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  1. COVID-19 Resources for Sociologists

    Every day we face new challenges related to COVID-19. ASA wants to help sociologists navigate those challenges. We are offering several resources to help sociologists in their work during this period.

    For more sociological perspectives and insights, see ASA's Special Issue of Footnotes on COVID-19.

  2. Are Feminine Body Weight Norms Different for Black Students or in Black Schools? Girls’ Weight-Related Peer Acceptance across Racialized School Contexts

    Adolescent girls with overweight or obesity are less socially integrated than their thinner peers. We examine racial-ethnic differences in girls’ weight-related friendship patterns, especially noting Black–white distinctions given their different norms about the ideal feminine form. We also test whether schools with more Black students see diminished weight-related differences in peer integration for all girls and/or for Black girls.

  3. Transcending the Profession: Psychiatric Patients’ Experiences of Trust in Clinicians

    Classical medical sociological theory argues patients trust doctors in part because they are professionals. Yet in the past half-century, medicine has seen a crisis of trust as well as fundamental changes to the nature of professionalism. To probe the relationship between professionalism and trust today, we analyzed interviews with 50 psychiatric patients receiving care in diverse clinical settings. We found patients experience trust when they perceive clinicians transcending the formal bounds of professionalism.

  4. Beyond Net Worth: Racial Differences in Wealth Portfolios and Black–White Health Inequality across the Life Course

    A large body of research links wealth and health, but most previous work focuses on net worth. However, the assets and debts that comprise wealth likely relate to health in different and meaningful ways. Furthermore, racial differences in wealth portfolios may contribute to racial health gaps. Using longitudinal data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) and mixed effects growth curve models, we examined the associations between various wealth components and multiple health outcomes.

  5. Emotions and Medical Decision-Making

    Sociologists have written surprisingly little about the role emotions play in medical decision-making, largely ceding this terrain to psychologists who conceptualize emotional influences on decision-making in primarily cognitive and individualistic terms. In this article, I use ethnographic data gathered from parents and physicians caring for children with life-threatening conditions to illustrate how emotions enter the medical decision-making process in fundamentally interactional ways.
  6. Social Class, Diagnoses of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, and Child Well-Being

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is the most commonly diagnosed mental health disorder among U.S. children. Diagnosis can bring positives, like proper treatment, extra testing time, and social support, but may also trigger negatives, like stigmatization. Although rates of diagnosis are high across socioeconomic status (SES) groups, the balance of positive and negative consequences of diagnosis may differ by SES.

  7. Scientific Hegemony and the Field of Autism

    Autism is one of the twenty-first century’s most contested illnesses. Early controversies around vaccine harm have irrevocably structured the field of autism science. Despite incredible investment in genetic research on autism over the past 30 years, scientists have failed to identify a set of “genes for” autism, and genomic causality has become more complex.
  8. The 2020 ASA Annual Meeting in San Francisco Is Cancelled

    Update: While the 2020 ASA Annual Meeting in San Francisco has been cancelled, we welcome you to join an alternative virtual engagement event.

  9. A Call to Higher Education Administrators Regarding Student Educational Progress During COVID-19

    The COVID-19 global pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for higher education. Institutions are faced with difficult decisions about how best to continue serving their educational and research missions, while also protecting individual and public health. Institutions moved at exceptional speed to close their campuses and move all instruction online.

  10. Medical Authority under Siege: How Clinicians Transform Patient Resistance into Acceptance

    Over the past decades, professional medical authority has been transformed due to internal and external pressures, including weakened institutional support and patient-centered care. Today’s patients are more likely to resist treatment recommendations. We examine how patient resistance to treatment recommendations indexes the strength of contemporary professional authority. Using conversation analytic methods, we analyze 39 video recordings of patient-clinician encounters involving pediatric epilepsy patients in which parents resist recommended treatments.