Welcome to Peel Urbanscapes, your destination for discussions about social inequality and urban politics in the Peel Region and Greater Toronto Area. Some of the topics featured deal with issues of food, housing, gentrification, law and the criminal justice system.

This blog developed out of a course on Urban Politics and Ethnographic Writing (SOC410) at the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM). It has continued as part of two courses: Research Projects in Sociology as well as in Criminology, Law and Society (SOC439; SOC440). These courses, taught by Professor Hae Yeon Choo (previously),  Professor Sida Liu and Professor Kristin Plys provide students with the opportunity to conduct advanced research. The primary goal is to give students a chance to get hands-on experience in doing empirical research, while also reflecting on the relationship between theory and methods. The blog provides students with a space to share their research with the public.

Professor Hae Yeon Choo

Professor Hae Yeon Choo will provide guidance to students throughout their research process, and is well equipped to do so given that her research centers on gender, transnational migration, and citizenship to examine global social inequality. In her empirical and theoretical work, she employs an intersectional approach to social inequalities, integrating gender, race, and class in her analyses. Her recent book Decentering Citizenship: Gender, Labor, and Migrant Rights in South Korea (Stanford University Press, 2016) offer an account of how inequalities of gender, race, and class affect migrants’ practice of rights through a comparative study of three groups of Filipina women in South Korea—factory workers, wives of South Korean men, and hostesses at American military camptown clubs.

Professor Sida Liu

Professor Sida Liu’s research interests include law and society, organizations and occupations, criminal justice, political sociology, and globalization. His theoretical approach focuses on understanding social life in terms of space and time. He has many years of experience in teaching and advising students in their research projects on various sociological topics. His recent book Criminal Defense in China: The Politics of Lawyers at Work (with Terence C. Halliday, Cambridge University Press, 2016) examines the political mobilization of Chinese lawyers against authoritarian rule in their criminal defense work using a combination of qualitative and historical methods, including in-depth interviews, archival research, and online ethnography. He has also published many articles in major law and social science journals.

Professor Kristin Plys

Professor Kristin Plys is an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Toronto Mississauga specializing in the political economy of the Global South. She has held several visiting appointments including at the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, India and at the Lahore University of Management Sciences in Lahore, Pakistan. She is currently working on a book with Charles Lemert entitled, Capitalism and its Uncertain Future (under contract with Routledge) along with a sole authored book on urban resistance to India’s Emergency entitled, Brewing Resistance: Indian Coffee House during the Emergency (under contract with Cambridge University Press).

Please check our Blog for students’ work on diaspora food memories, restaurant observations, and interviews with local residents and store owners. Also, check out our Facebook page for updates!

Update: We are now open to diaspora food memories submissions from UTM students, faculty, and staff members. If you are interested in submitting a blog post, please e-mail Professor Hae Yeon Choo at Hy.Choo@utoronto.ca

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