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Detoxifying the Liberal Democrats

Speaking of the LibDems, what are we to make of the party's about-turn on the bedroom tax? Whole-hearted penance or are more cynical motives at work? I'm sure readers won't be shocked if the truth lies closer to the latter pole than the former, but it begs the question. Show More Summary

Obedience, Authority, and Domination

By Peter Kaufman “Because I said so!” I’m sure that many of us have either uttered these words or have heard them spoken to us. We hear this phrase expressed in a host of relationships: parent-child, teacher-student, supervisor-employee, and police...

Marriage or the Baby Carriage

Differences in education level lead to dramatically different views on when to become a parent, according to new research. John Hopkins University sociologist Andrew Cherlin shows that millennial women with college educations are more likely to wait until they are married before they have children than women without a college degree. In an interview with […]

Conspicuous Pollution: Rural White Men Rollin’ Coal

Conspicuous consumption refers to the practice of ostentatiously displaying of high status objects.  Think very expensive purses and watches.  In the last few decades, as concern for the environment has become increasingly en vogue, it has become a marker of status to care for the earth. Show More Summary

David Ward and Hypocritical Bullshit

Is this what anti-Semitism really looks like? The big question is - if I lived in #Gaza would I fire a rocket? - probably yes— David Ward (@DavidWardMP) July 22, 2014 Ich bin ein #palestinian - the West must make up its mind - which side is it on?— David Ward (@DavidWardMP) July 22, 2014 "Ich bin ein Palestinian", a channeling of liberal hero JFK. Show More Summary

improving journal review times

Raj Chetty, Emmanuel Saez, and László Sándor have an NBER paper on an experiment to improve journal review times. The experiment? Pay reviewers: We evaluate policies to increase prosocial behavior using a field experiment with 1,500 referees at the Journal of Public Economics. We randomly assign referees to four groups: a control group with a […]

Children Seeking Refuge Have Hardened Americans Against Undocumented Immigrants

This year tens of thousands of Central American children, fleeing violence and poverty, have been arriving in the U.S. seeking refuge.  It’s a stunning story that has been covered widely in the media and Americans’ opinions about immigration have taken a hit. The Pew Research Center collected data regarding American leniency toward undocumented immigrants in February and […]

funding universities: is the state any better than private donors?

When I wrote about universities and the ethics of donations the other day, the takeaway was that we should 1) protect academic freedom and 2) avoid resource dependence but 3) not give donors political litmus tests. Then I threw in a line at the end about the biggest funder of all: the government. Of course, there’s a […]

indiana student killed in the ukraine

Last week, Indiana Ph.D. student Karlijn Keijzer was killed on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. The university news web site reports that she was an athlete, gifted science student, and an accomplished teacher. Her passing is a tragedy that has deeply touched the IU community. History will likely pin this senseless death, and the deaths of […]

War and Sociology

Sociology is a wonderful thing. As the discipline that busies itself with the analysis of social relations you can find it burrowing into everything. It's like the internet. If you can imagine it, sociology's already had a look. Yet some things tend to get looked at more than others. Show More Summary

Border Fences Make Unequal Neighbors

There is one similarity between the Israel/Gaza crisis and the U.S. unaccompanied child immigrant crisis: National borders enforcing social inequality. When unequal populations are separated, the disparity creates social pressure at the border. Show More Summary

Naming Variables

July 21, 2014 Posted by Jay Livingston Variable labels – not the sort of problem that should excite much debate. Still, it’s important to identify your variables as what they really are. If I’m comparing, say, New Yorkers with Clevelanders,...Show More Summary

If You’re Going to San Francisco…

Dear Readers! First, a bit of housekeeping. I’ve been officially recruited onto the Scatterplot blogging team. So, for the time being, substantive posts about sociology and related topics will likely be posted over there (e.g. this piece on clarifying the debate over replication in the social sciences). I’ll save this blog for more personal updates […]

Nannies and States

July 20, 2014 Posted by Jay Livingston Ross Douthat is puzzled. He seems to sense that a liberal policy might actually help, but his high conservative principles and morality keep him from taking that step. It’s a political version of Freudian repression – the conservative superego forcing tempting ideas to remain out of awareness. Show More Summary

Sunday Fun: The Flintstones take a Smoke Break

A blast from the past.  Fred and Barney let their wives do all the work, pull out a pack of Winston’s: Originally posted in 2008. Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the co-author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Dark Globe - Break My World

The disco's ringing out with melancholy beats tonight. Break My World is 10 years old, but its video has that haunting, contemporary quality that presents itself as timeless whenever thousands are perishing under a hail of bombs and shells.

Saturday Stat: Wait, WHO Dislikes Atheists?

Last month I posted data showing that, of all the things that might disqualify someone for public office, being an atheist is tops.  I wrote: “Prejudice against those who say there’s no god is stronger than ageism, homophobia, and sexism.” On average, Americans would rather vote for someone who admitted to smoking pot or had an extramarital […]

On the "Obsession" with Israel and Palestine

I think James Bloodsworth has been unfair locating the opposition to Israel's bombing and invasion of Gaza in the matrix of revolutionary identity politics. Yes, in the fractured universe of British radicalism the Israel/Palestine conflict...Show More Summary

Modern Politics, the Slave Economy, and Geological Time

Flashback Friday. I have borrowed the information and images below from Jeff Fecke at Alas A Blog.  His discussion, if you’re interested, is more in depth. There is a winding line of counties stretching from Louisiana to South Carolina, a set of states that largely voted for McCain in 2008, that went for Obama.  The […]

Collective Memory and the Danger of Forgetting

By Karen Sternheimer A few years ago I wrote about the importance of collective memories following the centennial coverage of the sinking of the Titanic. Collective memories are societal-level memories, shared by regularly told stories, and are often events we...

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