November 2014 Issue • Volume 42 • Issue 8

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A Sociologist Tackles Pharmaceuticals:

The Epidemic of Sickness and Death from
Prescription Drugs

Donald W. Light, Rowan University, and 2013 recipient of ASA’s Distinguished Career Award for the Practice of Sociology

At the intersection of medical and economic sociology sits prescription drugs. Economically, the strange, government-protected markets for drugs lead to prices largely unrelated to either value or cost, though companies claim they reflect one or the other, or both at the same time. This sentence summarizes my first eight years of research on the corporate construction of costs and prices. That work demonstrated a constellation of markets infused with culture, false rhetorics, and the manipulation of evidence that misleads providers, payers, and patients.

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Contemporary Sociology and Borges' Total Library.

Gabriel Abend, New York University

Michael Sauder

Michael Sauder

Like Elias Canetti’s character Peter Kien, the new editor of Contemporary Sociology loves books. While Michael E. Sauder is not particularly interested in sinology, he is an avid and insightful reader of social science, a discerning reader of philosophy, and a passionate reader of fiction: from Canetti to Voltaire; from Borges to David Foster Wallace; from Kafka to Gaddis. Sauder has read extensively and widely, but what makes him a superb editor for Contemporary Sociology is the kind of reader he is: a most charitable and broadminded one.

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After Lean In:
Research Reflections on Gender Studies

Marianne Cooper, Stanford University

Marianne Cooper at the 2014 ASA Annual Meeting.

Marianne Cooper at the 2014 ASA Annual Meeting.

In the fall of 2011, I received an e-mail from Professor Shelley Correll, director of the Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University. Its subject line read: “An opportunity.” Shelley explained that Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook, was looking to hire someone to do research for her on women and work and to help translate the research into everyday language for a general audience. This seemed like an intriguing opportunity. I said yes, and a meeting was set up. 

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ASA Council Establishes Task Force for Liberal Learning and the Sociology Major: Volunteers Sought

The slim volume Liberal Learning and the Sociology Major,Updated is the Association’s primary statement regarding best practices for sociology curriculum and programs. It is also arguably the most cited curricular document in the discipline. It provides the core evaluation criteria used by members of the ASA Department Resources Group (DRG) when conducting external reviews of undergraduate sociology departments, and it is regularly sent to departments who contact ASA with questions about program development and expansion as well as courses and assessment. It is available online as a free PDF (www.asanet.org/documents/teaching/pdfs/
Lib_Learning_FINAL.pdf
), and print copies can be purchased through the ASA Bookstore.

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