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  1. Review Essays: The Sorry State of Civil Rights

    It has been more than half a century since Washington outlawed workplace discrimination. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 spawned a complex, unwieldy compliance system. An army of experts—diversity consultants, human resources professionals, government regulators, plaintiff attorneys, insurance underwriters, management attorneys, judges—has helped to develop, and justify, a host of “symbolic” workplace civil rights measures.
  2. Who are the “Illegals”? The Social Construction of Illegality in the United States

    Immigration scholars have increasingly questioned the idea that “illegality” is a fixed, inherent condition. Instead, the new consensus is that immigration laws produce “illegality.” But can “illegality” be socially constructed? When initially judging who is an “illegal immigrant,” common observers and even authorities typically do not rely on an individual’s documentation.
  3. Political Fit as a Component of Neighborhood Preference and Satisfaction

    We examine the role party identification plays in moderating people's perception of place. Do people rely on heuristics to gauge neighborhood partisan composition? If so, those estimates may influence their perception of fit and neighborhood satisfaction. We find that in the absence of concrete, detailed information, people make quick judgments. Republicans, compared to Democrats and non‐partisans, are more likely to develop impressions based on the specific location characteristics presented here.

  4. Mobile but Stuck: Multigenerational Neighborhood Decline and Housing Search Strategies for African Americans

    While many scholars have demonstrated that entrenched racial residential segregation perpetuates racial inequality, the causes of persistent racial segregation continue to be debated. This paper investigates how geographically and socioeconomically mobile African Americans approach the home‐buying process in the context of a segregated metropolitan region, by using qualitative interviews with working‐class to middle‐income African American aspiring homebuyers.

  5. Regulating Landlords: Unintended Consequences for Poor Tenants

    This paper explores “hidden” ways by which cities may inadvertently undermine access to decent, stable, affordable housing—especially for vulnerable renter households—through regulations that sanction landlords for tenant activities on their property.

  6. A Decomposition of Trends in Blacks’ and Whites’ Exposure to Other‐Race Neighbors, 2001–2011

    Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics and two U.S. decennial censuses, we describe trends in blacks’ and whites’ exposure to other‐race neighbors between 2001 and 2011 and then identify the proximate sources of these trends. Our results show that whites experienced an increase in their exposure to black and other minority neighbors and a concurrent decrease in same‐race neighbors. Blacks’ exposure to both black and white neighbors declined somewhat between 2001 and 2011, while their exposure to nonblack minority neighbors increased substantially.

  7. Review Essays: Ivory Tower Fantasies about Affirmative Actions

    In a provocative 2002 essay, political scientist Jennifer Hochschild asks: why has affirmative action been so central to the American culture wars, more so than wage discrimination, underfunded public schools, and a litany of other social issues that have far greater impact on more black Americans?1 And why have social scientists paid affirmative action so little empirical attention, in contrast to the deep philosophical and legal thinking on the topic?
  8. The Public Stigma of Mental Illness What Do We Think; What Do We Know; What Can We Prove?

    By the 1990s, sociology faced a frustrating paradox. Classic work on mental illness stigma and labeling theory reinforced that the “mark” of mental illness created prejudice and discrimination for individuals and family members. Yet that foundation, coupled with deinstitutionalization of mental health care, produced contradictory responses. Claims that stigma was dissipating were made, while others argued that intervention efforts were needed to reduce stigma.

  9. Seeing Disorder: Neighborhood Stigma and the Social Construction of “Broken Windows”

    This article reveals the grounds on which individuals form perceptions of disorder. Integrating ideas about implicit bias and statistical discrimination with a theoretical framework on neighborhood racial stigma, our empirical test brings together personal interviews, census data, police records, and systematic social observations situated within some 500 block groups in Chicago. Observed disorder predicts perceived disorder, but racial and economic context matter more.

  10. The Spatial Proximity and Connectivity Method for Measuring and Analyzing Residential Segregation

    In recent years, there has been increasing attention focused on the spatial dimensions of residential segregation—from the spatial arrangement of segregated neighborhoods to the geographic scale or relative size of segregated areas. However, the methods used to measure segregation do not incorporate features of the built environment, such as the road connectivity between locations or the physical barriers that divide groups. This paper introduces the spatial proximity and connectivity (SPC) method for measuring and analyzing segregation.