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The Family in Recession: Births & Divorces Down, Violence Up

I wrote this for The Conversation. Read the original here. Observers may be quick to declare social trends “good” or “bad” for families, but such conclusions are rarely justified. What’s good for one family – or group of families – may be bad for another. And within families, interests do not always align. Divorce is “bad” for […]

Emotional Labor, Status, and Stress

By Karen Sternheimer Virtually no job comes without stress. Whether it’s meeting the expectations and deadlines of coworkers, clients, or supervisors, nearly all work can at times be challenging. Sometimes the work itself isn’t as challenging as managing relationships with...

christakis’ query

Last year, Nicholas Christakis argued that the social sciences were stuck. Rather that fully embrace the massive tidal wave of theory and data from the biological and physical sciences, the social sciences are content to just redo the same analysis over and over. Christakis’ used the example of racial bias. How many social scientists would […]

Syriza and Us

'Radical Left Takes Power'. There's a headline not seen in my lifetime. Syriza's victory in yesterday's Greek elections is rightly being greeted with dismay, derision, and near panic by those who presume to know the needs of Greece better...Show More Summary

walk like a penguin

With the impending blizzard anticipated for the East Coast, now’s the time to review how to walk on snow and ice. Yesterday, while walking along a park in an effort to get some exercise, I had several moments of la-la-la – arghhhh! flail! flail! flail! while recovering my balance on innocuous-looking patches of ice-water. Don’t […]

A Sociology of Celebrity Sanctions

Bill Cosby is a household name, once associated with a long and illustrious career, now with an infamous string of sexual assault allegations dating as far back as 1965. After new rape charges arose in late 2014 and became the subject of pop-culture discussion, TVLand dropped The Cosby Show from its rerun schedule and Netflix postponed […]

Americans Are Fleeing Religion and Republicans Are To Blame

Over the past 40 years, Americans have become increasingly likely to deny an affiliation with a religion. The graph below shows that people with “no religious preference” rose from about 5% of the population in 1972 to about 20% today. Overall, however, Americans do not report a corresponding decline in the a belief in God, life after […]

there’s probably a lot more cheating with the patriots

So far, the Patriots have been nailed on two cheating scandals – deflation gate 2015 and the 2006 spying scandal. Each of these is interesting in its own right but there is one implication that few are willing to utter. The Patriots are probably cheating in more ways than we imagine. The intuition is simple. […]

Why Labour Should Adopt the Citizen's Income

I'm all for nicking good policies, and one Labour and the labour movement should half-inch is the citizen's income from the Green Party. Of course, the Greens don't own it, it has been knocking about for a good many years. But they are the only ones pushing it as a key plank of their commitments. Show More Summary

Patriots and Scoundrels

January 25, 2015 Posted by Jay Livingston Sunday, and no football. But we’ll always have Belichick and Brady. I’m not saying that the Patriots are out-and-out liars. But they are outliers. The advantage of an underinflated ball, like the eleven of the twelve footballs the Patriots used last Sunday, is that it’s easier to grip. Show More Summary

Just for Fun: The Folly of Two Data Points

Every year, at the first faculty meeting, representatives of the registrar tell us what percentage of the incoming class is [insert variable in which we are interested, such as American Indian, working class, international, etc].  They compare it to last year’s percentage.  This drives me crazy because they do so as if comparing the last […]

Women at the Top Find the View Depressing

Gender bias in the workplace may not be breaking news, but its negative impact on mental health among powerful women might surprise you. A new study highlighted in Fast Company magazine suggests that women in high-ranking positions experience increased symptoms of depression. Lead author, sociologist Tetyana Pudrovska, describes the unexpected findings that came out of […]

thai iced tea

A field recording of a Thai psychedlia band from DA+. 50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($1!!!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street!! 

Chart of the Week: We Have Less Control Over Our Reproductive Bodies Than We Think

This week the New York Times published an interactive that illustrates the likelihood of pregnancy despite contraceptive use. Risk is divvied up by method, for perfect and typical use, and added up over ten years. The results are a little terrifying (click to see larger or go here to explore): Somewhere around half of all pregnancies […]

Saturday Interview: Glyn Matthews

Glyn Matthews is a Socialist Party activist and former blogger from Cardiff. When he's not discharging parental responsibilities he can be found doing party work on the high street of the Welsh capital and relaxing with a few bouts of pro-wrestling. Show More Summary

help me! this is my hot mess in teaching social networks

Question for readers who teach networks: What software should I use for low tech undergrads? So far, I am having some real challenges… I have an undergrad class where the first major assignment is to download one’s Facebook network and analyze it. I have been using NetVizz, an app inside Facebook, to extract network data. […]

Ward Swingle (1927-2015)

January 23, 2015 Posted by Jay Livingston (Not sociology but, to borrow Chris Uggen ’s term, “self-indulgery.”) Ward Swingle died last week. A few weeks earlier, I had been listening to this video of Andras Schiff playing the Bach C-minor partita, and I heard him play a wrong note in the Sinfonia. Show More Summary

Saudi Arabia and the Economics of Hypocrisy

Paying close attention to politics you become immune to the dollops of lick spittle and cretinous behaviour that comes with it. Today, however, has not only taken the biscuit but dribbled great dollops of gob over it. Remember when the...Show More Summary

Twitter Tension?

Although some research emphasizes the negative impacts of social media on well-being, a recent Smithsonian article highlights a specific benefit: social media platforms allow individuals to connect across thousands of miles. Further, despite anecdotal evidence, social media usage does not actually result in higher stress for users. Show More Summary

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