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  1. The Negative Relationship between Size and the Probability of Weekly Attendance in Churches in the United States

    Are people less likely to attend large churches? Using nationally representative data, I find a negative relationship between size and the probability of attendance for Conservative, Mainline, and black Protestants and for Catholics in parishes larger than 500 attenders. The addition of control variables does not change these patterns. These results support the theory that group cohesion lies at the heart of the size-participation relationship in churches.
  2. Digital Punishment's Tangled Web

    Americans love crime. The criminal justice system is fetishized in popular culture and news media. We watch the news and scour the Internet to assess our own moral compass, take cues from others' digressions, and bear witness to justice and punishment. Historically, we learned about crime through news media and fiction. The Internet has dramatically changed this landscape: for the first time, mug shots and jailhouse rosters are available with a click.

  3. When Change Doesn’t Matter: Racial Identity (In)consistency and Adolescent Well-being

    Law enforcement along the U.S.-Mexico border region has significantly changed since the 1970s. Currently, Latinas/os make up more than half of the agents who patrol the southern border region. The Texas Lower Rio Grande Valley, in particular, has transformed from a predominantly Anglo police establishment to one with a heavy presence of Mexican American agents within local and federal agencies.

  4. Religion as Bridging or Bonding Social Capital: Race, Religion, and Cross-racial Interaction for College Students

    Religion is the most segregated arena of American life, but its effect on collegiate diversity outcomes has been overlooked, despite the significance of both race and religion in many students’ lives. This study examines whether religious observance, religious worldview identification, and participation in a religious student organization are significantly related to cross-racial interaction (CRI), a form of bridging social capital, during college. The current study yielded largely positive relationships between general religiosity and CRI.

  5. Private Journals versus Public Blogs: The Impact of Peer Readership on Low-stakes Reflective Writing

    This article isolates and observes the impact of peer readership on low-stakes reflective writing assignments in two large Introduction to Sociology classes. Through a comparative content analysis of over 2,000 private reflective journal entries and semipublic reflective blog posts, I find that both practices produce distinct forms of reflection. I argue that these differences can be understood in terms of the risks that students take in their writing.

  6. Review Essays: Finding Meaning in a Rough Country

    Michael P. Young reviews Rough Country: How Texas Became America’s Most Powerful Bible-Belt State, by Robert Wuthnow.

  7. A Nation Divided: Science, Religion, and Public Opinion in the United States

    Elites often mobilize science and religion to support opposing positions on issues ranging from abortion to families to criminal justice. However, there is little research on the extent to which public preferences for scientific and religious understandings relate to public opinion about these and other controversies. The authors analyze how perspectives on science and religion map onto public attitudes about a wide range of social, political, and economic issues.

  8. Why Worry about Evolution? Boundaries, Practices, and Moral Salience in Sunni and Evangelical High Schools

    Previous work on conservative Protestant creationism fails to account for other creationists who are much less morally invested in opposition to evolution, raising the sociological question: What causes issues’ moral salience? Through ethnographic fieldwork in four creationist high schools in the New York City area (two Sunni Muslim and two conservative Protestant), I argue that evolution is more important to the Christian schools because it is dissonant with their key practices and boundaries.

  9. Gaps in White, Black, and Hispanic Violence

    Despite significant public, political, and media attention to the issue of criminal violence in the United States, we know surprisingly little about the trends in violent crime for different racial/ethnic groups in recent decades. For example, what are the disparities in homicide between whites, African Americans, and Hispanics? Have these disparities changed over the past 20 years? If so, why? This lack of knowledge is largely due to data limitations, as ethnic identifiers are rarely collected in many official crime statistics.

  10. Explaining the Gaps in White, Black, and Hispanic Violence since 1990: Accounting for Immigration, Incarceration, and Inequality

    While group differences in violence have long been a key focus of sociological inquiry, we know comparatively little about the trends in criminal violence for whites, blacks, and Hispanics in recent decades. Combining geocoded death records with multiple data sources to capture the socioeconomic, demographic, and legal context of 131 of the largest metropolitan areas in the United States, this article examines the trends in racial/ethnic inequality in homicide rates since 1990.