Damon Mayrl, associate professor of sociology, coauthored a new paper “The Archive as a Social World” in the journal Qualitative Sociology. “Historical scholars often adopt a solitary ethic, conceiving of their work as the product of a lonely and isolated individual toiling away in a dusty archive,” according to the study. “In this article, we focus on the practice of archival research to demonstrate that this solitary ethic is just that—an idealized representation that differentiates and unifies a group of scholars—rather than a description of the actual research practice of those engaging with historical materials.” Mayrl and his coauthor Nicholas Hoover Wilson, assistant professor of sociology at Stony Brook University, argue that the archive’s social character should be understood as a methodological opportunity for historical sociologists, allowing them to maximize and extend their research by inspiring creative research strategies.