Morality, Inequality, and the Power of Categories

7 June 2022
Start time 
4:30 pm
Palazzo di Sociologia - Via Verdi 26, Trento
Professors Room - I floor
Target audience: 
University community
Reservation required
Lyn Spillman - University of Notre Dame


  • Giuseppe Sciortino, University of Trento


  • Andrea Cossu Elena Pavan, University of Trento


Sociological contributions to empirical understanding of morality may focus on properties of actors and actions, such as their commitments to different moral foundations, or else on the “moral background” of taken-for-granted categorical presuppositions about others and about fields of action.

In this paper, Professor Lyn Spillman draws on cultural sociology to argue that empirical genealogies of cultural categories offer the better approach to understanding morality in relation to power and inequality.

To illustrate, she draws on recent sociological studies of ethnic and racial stigma, economic justice, and human rights.