Journal Article — Sociology of Self-Knowledge at Macalester College — by Khaldoun Samman




After having known Behrooz Tamdgidi as a good friend and colleague since the early 1990s, his concept of the sociology of self-knowledge became meaningful to me in my experience of teaching over the past few years. Having become more familiar with his work over those many years, it became apparent to me he was onto something quite profound. After offering a large number of courses on such themes as Global Racial Formations, macro level analysis of race, class, and gender inequalities, Social Problems, and a course on Islam and the West, Tamdgidi’s concept of the sociology of self-knowledge made me realize that I had missed the most important theme of C. Wright Mills’ discussion of the relationship between private troubles and public issues. It was the interaction between biography and social structure, private troubles and public issues, and the self and society that completed the quest for knowledge creation. It was this relationship between self and society that Tamdgidi’s work made me become aware of my teaching bias towards the macro-level.

Recommended Citation

Samman, Khaldoun. 2004/2005. “Sociology of Self-Knowledge at Macalester College.” Pp. 137-139 in Sociology of Self-Knowledge: Course Topic as well as Pedagogical Strategy (Human Architecture: Journal of the Sociology of Self-Knowledge: Volume III, Issues 1&2,  2004/2005). Belmont, MA: Okcir Press (an imprint of Ahead Publishing House).

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