Home | People |

Sam Haraway



PhD Candidate, Sociology, University of California-Davis (June 2018)

MA, Sociology, University of California-Davis

BA, Sociology and Political Science, Coe College

Research Interests:

• Science and Technology Studies (STS), Culture, and Sport
• Organization, Power, and Governance
• Social Theory and Comparative/Historical Sociology

Dissertation Abstract:

My dissertation is a socio-historical study of the “techno-athlete” that treats Lance Armstrong’s seven-consecutive Tour de France victories (1999-2005) and doping controversy as a case by which to reexamine questions concerning subjectivity, agency, and doping in sport. I first reconstruct sport as “trials of strength” (Latour 1988) between heterogenous actor-networks. Far from competitions between human individuals or symbolic representations of the “pure” body, what I call “techno-sport” is anchored in the assemblages of laboratories, materials, bodies, knowledge, institutions, sponsorships, and so on, by which contemporary sport unfolds. I then explore Armstrong’s training for the 1999-2005 Tours de France as a process of translation by which aerodynamic science, nutrition regimes, clothing and equipment designs, periodized training methods, and blood-boosting techniques (by PEDs and altitude training alike), generate a techno-athlete who is at once distributed and centered by a heterogeneous network (Mialet 2012). By understanding sport as a material and collective process we can escape the myth of the singularized, heroic athlete around which the biopolitics of anti-doping expands today. I ask, what becomes of skilled performances, the subjectivity and agency of the contemporary athlete, in light of the heterogeneous collectivities through which contemporary sport unfolds?

Committee: Patrick Carroll (chair), John R. Hall, Hélène Mialet (York University)

Selected Conferences:

“Enacting Lance-the-Hero: Singularizing an Extended Body.” Bodies, Technologies, and In/Sensibilities in Movement. 4S Annual Conference (Boston, MA). August 31, 2017.

“Making Sense of Pains” (w/ Robin Rae, University of Vienna). Bodies, Technologies, and In/Sensibilities in Movement. 4S Annual Conference (Boston, MA). August 31, 2017.

“Lance Armstrong and His Collective Body.” Health, Medicine, Body: Managing Life. Social Science History Association (Chicago, IL). November 18, 2016.

“Techno-Sport in Action: Lance Armstrong and the Sociology of the Techno-Athlete.” Society for Social Studies of Science / European Association for the Study of Science and Technology (Barcelona, Spain). September 1, 2016.

“Doped Bodies, Clean Sport: Reassembling the Anti-Doping Apparatus in Professional Cycling, 1955-2013.” Pacific Sociological Association (Oakland, CA). April 2, 2016.

Palmer, Donald and Sam Haraway. “The Social Construction of Organizational Wrongdoing.” Making Sense of Scandals (Oxford University, UK). September 1, 2015.


I teach in the areas of sociological theory, cultural sociology, the self and society, organizations, and STS.