Who is the stereotypical astronaut and why should we care?

Close your eyes and think about an astronaut. What is the image that you see? Chances are, it is a well-built man in a NASA spacesuit, and not a woman. This does not mean that you are a sexist – it simply shows how cultural stereotypes leave an imprint in your brain. Women and men … Continue reading Who is the stereotypical astronaut and why should we care?

My rocket is bigger than yours: outer space as an elite playground

Social inequality and power dynamics are the bread and butter of sociologists. We are trained to spot inequality in any society and to understand its cause and effect. When humans left Earth’s orbit, inequality came with. In this post, I give voice to critical sociologists who have long ditched their rose-colored glasses and observe heavens … Continue reading My rocket is bigger than yours: outer space as an elite playground

Sociology of outer space?

One of my small joys in life is to watch people blink slowly when I tell them that one of my areas of study is sociology of outer space. “Cool” or “Can you really do that?” are the most common responses so far. I agree – it is not something one comes across daily. I … Continue reading Sociology of outer space?

Open source, open mind. A personal manifesto

Today is Independence Day. I spent all morning thinking how academe, albeit claiming intellectual freedom, is dependent on for-profit corporations. How we willingly let publishers and tech companies profit during the course of our work. Work that we claim is not for profit, but for the greater good of the human kind. Recently, I have … Continue reading Open source, open mind. A personal manifesto

Space Girls: gender and status in space analog facilities

NASA has scheduled the first manned mission to Mars by 2030s. Soon human society will expand beyond this planet. But humans will have to endure a very long and crowded flight before settling in anywere. And even then, it will take years to expand living and working quarters beyond bare minimum. The start of our … Continue reading Space Girls: gender and status in space analog facilities