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  1. Study Investigates Whether Blind People Characterize Others by Race

    Most people who meet a new acquaintance, or merely pass someone on the street, need only a glance to categorize that person as a particular race. But, sociologist Asia Friedman wondered, what can we learn about that automatic visual processing from people who are unable to see?

    Friedman, an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Delaware, set out to explore that question by interviewing 25 individuals who are blind. She will present her findings in a study at the 110th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (ASA).

  2. The Link between Functional Limitations and Depressive Symptoms: The Explanatory Role of Self-conceptions

    Having more physical limitations predicts greater depressive symptoms. However, relatively few studies examine self-conceptions as potential explanations for this association. Using ordinary least squares regression on panel data collected in Miami-Dade County, Florida (2001 and 2004, N = 1,362), we examine the effect of functional limitations on five dimensions of the self: self-esteem, mastery, mattering, introspection, and emotional reliance.

  3. 2012 Presidential Address: Transforming Capitalism through Real Utopias

    This address explores a broad framework for thinking sociologically about emancipatory alternatives to dominant institutions and social structures, especially capitalism. The framework is grounded in two foundational propositions: (1) Many forms of human suffering and many deficits in human flourishing are the result of existing institutions and social structures. (2) Transforming existing institutions and social structures in the right way has the potential to substantially reduce human suffering and expand the possibilities for human flourishing.

  4. The Bourgeoisie Dream Factory

    Effectively teaching sociological theories to undergraduate students is challenging. Students often enroll in theory courses due to major requirements, not personal interest. Consequently, many students approach the study of theory with anxiety. This study examined the effectiveness of an experiential learning activity designed to teach Karl Marx’s theory of alienation. Based on pretest/posttest surveys, responses to open-ended questions, and observational data, students reported that the activity helped them gain a clearer understanding of Marx.

  5. What Is the Relation between Theory and Practice, and Did Marx Discuss Engineering Society?

    My impression of Marx’s understanding of theory and praxis is that the transition from capitalism to socialism is contingent on the historical circumstances at any given point in time. The logic of capital creates certain preconditions that set the stage for the transition, but the transition is by no means guaranteed to unfold, or unfold in a clearly predictable manner. One of the preconditions is the concentration of capital into the hands of few and the general tendency toward increasing relative poverty of workers.

  6. The Association between Education and Mortality for Adults with Intellectual Disability

    Journal of Health and Social Behavior, Volume 58, Issue 1, Page 70-85, March 2017.
  7. Habit and the Body: Lessons for Social Theories of Habit from the Experiences of People with Physical Disabilities

    Habitual action has been an important concept in sociological theory insofar as it allows for a conceptualization of action that does not rely on paradigmatic loyalty to a rational decision-making subject. One insight from theories of habit that is of particular importance for understanding how habit structures experience is the idea that habits are always habits in a world: we act in a material environment that is itself constitutive of action.

  8. Doing Diagnosis: Autism, Interaction Order, and the Use of Narrative in Clinical Talk

    This study, with an eye toward the social psychology of diagnosis more generally, is an investigation of how clinicians diagnose children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Responding to Hacking’s call for a Goffmanian mode of analysis to complement and balance the emphasis on large-scale transformations and discourses, we examine the narrative way in which clinicians provide evidence to support a diagnostic position.
  9. The Spillover of Genomic Testing Results in Families: Same Variant, Different Logics

    Journal of Health and Social Behavior, Volume 58, Issue 2, Page 166-180, June 2017.
  10. (Where) Is Functional Decline Isolating? Disordered Environments and the Onset of Disability

    The onset of disability is believed to undermine social connectedness and raise the risk of social isolation, yet spatial environments are seldom considered in this process. This study examines whether unruly home and neighborhood conditions intensify the association between disability onset and several dimensions of social connectedness. I incorporate longitudinal data from the National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project, which contains environmental evaluations conducted by trained observers (N = 1,558).