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Jean Martin

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Jean Isobel Martin (neé Craig) was born in Melbourne on 21st June 1923. Studying anthropology at the University of Sydney, Martin gained first class honours in 1943 and the University medal for her master’s degree in 1945. Martin went on to study briefly at the London School of Economics and later at Chicago University, before gaining her PhD from the Australian National University (1954). After a string of assistant research positions across seven different universities, Martin finally obtained her first tenured full-time academic position at age 42 as Foundation Professor of Sociology at La Trobe University, Melbourne (1965). Martin wrote extensively on subjects ranging from migration, social policy, family and kinship ties, social welfare, education and industrial sociology, and produced several important books, including Community and Identity (1972) and The Migrant Presence (1978). Martin was president of SAANZ from 1970-1971, and her contribution to the establishment of sociology as a discipline in the sixties and early seventies, as well as her extensive, pioneering work on multiculturalism and poverty, has seen her dubbed the ‘Mother of Australian Sociology’. A prestigious TASA award was established in her honour in 1980. [a weblink should be made here to the Jean Martin Award]. Jean Martin passed away in Sydney, on the 25th September 1979.

For more on Jean Martin, see:

Connell, R. (2014) ‘Setting Sail’: The making of sociology in Australia, 1955–75, Journal of Sociology

Sheila Shaver, Peter Beilharz, Trevor Hogan (2015) The Martin Presence: Jean Martin and the Making of Social Sciences in Australia, UNSW Press.

Shaver, S. A public sociology for the mainstream: Jean Martin’s sociology for nation-building

Thanks to Raewyn Connell, we are able to publish a nice summary of what Jean thought of as a guide to sociology, at the time the discipline was being founded in Australia. 

NOTE FROM JEAN MARTIN, 1965

Sociology –References

In suggested order of reading. Mitchell is a good short text. Most of the other items are “classics”.

W. F. Whyte, Street Corner Society
J. West, Plainville, U.S.A.
R.S. and H.M. Lynd, Middletown, Middltown in Transition
J. Dollard, Caste and Class in a Southern Town
W.L. Warner, The Social Life of a Modern Community
B. Davies and Gardner, Deep South
M. Young and P. Willmott, Family and Kinship in East London
R. Benedict, Patterns of Culture (Paperback)
G.C. Homans, The Human Group
A.W. Jones, Life,Liberty and Property
E. Bott, Family and Social Network
K. Lewin, Resolving Social Conflicts
G.D. Mitchell, Sociology
E. Durkheim, The Rules of Sociological Method
T. Parsons, Essays in Sociological Theory
J. Madge, The Origins of Scientific Sociology
R.K. Merton, Social Theory and Social Structure
E. Shils, “The Calling of Sociology”, in Theories of [Sociology crossed out] Society, ed. T. Parsons et al., Vol. II