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Carl Cassegård


Department of Sociology and Work
Visiting address
Skanstorget 18
41122 Göteborg
Room number
Postal address
Box 720
40530 Göteborg

About Carl Cassegård

CARL CASSEGÅRD´S doctoral thesis was written during a five-year stay in Japan, 1997-2002. Since 2009 he has been teaching sociology and doing research on Japan at the University of Gothenburg (since 2011 as associate professor in sociology).

His research has largely been in the field of cultural sociology and social theory. His research on how literature and popular culture can be used to trace shifting experiences of modernity and shifts in the ideal of the ”good life” led to dissertations in sociology at Kyoto University in Japan in 2002 and at Lund University in Sweden in 2004, and to a book, Shock and Naturalization, which was published in 2007.

Carl’s research since 2003 has been mainly related to social movements. A large proportion of his interest concerns the experience of modern society – as shocking or natural, unresponsive or as an environment that we have the power to reshape – and how this experience is influenced by marginalization and by engagement in social movements and activism. His theoretical background is in critical theory: Benjamin, Adorno, Habermas. He has also been interested in nationalism and historiography, with a focus on the treatment of WWII in German and Japanese historiography.

Specialist Fields Social movements, empowerment, urban space and gentrification, the public sphere, collective trauma, and theories of modernity.

Current research In 2013 Carl concluded the research project ”Freeter activism: civil society and social movements in contemporary Japan”, which focused on political activism among youth in contemporary Japan, in particular the so-called ”precarity movement”, and which led to the book Youth Movements, Trauma and Alternative Space in Contemporary Japan (Brill, 2013). Since 2013 he participates in the project ”The environmental movement in a globalizing world” in which he focuses on the environmental movement in Japan.