I used to teach the history of sociological theory to 16-19 year olds (sometimes misleadingly known as ‘A’ level Sociology), although somewhere along the line the nature of the job changed, and I think it’s more accurate to say that I’m now more of a general children’s entertainer, which I duly recorded in the 2011 UK National Census.

I’m not going to whinge about it though, I know my place and frankly I’m just glad to have a job (doffs cap), and on occasion, between the demands of an antiquated syllabus and OFSTED’s insistence on including party games in every lesson, I do sometimes get the chance to teach some real sociology.

And lord knows Sociology is needed now more than ever – At the age of 41 (in 2014) I feel as if I’ve  just escaped the shitty backwash from 30 years of Neoliberalism – I managed to get two years on the doll without too much hassle, not only was my university education free, I got a grant, I’ve got a full-time permanent job, own my flat with a reasonable interest-rate mortgage, and I just might be able to fully retire at 60 on a teacher’s pension (hopefully, the tide might yet wash over me).

However, life is not going to be so cushty for many of the students who sit in my sociology classes, and so one of the things this blog aims to do is to consider some of the problems of buying into an ordinary life and some of the alternatives some of them will be forced into adopting.

The rest of the blog focuses on whatever I feel like writing about – Maybe something to do with the A level syllabus (most of it’s pretty interesting), or maybe something about Buddhism, infographics or Extreme Early Retirement, whenever I feel like writing about whatever really.


If you like this sort of thing – then why not my book?

Early Retirement Strategies for the Average Income Earner, or A Critique of Curiously Ordinary Life of the Everyday Worker-Consumer

Available on iTunes, Kobo, and Barnes and Noble – Only £0.63 ($0.99)

Retirement Cover5

Also available on Amazon, but for £1.99 because I’d get a much lower cut if I charged less!

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4 thoughts on “About”

  1. Was struck by my first visit, reading the February 14 blog.
    It’s becoming hard to find intelligent philosophical site, online.
    Having retired (frugally), with a wife and four sons, back in 1989, and now… levelled out with a comfortable life and a reasonbly secure future, I find it interesting to read what I would have hoped for in earlier years.
    Takes a while to absorb a full website, so expect to lurk for a while.
    Keep up the good work.

  2. Hi – Good to hear it worked out for you. I find it deeply depressing that most people seem incapable of breaking the work-hard, consume-hard cycle, finding people who have done so is always an inspiration.

  3. Hi – I’m currently studying the A2 year of A level sociology; and I’m finding your blog really interesting. In relation to the subject, I’m often struck by the vagueness of many of the questions we are asked ‘exam-wise’ not always knowing what direction to take things in. For example- I am right now staring at a question that reads, ‘Assess the impact of sociological theories and research on social policies’ 33 marks. And I confess I do not know where to begin- which social policies to focus on and whether I need to include sociological theory. I wondered – if you had any advice for answering these sort of questions- if there is a ‘rule of thumb’ so to speak?

  4. Hi Lisa,

    Social Policies is not the easiest topic – The way I teach it is through applying the Perspectives – The easiest way in to it is to go back through the course and look at what the New Right suggest are effective Social Policies – applied to the family, education and right realism for crime – Basically role back the state except for setting a framework for competition and being tough on criminals and supporting the nuclear family, then criticize the consequences of these policies using Marxism or Feminism, at the same time outlining the kinds of policies sub-divisions of these perspectives would apply. You could also bring in Positivism – the idea that sociology should work with governments to engineer society (Comte/ Durkheim) and critique this using Marxism/ Interactionism – the idea that Sociology should be critical and subversive, thus not about helping governments at all.

    Hopefully that helps.

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A hyperreflexive blog focussing on critical sociology, infographics, Buddhism and extreme early retirement