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Greetings from ASA President Douglas S. Massey

Dear Colleagues:

This is an open letter of invitation for you to come to the 96th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (ASA). Whether you are committed to participate on the formal program or not, we have planned a special event this year and hope that newcomers as well as regular attendees will join us in sunny southern California. The 2001 meeting has been in production for two years in order to meet the scholarly, teaching, training, and practice needs of sociologists and aligned social scientists at every career stage. Please come and add your presence in paper sessions, workshops, discussion roundtables, plenary events, and town meetings organized around the important substantive areas and issues that animate sociology as a field.

In arriving at a theme for the 2001 meetings, I selected "Cities of the Future" to guide our sociological attention because, for the first time in human history, a majority of the world's people will live in cities. The future of humanity is fundamentally urban, and modes of social organization and settlement that have characterized human existence for millennia will gradually disappear over this century. We need to reflect on the meaning of urbanization for human societies and social relations, not just in wealthy industrial nations, but in those that are rapidly industrializing as well as those that lag behind. The plenaries, the thematic sessions, and many of the special sessions will draw attention to the implications of our global urban life. And, for the first time, in keeping with our proximity to Hollywood, the Annual Meeting will include a film, "Cities in Celluloid," made especially for the Association and this meeting.

The Annual Meeting is a marketplace of ideas, in all formats and types. Join with me, the 2001 Program Committee, and the ASA officers in the exciting sociological events in Anaheim, from August 18-21.

Douglas S. Massey, ASA President