Humanist Sociologist at the End of the World? Confronting Cascading Crises Together It feels like attacks are coming from all directions. Transgender people and women are losing access to life-saving medical care. Washed-up musicians angrily shoot cans of cheap beer with assault weapons and domestic terrorists are storming public libraries around the US. Meanwhile, children take to the streets and occupy state capitols demanding that legislators enact meaningful gun control. The climate crisis is intensifying. Californians are recovering from devastating floods. Communities across the southeast are sorting through rubble after weeks of deadly tornado outbreaks. However, officials in Atlanta, Georgia are razing forests and killing Indigenous protestors to make way for their “Cop City.” Corporate profits have never been higher, yet more Americans face hunger and homelessness due to price gouging on food, medicine, housing, and other basic necessities. Even our alleged Ivory Towers are under siege as reactionary politicians begin to dismantle so-called “woke” curricula and neoliberal administrators develop plans for faculty buyouts and layoffs in advance of the dreaded "demographic cliff". I could go on, but my chest feels tight just from typing this paragraph.
It’s clear that our work as humanist sociologists is more important than ever. I invite you to join us from November 1 through 4, 2023 for our annual meetings in New Orleans, Louisiana. Our conference theme is “Humanist Sociology at the End of the World? Confronting Cascading Crises Together.” I encourage you to submit papers, workshops, and panel sessions that highlight the academic, creative, and activist work you are doing to challenge white supremacy, cis-hetero-patriarchy, Christo-fascism, the climate crisis, and all other forms of oppression. Additionally, I encourage you to engage the central question of the conference, “how can we support one another as humans/academics/activists as our communities, organizations, and institutions fail?” I look forward to seeing you all soon. Please do not hesitate to email me if you have any questions or concerns, or if there is anything I can do to support you.
In Solidarity, Marc Settembrino (he/him or they/them) President, Association for Humanist Sociology Marc.Settembrino@selu.edu
The program is now available. Please see below. For a pdf copy of the program, click here 1. For your convenience, we have put a hotel map and an "At a Glance" section in the final program. 2. We have included a short list of restaurants and various other points of interest while in New Orleans in the final program (see attached). 3. There are unique transportation options, including the trolly. Please take a look at the final program for more information. 4. The hotel is cashless, so you may want to bring cash to tip the servers, housekeepers, support staff, and entertainment.
Please see below the program for some other important information.
Published a book recently?(or ever?) Consider bringing a copy to add to the AHS Book Auction. The book auction is a long-standing tradition that helps us share each other's work and raise a few dollars for AHS in the process.
Please bring an item for the community altar! Our community altar is an opportunity to remember our past as we chart our path forward. Please consider contributing to setting our collective intentions for the organization.
Registration Opens at 3:30 pm on Wednesday, November 1. If you’re arriving early and looking for something to do, we’ll open the registration table until 5 pm on Wednesday. We’ll also have a few dinner group options available for those looking to connect. I plan on attending the Big Easy Sisters mobile memorial later Wednesday evening and I hope you’ll join me!
Note for Presenters & Facilitators In keeping with AHS tradition, presenters are asked to begin with a short reflexive statement. This is a statement of the author’s values and perspectives with respect to the subject area (see Humanity & Society page for examples). AHS is committed to sessions that maximize the exchange of ideas. Toward that end, we have adopted the following guidelines for program presentations:
Presenters are asked not to read papers, but instead to talk about the major ideas and findings in their work;
AHS meeting sessions do not, except in special circumstances, include a discussant. Instead, the entire audience serves as discussant;
Presenters should plan presentations to leave adequate time for other presentations and group discussions; and
Session facilitators are asked to set time limits, keep track of time, help guide discussion, and pose questions where appropriate.
Projectors and screens are available in all rooms. If you are planning to use the projector, please bring a Laptop. If possible, coordinate among other presenters to confirm who will bring the laptop.
Most sessions do not have a moderator. As noted, moderators at AHS are more like facilitators. They help keep us on track and can help guide discussion and pose questions as necessary. If your session does not have a moderator, please work together to stay on time and allow everyone a chance to speak.
Getting to the Hotel. Le Pavillon is located at 833 Poydras St. in New Orleans’ Central Business District. The Louis Armstrong Airport has detailed information on ground transportation on its website. A taxi will run you about $36 (plus tip).
Parking at the Hotel. The hotel offers valet parking for $51 per vehicle, per night. (Yikes!) Less expensive parking options may be available in nearby lots or garages. Keep in mind, this is New Orleans and AHS cannot guarantee the safety of your vehicle. (If you’re driving a Kia and staying overnight, you should probably use the valet but they probably won’t guarantee that your car won’t get stolen).
The Hotel is Cashless! The hotel does not accept cash payments. Please plan accordingly.
Getting Food. The hotel offers breakfast from 7 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. in Bijoux (next to the Lobby bar). Daisy Mae’s Fried Chicken and Breakfast is a Black-owned “cozy, old-school cafe & bar serving American Southern dishes focused on fried chicken & breakfast” located across the street from the hotel. There are many other great places to eat in New Orleans, however, keep in mind that some are more popular than others, and breakfast spots like Ruby Slipper may have long wait times. There are several lunch options within walking distance of the hotel. There is a Rouses Market located a few blocks from the hotel (701 Baronne St.). Rouses is a Louisiana-owned grocery chain (that isn’t without its problems), but if you’re looking to stock up on snacks or refreshments, this is a great option.
Dinner Groups. Keeping with AHS traditions, we’re organizing nightly dinner meetups. Please see the registration table for more information and to sign up!
There isn’t a coffee shop in the hotel. However, Cafe Bon Ami is around the corner from the hotel (822 Perdido St.), but sadly they close at 3 p.m. Have no fear, the Starbucks located at 601 Poydras St. is open until at least 8 p.m.
Getting Around on The Streetcar. You will need exact change for the streetcar unless you go cashless. For adults, it is $1.25 per ride (children aged five to 12th grade are $0.50 and seniors/riders with disabilities are $0.40). Prefer cashless? Download Le Pass, the official app of the New Orleans RTA to see routes with live updates, purchase passes, and get more information about accessibility. If you’re planning on riding the streetcar multiple times, we recommend purchasing a Jazzy Pass. One, three, and 31-day unlimited ride “Jazzy Passes” are all available for $3, $9, and $55 respectively, and are definitely the most cost-effective way to utilize the bus and streetcars over the course of a day or an entire trip. See this link for more information about routes and times: https://www.neworleans.com/plan/transportation/streetcars/
Activist Cafes Activist cafes are an important AHS tradition where we are able to break bread with local organizers and learn about the political struggles happening in the communities we visit. This year, we are excited to host two Activist Cafe lunches featuring the St. Tammany Library Alliance and Together Baton Rouge! Your conference registration includes one lunch, however, you may purchase a second lunch during registration.
St. Tammy Library Alliance - Thursday, November 2 at 12 pm Did you know that St. Tammany Parish is ground zero for the fascist movement to censor materials in public libraries? TheSt. Tammany Parish Library Allianceis a grassroots group of people and organizations defending our parish libraries so they may continue to provide a public, neutral space with accessibility to a wide spectrum of materials for all citizens without censorship or interference by political groups, according to our First Amendment Rights. For more information, see YouTube video below. Together Baton Rouge - Friday, November 3 at 12 pm Together Baton Rougeis a broad-based coalition of congregations and community-based organizations in the Greater Baton Rouge area, with the capacity to address community problems large and small. TBR is deliberate about crossing the lines of race, religion, neighborhood, and political affiliation. TBR organizes to build the power to address issues affecting families and communities and is strictly a non-partisan organization. TBR has three primary goals:
to build relationships across our community based on trust and a willingness to listen to each other,
to equip our members and leadership with skills and practices to get results, and
to achieve change on concrete issues as part of our common call to justice.
The conference will be hosted at Le Pavillon Hotel located in New Orlean’s Central Business district. Our group rate is $159/night (plus taxes and fees) on Wednesday, November 1, and $189/night (plus taxes and fees) from November 2 through 4. You can book your room directly at this website or by calling 1-844-656-8636 and requesting the Association for Humanist Sociology Group Rate. As always, it’s imperative we book with the conference hotel to ensure that we meet our contractual obligations - BUT before you head over to AirBnB, please consider the impact that short-term rentals have had on New Orleans. If you stay in an Airbnb, you are contributing to the ongoing displacement of the people who make New Orleans, New Orleans. If you would like to learn more about how short-term rentals are affecting the city please read the Short Term Rentals, Long Term Impact report by the Jane Place Neighborhood Sustainability Initiative.
Conference registration rates are listed below. All presenters must register by October 1, 2023, or they may be dropped from the program. Registration will include one activist café lunch, and you will have the opportunity to purchase an additional lunch when registering. To register please visit our store: