School of Sociology and Social Policy

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Christian Karner

Associate Professor, Faculty of Social Sciences



Christian Karner got his BA (First Class) in Social and Cultural Studies from the University of Nottingham in 1998 and went on to do an MSc (Distinction) in Social Anthropology at the LSE. He then returned to Nottingham to do a PhD on the subject of "The Categories of Hindu Nationalism: A Neo-Structuralist Analysis of the Discourse of Hindutva" (2002).

Following this, he was on a two-year Leverhulme Fellowship working on "(Counter-) hegemonic national identities" before being appointed as a Lecturer in the School of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Nottingham. He has previously co-organized the School's research centre on Identities, Citizenship and Migration (ICMiC). Christian has been a Research Associate at the Center for Austrian Studies at the University of Minnesota, and he also has close teaching and research connections with the Instytut Kultury Europejskiej of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan (Poland).

Christian's research focuses on the discursive negotiations of ethnic, national and religious identities in the context of contemporary globalization, and as articulated in a variety of empirical contexts, with particular foci on contemporary Austria and on inner-City Birmingham (as part of his ongoing work with David Parker on "Saltley Stories"). Christian's publications analyze a range of relevant signifying practices and civil society activities (from popular music, newspapers and literature, to "street magazines" and community organizations) and are informed by a critical engagement with social/ cultural theory (including (post-)structuralism, structuration theory and the sociology of globalization). He is especially interested in the negotiation of social identities in particular localities, in the course of everyday life and the context of contemporary socio-economic dislocations, and against the backdrop of culturally shared and negotiated memories.

Christian's books include Writing History, Constructing Religion (2005, co-edited with James Crossley), Ethnicity and Everyday Life (2007), Negotiating National Identities: Between Globalization, the Past and "the Other" (2011,, The Use and Abuse of Memory: Interpreting World War II in Contemporary European Politics (2013, co-edited with Bram Mertens), and The Commonalities of Global Crises: Markets, Communities and Nostalgia (2016, co-edited with Bernhard Weicht).

Christian teaches in the sociology of ethnicity (and the everyday), nationalism, national identities and religion as well as social theory. He is interested (and currently involved) in supervising postgraduate research students in any of these areas.

Expertise Summary

The social, cultural and political negotiations of various ethnic, religious, national and local identities in the context of contemporary globalization; urban sociology; memory studies.

Teaching Summary

Ethnicity, nationalism, globalisation.

Research Summary

Ethnicity, national identities, nationalism, religion, globalisation, the everyday, social and cultural theory, memory studies.

ORCID identifier: 0000-0001-7906-0759

Recent Publications

School of Sociology and Social Policy

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