American Sociological Association

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  1. The Public Library as Resistive Space in the Neoliberal City

    With reduced hours, decaying infrastructure, and precariously positioned staff, local public libraries provide much needed services in cities devastated by inequality and slashed safety nets. In this article, I draw on ethnographic research of a small public library in a diverse, mostly working class neighborhood in Queens, New York. I show that in addition to providing an alternative to the capitalist market by distributing resources according to people's needs, the library serves as a moral underground space, where middle‐class people bend rules to help struggling city residents.

  2. The Contemporary Defended Neighborhood: Maintaining Stability and Diversity through Processes of Community Defense

    This article extends Suttles’ (1972) theory of the defended neighborhood by applying the framework to a contemporary context and exploring the social processes that residents of a diverse community used to defend their neighborhood from change.

  3. A Recipe for Disaster: Framing Risk and Vulnerability in Slum Relocation Policies in Chennai, India

    This article investigates how governments use dramatic natural events such as disasters to justify potentially unpopular policy interventions. I use the case of the southern Indian city of Chennai to explore how different arms of the government have historically engaged with the question of slum tenure from the 1960s until the present moment. Using archival methods, I analyze policy documents to excavate how slums have been framed within the context of political and policy imperatives.

  4. Measuring High School Curricular Intensity over Three Decades

    This article presents a new measure of curricular intensity that is objective, parsimonious, clearly defined, replicable, and comparable over time for use by researchers interested in examining trends, causes, and outcomes of high school course taking.
  5. When Does Punishment End and Justice Begin?

    In Homeward: Life in the Year after Prison, Bruce Western critically and thoughtfully engages the empirical alongside the ethical in this qualitative study of reentry in the United States. This book is a major methodological departure from Western’s previous work focused on statistical analysis of large-scale data sets, something he acknowledges early...
  6. Confronting Race in American Criminal Justice Reform

    The contemporary American criminal justice system is neither rational nor just. Nor is it color-blind. Despite decades of declines in crime and much talk of policy reform, the criminal justice system remains an established feature of racial inequality in the United States.
  7. The Elusiveness of Inclusion in Elite Higher Education

    Since the late 1980s, lower-income, first-generation college students have been a focal point of scholars of higher education. With three decades of research now accumulated, we have good insight into the experiences and outcomes of students who, on average, enter college with academic, financial, and social challenges.
  8. “He Explained It to Me and I Also Did It Myself”: How Older Adults Get Support with Their Technology Uses

    Given that older adults constitute a highly heterogeneous group that engages with digital media in varying ways, there is likely to be large variation in technology support needs, something heretofore unaddressed in the literature. Drawing on in-depth qualitative interviews with a multinational sample of older adults, the authors explore the support needs of older adults for using digital media, including their perceptions of whether the support they receive meets their needs.
  9. Who Speaks for (and Feeds) the Community? Competing Definitions of “Community” in the Austin, TX, Urban Farm Debate

    Alternative food supporters claim that food produced outside the corporate system can improve the wellbeing of communities. A closer look at these claims raises the question: How are members of the alternative food movement defining “community” and who is being included in and excluded from these definitions? We draw from in‐depth interviews with (1) urban famers and their supporters and (2) neighborhood members of gentrifying East Austin to examine irreconcilable disputes on the process of rewriting Austin's urban farm code.

  10. Linked Lives in Double Jeopardy: Child Incarceration and Maternal Health at Midlife

    Parents’ relationships with their adult children play an important role in shaping mid and later life health. While these relationships are often sources of support, stressors in the lives of children can compromise parents’ health as they age. I consider that a child’s incarceration is also a stressor that could imperil parents’ health through social, emotional, and economic strains that parents may experience as a result.