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July 07, 2006

American Sociological Association Brings Luminaries to Annual Meeting in Montreal

Washington, DCThe American Sociological Association’s (ASA) 101st Annual Meeting, with the theme, "Great Divides: Transgressing Boundaries,"will convene August 11-14at the Palais des congrès de Montréal in Quèbec, Canada. In addition to the latest sociological studies, this year’s meeting boasts eminent speakers such as Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, feminist activist and author Gloria Steinem, and human rights activist Pierre Sané, UNESCO.

A wide range of social science topics will be the focus of the meeting’s more than 550 sessions. Dr. Ruth Westheimer, whose radio and television advice on sexual behavior challenged a boundary between the acceptable and unacceptable topics on broadcast airwaves, will speak at a thematic panel on changing sexual mores. In addition, the latest sociological research on Hurricane Katrina, immigration, family values, human rights, education, the sociology of food, religion, homosexuality, popular culture, and more promising research to educate and challenge attendees and members of the press.

The theme of the 101st ASA Annual Meeting is an intellectual platform to explore how the constructs of race, religion, gender, sexuality, class, and nation create serious inequalities, conflicts, and human suffering. In addressing the theme, ASA President Cynthia Fuchs Epstein (Graduate Center, City University of New York) said, “This intellectual project is integrated with the quest to better understand major social problems—war; hunger; the human rights of women, workers, and religious minorities; access to power; and the worldwide transmission of disease.

Following its established tradition of bringing renowned scholars and leaders to speak at the Annual Meeting, this year ASA brings three exciting sessions, including “Transgressing Sex Segregation: The Law, Social Science, and Social Policy.” This August 11 plenary session features U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg speaking on changes in the legal profession over the past 40 years. She will be joined by law professors Deborah Rhode of the Stanford Law School and Judith Resnik of Yale Law School. On August 14, Gloria Steinem, women’s rights activist, founder of Ms. magazine, and cofounder of the National Women’s Political Caucus, will address another plenary on “Transgressing Distinctions of Gender and Race” with sociologist Lawrence Bobo, Director of the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. Their session will focus on race and gender issues and the political sphere.

In addition to the hundreds of paper presentations, featured speakers, workshops, and poster sessions, the 2006 Annual Meeting will include author meets critic sessions, local tours, and other events on a variety of research and policy-related issues. Also highlighted are regional spotlights, which highlight research on the local community, such as “Cities, Space, and State Restructuring” and “Canadian Health Care in Practice.” The searchable and PDF version of the
preliminary program and up-to-date press releases are posted on the ASA website.  For a printed copy of the preliminary program, contact Johanna Olexy at

Media Opportunities at the Annual Meeting include:
  • Interviews with high profile sociologists
  • Releases of new research findings
  • Newsworthy topics and exciting presentations

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About the American Sociological Association
The American Sociological Association (, founded in 1905, is a non-profit membership association dedicated to serving sociologists in their work, advancing sociology as a science and profession, and promoting the contributions to and use of sociology by society.