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  1. 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?
  2. 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.

  3. 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.
  4. Estimating Income Statistics from Grouped Data: Mean-constrained Integration over Brackets

    Researchers studying income inequality, economic segregation, and other subjects must often rely on grouped data—that is, data in which thousands or millions of observations have been reduced to counts of units by specified income brackets.
  5. Comment: The Inferential Information Criterion from a Bayesian Point of View

    As Michael Schultz notes in his very interesting paper (this volume, pp. 52–87), standard model selection criteria, such as the Akaike information criterion (AIC; Akaike 1974), the Bayesian information criterion (BIC; Schwarz 1978), and the minimum description length principle (MDL; Rissanen 1978), are purely empirical criteria in the sense that the score a model receives does not depend on how well the model coheres with background theory. This is unsatisfying because we would like our models to be theoretically plausible, not just empirically successful.
  6. The Problem of Underdetermination in Model Selection

    Conventional model selection evaluates models on their ability to represent data accurately, ignoring their dependence on theoretical and methodological assumptions. Drawing on the concept of underdetermination from the philosophy of science, the author argues that uncritical use of methodological assumptions can pose a problem for effective inference. By ignoring the plausibility of assumptions, existing techniques select models that are poor representations of theory and are thus suboptimal for inference.
  7. What’s Taking You So Long? Examining the Effects of Social Class on Completing a Bachelor’s Degree in Four Years

    Despite improved access in expanded postsecondary systems, the great majority of bachelor’s degree graduates are taking considerably longer than the allotted four years to complete their four-year degrees. Taking longer to finish one’s BA has become so pervasive in the United States that it has become the norm for official statistics released by the Department of Education to report graduation rates across a six-year window.
  8. “Personal Preference” as the New Racism: Gay Desire and Racial Cleansing in Cyberspace

    In this article, I examine how race impacts online interactions on one of the most popular online gay personal websites in the United States. Based on 15 in-depth interviews and an analysis of 100 profiles, I show that the filtering system on this website allows users to cleanse particular racial bodies from their viewing practices.

  9. Dress Codes and Racial Discrimination in Urban Nightclubs

    In recent years, sociologists and others have suggested that nightclub owners have used dress codes to covertly discriminate against African Americans and Latinos. We test this claim using experimental audit methods where matched pairs of African American, Latino, and white men attempt to enter urban nightclubs with dress codes in large metropolitan areas (N = 159). We find systematic evidence that African Americans are denied access to nightclubs more often than similarly appearing whites and (in some cases) Latinos attempting to enter the same nightclubs.
  10. Neighborhoods, Race, and the Twenty-first-century Housing Appraisal Industry

    The history of the U.S. housing market is bound up in systemic, explicit racism. However, little research has investigated whether racial inequality also persists in the contemporary appraisal industry and, if present, how it happens. The present article addresses this gap by centering the appraisal industry as a key housing market player in the reproduction of racial inequality.