durkheim’s ontology peaked her interest while taking Dr. Ariane Hanemaayer’s Classical Social Theory course. The activities of CNDS/RCED, together withLaboratoire d’études durkheimiennes de L’Université du Québec à Montréal (LED UQAM) are viewed very positively by those at the British Centre for Durkheimian Studies as reported by Durkheimian scholar, Professor W. S. F. Pickering to Dr. R. P. Datta, September 2, 2014. Sessions on Durkheim and feminism, contemporary social analysis, the philosophy of social science, and textual and historical analyses of Durkheimian sociology, are planned for the 2015 Congress. Digital productions of Durkheimian material are currently in progress and will be available on the CSA website later in 2015.


The Canadian Network of Durkheimian Studies/Réseau canadien d’études durkheimienne (CNDS/RCED)

Canadian Durkheimians held two conferences during the 2013-14 academic year. The first, Durkheim et le Politique (August 27-29, 2013) was organised by Laboratoire d’études durkheimiennes de L’Université du Québec à Montréal (LED UQAM). François Pizarro Noël was the main organiser. This international conference, funded by the Humanities and Social Sciences Research Council of Canada, with participants from Canada, the US, UK, France, and Brazil, included eighteen papers, including a keynote address by noted Durkheimian sociologist, Edward Tiryakian. In 2014, CNDS also officially became a ‘Research Cluster’ of the Canadian Sociological Association (CSA) and its website will be hosted by the CSA. May 29-30, 2014, CNDS held its first annual meetings under the auspices of the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Canada. Ronjon Paul Datta, François Pizarro Noël, Tara Milbrandt, and William Ramp organised the sessions. Eighteen professors and graduate students presented work in five sessions on a wide variety of topics including: suicide, historical studies of Durkheim’s work, Durkheimian analyses of contemporary social life, Durkheim and contemporary social theory, and heterodox solidarities. All sessions were very well attended and discussion vibrant – intellectual collective effervescence was much in evidence.


Prepared by Dr. Ronjon Paul Datta, Co-Secretary, The Canadian Network of Durkheimian Studies/Réseau canadien d’études durkheimienne and submitted to Prof. W. S. F. Pickering, Secretary, The British Centre for Durkheimian Studies, September 22, 2014 for publication in their Bulletin.