Rhodes>Sociology>People>Academic Staff>Ms Claudia Martinez-Mullen

Ms Claudia Martínez Mullen





E-mail: c.martinezmullen@ru.ac.za

Office number: +27 (0)46 603 8862

Licenciada en Sociology – University of Buenos Aires.

Master SocSc. (Summa Cum Laude) – UKZN (Howard Colleague Campus - University of KwaZulu-Natal).

PhD – UKZN (in progress). 


Claudia Martinez Mullen’s central research areas are two:

  1. Comparative analysis of selected socialist and communist parties under neoliberalism (in East Europe – Prague, Czech Republic; West Europe – Paris, France; Latin America – Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Africa - Johannesburg, South Africa) and the historical development of class consciousness through praxis since 1989.
  2.  Her PhD focuses on the relation of Aesthetics and Freedom from different Marxist perspectives (Frankfurt School and Bourdieu Contemporary theory). The main indicator is that of Football spectators of professional football clubs: Pirates and Chiefs from South Africa, and River and Boca from Argentina. Consumption, Identity, Cultural Practices, Aesthetic Taste and Freedom are the main concepts analysed through the research.

Claudia Martinez Mullen completed her full masters dissertation on a similar topic, but the main indicator was the influence that globalisation and westernisation have on the aesthetic taste and choices of clothing among Zulu-English speakers. Claudia Martinez Mullen was one of the five most prominent Masters Research students in all five campuses of UKZN. Prof. Jacobs (Head of Postgraduates studies) offered to transform her masters research into a PhD. She chose to reject the offer and received instead the maximum mark (Summa Cum Laude).  

Claudia Martinez Mullen spent a month as invited research scholar in the ‘Centre de Sociologie Européenne’ funded by Pierre Bourdieu in Paris, France, doing historical archive research and sharing seminars of discussion with scholars of the centre. She is currently social researcher of the Institute Gino Germani, UBA (Universidad de Buenos Aires) working in collaboration with Prof. Alberto Bialakowski, Prof. Nestor Correa and Prof. Silvia Lago Martinez. Finally, during 2016-2017, Martinez Mullen spent several months doing research at ‘DIE LINKE Central Committee’ (member of the Party of the European Left), Berlin, Germany; and at KSCM (Komunistická Strana C?ch a Moravy) in Usti Nad Labem, Karlovy Vary and Prague. In addition, she participated in discussions and seminars on ‘globalisation, politics and theory’ with Prof Jiri Subrt (Prague) and postgraduate students at Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic.             

Her publications are in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Czech. She has published numerous articles in books and also in academic journals. She was a member of the Editorial Committee of the Revista de Sociología (Journal of Sociology) ‘New Space’. Faculty of Social Sciences. University of Buenos Aires, 1995-2000. In addition she has published several popular articles in Newspapers: Página 12, El Clarín, Groccots News, and Daily News, and in Socialist and Communist journals in Buenos Aires, Paris, Prague and South Africa, for example in Communist University, Izwi Labasebenzi, and Umsebenzi,.

The most recent international interviews with Claudia Martinez Mullen are: 1) ‘Neoliberalismus vladne jizni Africe. Rozhovor s jihoafricku sociolozkow’. Claudii Martinezova Mullenova, profesorkou Rhodeske University. National newspaper: Prague: Halo Noviny. 9 November, 2016, pp 8; and, 2) ‘Levice se nesmí spojovat s nacionalistickými populisty’. (The Leftist should not be associated in politics with National Populism). Prague, Czech Republic: Leva Perspektiva. 1st August, 2017.

Martinez Mullen, C. (2018) Mam sen pochopit zivot za socialism v CSSR: Rozhovor Halo novin s Claudi Martinezovou Mullenovo, Komunistskou a profesorkou na vysoke skole v Jihoafricke republice. Interview: Ramon Blazko. Sobota. 15 Prosince 2018. Halo Strana 3.

Please note that articles, institutions, social researcher groups, etc., appearing in this profile have been translated into English so that anyone interested can understand the topics and language.


As a political-social activist Claudia Martinez Mullen has been involved in the working class movement for more than three decades. While in Argentina, she was vice-president of the FEDE (Student Federation of the Communist Party) and member of the central committee, leading the struggles and political education of members of the working class in several ‘villas miserias’ informal settlements. Alliances and group-work were formed with the participation of the CGT (Central Confederation of Labour). In South Africa, she participated as a member of the central committee of ‘Indaba Social Movement’ in KZN. In SMI and the Centre for Civil Society (CCS-UKZN – Former Director: Prof Patrick Bond) she collaborated in seminars, forums of discussion and political education in several communities (Umlazi, Chatsworth, KwaMashu and others) and at the University of KwaZulu-Natal through UCAF (University Community Activist Forum). She was the chairperson of the Forum. Finally, in Grahamstown she was the Chairperson of ‘Ubuntu Women and Community Forum’ (UWCF), focusing on services delivery, employment and political education.

She was/is member of several associations and research groups during her professional career and received some awards for excellence in professional performance.


  • Member of ISA (International Sociological Association), 2006 to present.
  • Member of SASA (South Africa Sociological Association). Since 2002 to present.
  • Senate representative – Internationalization Committee. 2014. Rhodes University.
  • Council member of ISA session on “Leisure time”, from 2010 to 2014.
  • Member of WISA (group of research and publication) Sociology department, UKZN, 2006-2010.
  • Convener of SASA, Conference in media, Culture and Communication 2008/ 2009.
  • Council member of SASA (South African Sociological Association) 2007/2008.
  • Member of ALAS (Asociación Latinoamericana de Sociología) 1992-1999.
  • Member of AAS (Asociación Argentina de Sociología) 1992-1999. 


  • Historical archive research made on the basis of nation-wide newspapers during the year 1973, about “El Devotazo: revolutionary resistance of political prisoners under Argentinean dictatorship”. Research Group: Research Institute Gino Germani. UBA.
  • “Juvenile Delinquency Project of Young Re-socialization”Institute Correctional “Luis Agote”, in collaboration with the Research Institute Cedes.
  • Social determinants on the Identification and Self-identificationof students of Sociology. Influence of Marxists and Functionalist theoretic approaches on such process of localization.Study group:The Subjective Construction of Knowledge. UBA, Buenos Aires.
  • Research about Educational Problems. “An exploratory study about students’ social and cultural problems in the school’s ambit”.Pro-Ethic program, in agreement with the Municipality of the Buenos Aires’ City.
  • “The Conceptualization and problematic of the ‘working class marginal mass’. A Marxist perspective”. Research Group under the direction of Prof. Emilio Cafassi.
  • “Different conceptualizations of Social Crisis from Marxist and Liberalist perspectives, and their concrete determinants in the actual operationof the Capitalist System in the Monopoly Phase”. Research Group under the direction of Prof. Emilio Cafassi.   
  • Research director of “Labour challenges experienced by the visually disabled”.Apanovi Foundation.
  • “The genesis of Devotazo. Toward a situation of double power. Politic Parties and Government”. Research Group of the Instituto Gino Germani, UBA. Buenos Aires.
  • “From Trelew to Devotazo. The prisoners’ liberation and the construction of popular power”. Research Group of the Instituto Gino Germani, UBA. Buenos Aires. 


  • Award/s for Social Master Research – full Master 100% dissertation.
  • Award for academic performance given by UKZN during 2008 – 2009.
  • Fulbright Scholarship for a PhD lab done between Moscow University (Russia) and ISA (the International Sociological Association). June 2008 Contact: Prof. Michael Burawoy, Berkley University.
  • Research scholarship Joao Avelange, 2008, FIFA- CIES (Centre International d'Etude du Sport) Palais DuPeyrou CH-2000 Neuchâtel, Switzerland.


  • Political Economy – Imperialism, Neo-liberalism, Marxism, Socialism and Communism, related to class consciousness and social class formations.
  • Alienation and freedom, related to working class restructuration.
  • Globalisation, War, Militarism and Migration crisis.
  • TNC, the criminal economy and the responses to/from labour.
  • Culture, aesthetic and leisure time’s consumption.


  • Trade Unions and Comparative Labour Movement
  • Sociology of Work
  • Globalisation and Labour: Imperialism, Militarism and War 
  • Economic Globalisation, Flexible Labour and human Trafficking
  • Research Social Methods and Epistemology
  • Class Consciousness and Social Classes in Contemporary Capitalism
  • Sociological Contemporary Theory
  • Cultural studies
  • Social Conflict


  • Sociology of Work – accumulation models (Taylorism, Fordism, Post-Fordism and Neo-Fordism).
  • Work and gender; work and class; work and leisure; work and generations.
  • Work, emotional and aesthetic labour and freedom.
  • Flexible labour, casualization of labour.
  • The informal economy, the informal sector.
  • Imperialism, Empire, and the advance of militarism and war in Africa.
  • Terrorism and new strategies of war.
  • Migration, migration quotas, economic, political migration; advance of xenophobia and violence.
  • The criminal economy: forced labour, human trafficking and smuggling.
  • Cultural practices, production and/or consumption (examples sport, clothing, food and  cultural taste, aesthetic practices, symbolic freedom, and so on)
  • New political order, liberal democracy and freedom.


Claudia Martinez Mullen (2018) ‘Workers migration crisis and proletarian internationalism’, in Eleventh International conference of the Tunisian-Mediterranean Association for Historical, Social and economic studies: Frontiers and Borders regions. Monastir, Tunisia November, 28-30.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2018) ‘African migration crisis and the responses of the French and Czech Communist Parties’. The 44th Theorico-Political conference. “Theory, Program, Strategy, and Tactics of the Communist Movement”. Prague, Czech Republic. 2-3 November.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2016). ‘Imagined Sub-Communities of Professional Football’s spectators in Argentina and South Africa’. International Conference on Humanities and Cultural Studies (ICHACS). Prague, Czech Republic, 06-10 November.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2015). ‘Knowledge generation across borders: Dialogue between South to South Co-Productive Researchers: Argentina-South Africa’. The 19th Annual IESA (International Education Association of South Africa) Conference. Port Elizabeth, South Africa, 19-21 August.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2014) ‘Human Trafficking in South Africa: Labour Force or Forced Labour’.  SASA Conference (South African Sociological Association), Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, Port Elizabeth, July.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2012) ‘Leisure and Popular Music in Argentina: Influences of Folklore and Tango in Politics and Culture through history’.  First ISA (International Sociological Association) Forum, University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, July-August.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2011) ‘Productive restructuration, labour and social domination: A Marxist approach’. The XXVIII Congress ALAS (Latin-American Sociological Association), University of Pernambuco, Recife, Brazil, September.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2011) Influence of Tango and Folkore in Argentina’s politics in the 1970s. The 16th Biennial International Conference of IASPM (International Association for the Study of Popular Music), Rhodes University, Grahamstown, June-July.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2010) ‘Football spectators and aesthetic choices in South Africa’. SASA Conference (South African Sociological Association), Fort Hare University, East London, South Africa, June-July.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2010) ‘Theory of leisure and its application in South Africa’. ISA Conference (international Sociological Association), Gothenburg University, Sweden, September 6-10.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2008) ‘Popular Culture and Identity of football spectators through history’. SASA Conference (South African Sociological Association), University of Stellenbosch, Cape Town, South Africa, July.  

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2007) ‘Influence of western clothing among Zulu-English speakers in Durban’. SASA Conference (South African Sociological Association), University of Potchefstroom, South Africa, July.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2007) ‘Social movement and people’s challenges in communities’. International Conference of Poverty, CCS (Centre for Civil Society), Durban, South Africa, July.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2006) ‘A Bourdieu’s’ analysis on aesthetics taste and popular culture’.  Conference of the International Sociological Association (ISA). The Convention Center (ICC), Durban, South Africa, July.

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2004) “A theoretical analysis on the concept of culture: The Birmingham School of thought”. Conference of Communication and Culture. KwaZulu-Natal. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, September. 

Claudia Martinez Mullen (2003) ‘Social, economic and cultural capital on clothing taste’. SASA Conference (South African Sociological Association). University of Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa, July.

Claudia Martinez (1999) ‘Rent of land and urban-territorial challenges experienced by the people living in Caballito, Capital Federal’. Conference of Sociology on‘Social problems on the Urban and Rural Area. Third Congress on Urban and Rural Area, Sociology Department, University of Buenos Aires, July.

Claudia Martinez (1999) ‘An exploration on the concept of consciousness in Marx and Hegel’. Conference of Philosophy and Letters, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Buenos Aires, August.

Claudia Martinez (1997) ‘Argentinean economic reconvention in the frame of Globalization’. Conference on ‘Economy, Technology and Politics’ - Second congress of Sociology, University of Buenos Aires, November.

Claudia Martinez (1997) ‘From Trelew to Devotazo’ Conference on‘Processes of confrontation from the 60’s to the 90’s. Revolution and Contra-revolution’. Second Conference of Sociology, University of Buenos Aires, November.

Claudia Martinez (1996) ‘The Devotazo’. On the National Argentinean Conference. The historic roots of the present. Third Conference of History. National University of Rosario, Rosario, Santa Fe, August.

Claudia Martinez (1995) ‘Latin America migration influences in the Italian La Boca neighborhood’.  First Conference on Urban Problems. Institute of researcher’s Gino Germani. Area of Urban Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Buenos Aires, February.


Claudia Martinez Mullen (discussant) Postgraduate Seminar, Johannesburg University, third Term: Sport and transformation, 10 August 2016. Kiran Odhav (NWU, Sociology) ‘Hegemony in Sport: Cricket and Soccer in South Africa and India’.  

Claudia Martinez Mullen - Keynote presenter at the 19th Annual IESA (International Education Association of South Africa) Conference, 19-21 August, 2015. Knowledge generation across borders. 

Claudia Martinez Mullen - Keynote presenter at SASA Conference (South African Sociological Association) about Football consumption and the World Cup, July 2010 at Fort Hare University.

Claudia Martinez Mullen - Keynote presenter in a seminar series hosted by the ‘Centre de Sociologie Européenne’.Paris, France, 2010.

Claudia Martinez Mullen – Seminars presenter at the Sociology Department, University of Moscow, Russia, June-July 2008.

Claudia Martinez Mullen - Presenter in the international PhD seminar held by the University of Moscow, Russia, in June 2008, with the collaboration of ISA (International Sociological Association) and the Fulbright Scholarship.

Claudia Martinez Mullen - Seminar in the Philosophy department about Aesthetic theory and comparative analysis between Pierre Bourdieu and Kant, 2006, UKZN, South Africa

Claudia Martinez Mullen - Introductory seminar on SPSS and Statistics, 2003, UKZN, South Africa.

Claudia Martinez Mullen - Seminar on Social Research Methods, 2001, Sociology Department, UKZN.

Claudia Martinez - Seminar on Bourdieu and his theory of Education, 1998, University of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Claudia Martinez - Seminar on “Das Capital” Karl Marx, 1997 – 1998, Universidad de Buenos Aires.

Claudia Martinez - Seminar on “Conceptualisation and challenges experienced by the so called ‘Working Class and the Proletariat’ in contemporary capitalism”, 1995-1997, Universidad de Buenos Aires.  


Martinez Mullen, C. & Mapadimeng, S. (2017). ‘Leisure and Consumption: Youth escapism in South Africa through illegal substances’. In: T. Dwyer, M. Gorshkov, I.Modi, Ch Li and S. Mapadimeng, (eds.) Handbook of the Sociology of Youth in BRICS Countries. Campinas, Brazil: World Scientific Publisher Co Pte Ltd.

Martinez Mullen, C. and Bialakowsky, A. (2015). Co-productive Research, Social Intellect and social Mobilisation in the South (South Africa-Argentina). In: South African Review of Sociology. (Forthcoming).

Martinez Mullen, C. (2013). ‘Leisure and Popular Music in Argentina: Influences of Folklore and Tango in Politics and Culture through history’. In: I. Modi (ed.) Mapping Leisure through the Ages. India. (Forthcoming)

Martinez Mullen, C. (2010). ‘The Influence of Global Sport Culture in South African Football’. In:  S. Mapadimeng, and S. Khan (eds.) Contemporary Social Issue in Africa: cases in Gaborone, Kampala and Durban. Pretoria: AISA (Africa Institute of South Africa).

Martinez Mullen, C. (2009). Socio-Cultural Practices of football Spectators in South Africa and Argentina. Neuchâtel, Switzerland: FIFA- CIES (Centre International d'Etude du Sport).

Martinez Mullen, C. (2007). ‘Global Cultural Consumption and Aesthetic Choices of Clothing within Durban’. In: R. Pattman & S. Khan (eds.) Undressing Durban. Durban: Madiba Publishers.

Martinez Mullen, C. (2005). Globalization and Consumption of material and symbolic goods by black African Zulu-English speakers in DMA. The case of Clothing and its power of symbolization within popular culture, Master Research Dissertation, Durban: University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Martinez, C. (1999). Michel Foucault and the surveillance of the Argentinean’ society by militarism and the Authoritarian Regime. Nuevo Espacio, Magazine of Sociology, Vol 32, (1) pp. 17-29. Buenos Aires: UBA, Basic Common Cycle.

Martinez, C. (1998). ‘Understanding guerrilla wars’ ideology: ERP (Ejercito Revolucionario del Pueblo) discourses under militar dictatorship. 1976-1982’. Revista El Ojo Mocho, 12, (2), 25-42.

Martinez, C. (1997). ‘From Trelew to Devotazo’. In I. Antognazzi & R. Ferrer (eds.) Argentina. Historical Roots of the Present. Group of work “To make the History. Rosario: National University of Rosario.

Martinez, C. (1997) ‘Des activistes argentins exilés en France: des discours marxistes révolutionnaires autour de Paris’. Une collaboration avec l'Institut Marxiste de Fancia. Revista El Ojo Mocho, Vol. 11, (1), pp. 113-136. (An special edition: Paris, Buenos Aires).

Martinez, C. (1996). ‘Labour problems in the visually disabled and job challenges’. Journal of Apanovi Foundation, Vol. 5, pp. 34-50.

Martinez, C. (1995). ‘Contribuições de Antonio Gramsci para a compreensão da economia política contemporânea’. Tempo Social. Revista de sociología da usp, Vol. 73, (2), pp. 12-21.

Martinez, C. (1994). ‘Student conflict in and outside the classroom:An exploratory study about students’ problems in the public school ambit’.Pro-Ethic program, in agreement with the Municipality of the Buenos Aires City. Encounter Foundation Journal, Vol. 17, (1), pp. 24-38.


Gumbo, Eugene (2018) “The successes and pitfalls of Trade Unions in South African Tertiary institutions: A case study of Nehawu’s 2017 strike at Rhodes University” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Ketse, Ayathandwa (2018) “An analysis of Social Science’s students’ perception/information at Rhodes University about Libya’s African migrant crisis” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Mortlock. Matthew (2018) “The extent to which Christian religious beliefs translate into the work environment in the Eastern Cape’s Edgars retail industry” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Ralph, Zizi (2018) “Clothing street vendors perceptions on the political and economic transition in Harare, Zimbabwe” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Bango, Yanda (2016) “Analysing the experiences of youth graduates from Ngangelizwe, Eastern Cape: A Freirean approach” (MA research dissertation in Sociology).

Dalikeni, Tawonga (2016) “Exploring perceptions on Aesthetics and emotional labour experienced by women working in two different retail clothing shops in Port Elizabeth and Grahamstown” (MA research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Van Blerk, Natasha (2016) “Child Sex Trafficking as a form of ‘Modern-Day’ Slavery and the General Awareness of the Topic in the Eastern Cape” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Domboka, Edward (2015) “The impact of unemployment on the daily basis survival of black women in (Ermelo) Mpumalanga” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Matshwele, Kesaobaka (2014) “Perceptions of the National Internship Program and a shift to Temporary Teaching by University of Botswana graduates” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Nene, Sinenhlanhla (2013) “The relationship between Bretton Woods Institutions and the South African democratic government in the implementation of the Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) policy. The perceptions about RDP and its implementation in Pietermaritzburg” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Nkoana, Nene (2013) “Critical analysis of casual labour in the fast-food industry: The case of KFC and Spur workers in the Limpopo Province” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Sihlali, Nokwanda (2013). “Do Western cultural practices influence black African female students at Rhodes? A case study of hair weaving” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Mazarura. Tendai (2013) “Precarious employment in a retail industry: Contract workers in Meltz Fourways, Johannesburg” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Maema, Marina (2013) “General Working Conditions in the Textile Industry in Lesotho: A Case Study of the China Garments Manufacturers Group” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Zvobgo, Tavonga (2012) “Critical conversations on the understanding of Grahamstown’s household heads formulation of freedom” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Comley, Dominic (2012) “A focus on rural-urban migration in Grahamstown with regards to employment and quality of life” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Majola, Ezekiel (2012) “The impact of flexible labour and the response of trade unions in the retail industry: A case study of Pick & Pay and Shoprite Supermarket in Grahamstown” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Bango, Yanda (2012) “The role that Rhodes University is playing in promoting critical thinking and social consciousness among its students” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Somdyala, Wandisile (2012) “Exploring the informal economy of Mthatha, the links that are established between migrants (Nigerian’s and Ghanaian’s) and locals (South African’s) a focused look at the interdependence within this sector of the economy” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Kajese, Johnmark (2012) “To what extent do local economic development (LED) strategies adopted by the Makana municipality in Grahamstown create different socio-economic conditions conducive to the creation of employment among the youth who live in the location?” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Nda. Becky (2011) “West African Migration and Integration in the Informal Sector of Mthatha: Comparative Analysis with South African Workers” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Gowar, Gray (2012) “Plugging the leaks and opening the taps in selected areas of Rhini” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).

Bidi, Andile (2011) “Rural-Urban labour migration, living conditions and its effects on the rural family” (Honours research dissertation in Industrial and Economic Sociology).




Last Modified: Thu, 11 Jul 2019 12:22:12 SAST