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  1. Masters of the Mint

    John Stuart Mill once wrote, “there cannot, in short, be intrinsically a more insignificant thing, in the economy of society, than money” (1848:48). _Money Talks: Explaining How Money Really Works_ proves that Mill was not always correct in his assessments. In this engaging set of essays, an interdisciplinary group of authors illustrates just how varied money can be and how the different forms it takes are—contra Mill—of tremendous significance for social organization, governance, economic performance, and the formation and maintenance of social relationships.
  2. Women in the One Percent: Gender Dynamics in Top Income Positions

    A growing body of research documents the importance of studying households in the top one percent of U.S. income distribution because they control enormous resources. However, little is known about whose income—men’s or women’s—is primarily responsible for pushing households into the one percent and whether women have individual pathways to earning one percent status based on their income. Using the 1995 to 2016 Surveys of Consumer Finances, we analyze gender income patterns in the one percent.
  3. Adolescent Socioeconomic Status and Parent-Child Emotional Bonds: Reexamining Gender Differences in Mental Well-being during Young Adulthood

    Links between elevated mental well-being in adulthood and higher social and economic resources growing up are well established. However, the role of gender remains unclear, especially whether gender influences how social and economic resources interact to produce disparities in mental well-being across young adulthood. Drawing on nationally representative longitudinal data, we illuminate gender differences in mental well-being, finding that young adult mental health advantages based in adolescent socioeconomic status pivot on parent-child emotional bonds for young men only.
  4. The Origins of International Economic Disorder: A Study of United States International Monetary Policy from World War II to the Present

    Fred Block has written an outstanding book, a major contribution to modern sociological inquiry. Leapfrogging over contemporary excursions into number crunching and concept mongering, Block has planted his roots firmly in the tradition of thinkers like Joseph Schumpeter and Karl Polanyi. The result is an investigation into the effects that the international order, particularly the international monetary system, can have on domestic social organization.
  5. Educational Disparities in Adult Health: U.S. States as Institutional Actors on the Association

    Despite numerous studies on educational disparities in U.S. adult health, explanations for the disparities and their growth over time remain incomplete. The authors argue that this knowledge gap partly reflects an individualist paradigm in U.S. studies of educational disparities in health. These studies have focused largely on proximal explanations (e.g., individual behaviors) to the neglect of contextual explanations (e.g., economic policies). The authors draw on contextual theories of health disparities to illustrate how U.S.

  6. Review Essay: Public Engagement and the Influence Imperative

    These three books—Going Public: A Guide for Social Scientists, by Arlene Stein and Jessie Daniels; The Social Scientist’s Soapbox: Adventures in Writing Public Sociology, by Karen Sternheimer; and The Public Professor: How to Use Your Research to Change the World, by M. V. Lee Badgett—by three sociologists (Stein, Daniels, and Sternheimer) and an economist (Badgett) address the demand for guidance and support as academic sociologists respond to the disciplinary imperative to make our work more influential.
  7. Do Well-off Families Compensate for Low Cognitive Ability? Evidence on Social Inequality in Early Schooling from a Twin Study

    This article bridges the literature on educational inequality between and within families to test whether high–socioeconomic status (SES) families compensate for low cognitive ability in the transition to secondary education in Germany. The German educational system of early-ability tracking (at age 10) represents a stringent setting for the compensatory hypothesis. Overall, previous literature offers inconclusive findings.
  8. What Percentage of Americans Have Ever Had a Family Member Incarcerated?: Evidence from the Family History of Incarceration Survey (FamHIS)

    What percentage of Americans have ever had a family member incarcerated? To answer this question, we designed the Family History of Incarceration Survey (FamHIS). The survey was administered in the summer of 2018 by NORC at the University of Chicago using their AmeriSpeak Panel. It was funded by FWD.us, which released a separate report using the data. The data show that 45 percent of Americans have ever had an immediate family member incarcerated.
  9. Intergenerational Wealth Mobility and Racial Inequality

    The black-white gap in household wealth is large and well documented. Here, we visualize how this racial wealth gap persists across generations. Animating the flow of individuals between the relative wealth position of parents and their adult children, we show that the disadvantage of black families is a consequence both of wealth inequality in prior generations and race differences in the transmission of wealth positions across generations: Black children both have less wealthy parents on average and are far more likely to be downwardly mobile in household wealth.
  10. Basic Income and the Pitfalls of Randomization

    This essay evaluates the state of the debate around basic income, a controversial and much-discussed policy proposal. I explore its contested meaning and consider its potential impact. I provide a summary of the randomized guaranteed income experiments from the 1970s, emphasizing how experimental methods using scattered sets of isolated participants cannot capture the crucial social factors that help to explain changes in people’s patterns of work.