Blog Profile / Sociological Images

Filed Under:Academics / Sociology
Posts on Regator:3160
Posts / Week:7.2
Archived Since:February 15, 2009

Blog Post Archive

Is it ethical to give your child “every advantage”?

Flashback Friday. Stiff competition for entrance to private preschools and kindergartens in Manhattan has created a test prep market for children under 5. The New York Times profiled Bright Kids NYC. The owner confesses that “the parents of the 120 children her staff tutored [in 2010] spent an average of $1,000 on test prep for their […]

On “voluntary conformism,” or how we use our freedom to fit in

Originally posted at Montclair Socioblog. “Freedom of opinion does not exist in America,” said DeTocqueville 250 years ago. He might have held the same view today. But how could a society that so values freedom and individualism be so demanding of conformity?  I had blogged about this in 2010 with references to old sitcoms, but for […]

Are Millennials having less sex? Or more? And what’s coming next?

Based on analyses of General Social Survey data, a well-designed and respected source of data about American life, members of the Millennial generation are acquiring about the same number of sexual partners as the Baby Boomers. ThisShow More Summary

Lonely Hearts: Estranged Fathers on Father’s Day

I work with one of the most heartbroken groups of people in the world: fathers whose adult children want nothing to do with them. While every day has its challenges, Father’s Day—with its parade of families and feel-good ads—makes it especially difficult for these Dads to avoid the feelings of shame, guilt and regret always […]

“Luxury” versus “discount” pricing and the meaning of the number 9

I discovered a nice gem of an insight this week in an article called The 11 Ways That Consumers Are Hopeless at Math: the symbolism of the number 9. We’re all familiar with the convention of pricing items one penny below a round number: $1.99 instead of $2.00, $39.99 instead of $40.00, etc. Psychologically, marketers know […]

2/3rds of sexual minorities now identify as bisexual, but it depends

Originally posted at Inequality by (Interior) Design. I’ve been following a couple different data sets that track the size of the LGB(T) population in the United States for a few years. There’s a good amount of evidence that all points in the same direction: those identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and possibly transgender too are […]

Mocking perfect gender performances (because the rule is to break rules)

Both men and women face a lot of pressure to masculine and feminine respectively. But, ironically, people who rigidly conform to rules about gender, those who enact perfect performances of masculinity or femininity, are often the butt of jokes. Many of us, for example, think the male body builder is kind of gross; we suspect […]

Trump’s election made people less private about anti-immigrant attitudes

Originally posted at Montclair SocioBlog. Did Donald Trump’s campaign and election cry havoc and unleash the dogs of racism? Last June, hauling out Sykes and Matza’s concept of “neutralization,” I argued that Trump’s constant denigration of “political correctness” allowed his supporters to neutralize norms against racism. Show More Summary

Why are we so committed to the coal miner?

Originally posted at There’s Research on That! With a group of coal miners standing behind him, President Donald Trump signed an executive order in his first 100 days reversing Obama-era climate change policies, claiming that he would bring back coal while putting miners to work. Yet, can or will coal mining jobs come back, and […]

City design and car ownership: Infrastructure needs for carlessness

Flashback Friday. The percent of carless households in any given city correlates very well with the percent of homes built before 1940. So what happened in the 40s? According to Left for LeDroit, it was suburbs: The suburban housing model was — and, for the most part, still is — based on several main principles, most significantly, […]

Sexism in ratings of intelligence across the life cycle

The average man thinks he’s smarter than the average woman. And women generally agree. It starts early. At the age of five, most girls and boys think that their own sex is the smartest, a finding consistent with the idea that people tend to think more highly of people like themselves. Around age six, though, right when […]

Why do Democrats lose so much? Organizational differences between the Parties

Originally posted at OrgTheory. Let us start with some basic data. First, the Democratic party has won the plurality or majority of the Presidential vote 6 out of 7 times since 1992. Yet, they won the Electoral College only 4 out of 7 seven times. Second, the Gallup polls shows that the Democratic party has […]

Countering class-based food stigma with a “hierarchy of food needs”

Flashback Friday.  Responding to critics who argue that poor people do not choose to eat healthy food because they’re ignorant or prefer unhealthy food, dietitian Ellyn Satter wrote a hierarchy of food needs. Based on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, it illustrates Satter’s ideas as to the elements of food that matter first, second, and so […]

Pitting homeless vets against Syrian refugees: A theme for online right-wing activism

When we see individuals holding cardboard signs and asking for spare change wearing camouflage, homelessness among veterans can seem like an epidemic. Recently, however, government efforts to reduce veteran homelessness have had great success. Show More Summary

Unbearable bodies: When nobody is good enough

Flashback Friday.  In a society that objectifies women, women learn that, to many others, they are their bodies. Because our bodies are the means by which others judge us, we place our bodies under deep and critical scrutiny. In such a world, all bodies are always potentially problematic. Women are too much of this or […]

Why the American Health Care Act is bad for women’s health

President Trump recently declared that Obamacare is “essentially dead” after the House of Representatives passed legislation to replace existing health care policy. While members of the Senate are uncertain about the future of the proposed American Health Care Act (AHCA) — which could ultimately result in as many as 24 million people losing their health […]

From our archives: Mother’s Day

For Mother’s Day, I wrote my third post on mothering for Money magazine about the divergence in income among other-sex couples once kids arrive, called the “motherhood penalty” and “fatherhood premium.” Here’s the whole list: The hidden penalty of motherhood — and what it costs us The invisible workload that drags women down The modern […]

Race, femininity, and benign nature in a vintage tobacco ad

Flashback Friday. In Race, Ethnicity, and Sexuality, Joane Nagel looks at how these characteristics are used to create new national identities and frame colonial expansion. In particular, White female sexuality, presented as modest and...Show More Summary

Changing colors and big fish: On situational and cultural influences on perception

How observant are you? Here’s a test! Pay careful attention, then scroll down:....... Perception is not neutral, it’s curated. If we paid attention to everything in our environments all the time, we’d be overwhelming with information. So, we learn to direct our attention to what seems important at the […]

“There’s way worse videos”: Today’s students on Rodney King

Originally posted at Gin & Tacos. If you want to feel old, teach. That movie quote is not wrong: You get older, the students stay the same age. Your cultural references are all dated, even when you think things are recent (ex., The Wire is already ancient history. You might as well reference the Marx […]

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