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  1. The Rise of the Super-Rich: Power Resources, Taxes, Financial Markets, and the Dynamics of the Top 1 Percent, 1949 to 2008

    The income share of the super-rich in the United States has grown rapidly since the early 1980s after a period of postwar stability. What factors drove this change? In this study, we investigate the institutional, policy, and economic shifts that may explain rising income concentration. We use single-equation error correction models to estimate the long- and short-run effects of politics, policy, and economic factors on pretax top income shares between 1949 and 2008.

  2. Do Millionaires Move Across States to Avoid Taxes?

    The view that the rich are highly mobile has gained much political traction in recent years and has become a central argument in debates about whether there should be "millionaire taxes" on top-income earners. But a new study dispels the common myth about the propensity of millionaires in the United States to move from high to low tax states.

  3. Review Essays: Labor and Inequality: American Society After the Decline of Unions

    Sociologists of labor extoll pros and cons of what trade unions do or have done, but the consequences of labor’s near-disappearance are rarely mentioned.

  4. Why is There No Labor Party in the U.S.?

    The improbable rise of Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign presents an interesting question: why is Sanders, a self-proclaimed "democratic socialist," running as a Democrat? "In any other industrialized country, Sanders would likely be the standard-bearer for a labor or social democratic party," said McGill University sociologist Barry Eidlin, whose new study appeared in the June issue of the American Sociological Review. "But the U.S. famously lacks such a party."

  5. Union Decline in a Neoliberal Age: Globalization, Financialization, European Integration, and Union Density in 18 Affluent Democracies

    This paper examines the long-run effects of globalization, financialization, and European integration on union density in 18 affluent capitalist democracies between 1981 and 2010. After appropriate controls, imports from developing and imports from advanced countries and financialization negatively affect, and capital mobility positively affects, unionization. Immigration has no consistent effect on unionization. Also, European integration—measured as logged years of membership in the European Union (EU)—negatively affects unionization.

  6. Ramen Noodles Supplanting Cigarettes as Currency Among Prisoners

    Ramen noodles are supplanting the once popular cigarettes as a form of currency among state prisoners, but not in response to bans on tobacco products within prison systems, finds a new study. 

    Instead, study author Michael Gibson-Light, a doctoral candidate in the University of Arizona School of Sociology, found that inmates are trying to figure out ways to better feed themselves as certain prison services are being defunded. 

  7. Study Finds Changes to Retirement Savings System May Exacerbate Economic Inequality

    A shift to defined-contribution retirement plans, such as 401(k) plans, has led to an income and education gap in pension savings that could exacerbate future economic inequality, according to a study that was presented at the 111th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (ASA).

  8. Flexibility in the Absence of Bargaining Power: The Consequences for Work-Life Balance

    by Alex J Wood

    ‘I had to change hours. . . I felt really sick, it just hit me, it hit all of us.’ These are the words that Colin used to describe the painful reality of workplace temporal flexibility for many workers. And it is an experience which is becoming increasingly common.

  9. Going Underground: The Origins of Divergent Forms of Labor Parties in Recently Democratized Countries

    This study explores how different forms of civic solidarity emerge during authoritarian eras and how they evolve into diverse labor-based political institutions after transitions to democracy. I initially explore the modes of choices that radical intellectuals make—go underground or cooperate—in their responses to coercion and co-optation by authoritarian elites.

  10. Money Supply, Class Power, and Inflation: Monetarism Reassessed

    Recent sociological work shows that pro-market neoliberal policies across advanced capitalist countries are due to distributional struggle between classes in the 1970s and 1980s. The orthodox monetarist view, alternatively, sees neoliberal reform as a nonpolitical attempt to end the stagflation crisis of the 1970s. From this perspective, monetary and fiscal expansions brought high inflation, and central bank discipline and government austerity is the solution; but the recent trend of low inflation despite accelerating money growth and government spending contradicts this view.