Winter 2022 Announcements – Articles, Books, Conferences and Symposia

New Articles

Jack, Anthony Abraham, and Zennon Black. 2022. “Belonging and Boundaries at an Elite University.” Social Problems 18. DOI: 10.1093/socpro/spac051.

Liang, Yingjian. 2022. “Different Time Frames, Different Futures: How Disadvantaged Youth Project Realistic and Idealistic Futures.” Social Problems. DOI: 10.1093/socpro/spac053.

Mijs, Jonathan J.B. 2022. “Organizing a Weak Anti-prison Movement? Surrogate Representation and Political Pacification at a Nonprofit Prison Reentry Organization.” Race and Space (Research on Social Movements, Conflicts and Change) 46: 87–107.

Siciliano, Michael. 2022. “Effort in Absence: Technologically Mediated Aesthetic Experiences of the Culture Industries’ Routine Workers.” Ethnography. DOI: 10.1177/14661381221124514.

Siciliano, Michael. 2022. “How Gatekeeping Became Digital: Infrastructural Barriers to Participation in Conventional and Platformized Cultural Production.” International Journal of Cultural Policy. DOI: 10.1080/10286632.2022.2137154. van Stee, Elena G. 2022. “Privileged Dependence, Precarious Autonomy: Parent/Young Adult Relationships through the Lens of COVID‐19.” Journal of Marriage and Family. DOI: 10.1111/jomf.12895.

New Books

Carceral, K.C. and Michael Flaherty. 2021. The Cage of Days: Time and Temporal Experience in Prison. Columbia University Press.

Prisons operate according to the clockwork logic of our criminal justice system: we punish people by making them “serve” time. The Cage of Days combines the perspectives of K. C. Carceral, a formerly incarcerated convict criminologist, and Michael G. Flaherty, a sociologist who studies temporal experience. Drawing from Carceral’s field notes, his interviews with fellow inmates, and convict memoirs, this book reveals what time does to prisoners and what prisoners do to time.

Carceral and Flaherty consider the connection between the subjective dimensions of time and the existential circumstances of imprisonment. Convicts find that their experience of time has become deeply distorted by the rhythm and routines of prison and by how authorities ensure that an inmate’s time is under their control. They become obsessed with the passage of time and preoccupied with regaining temporal autonomy, creating elaborate strategies for modifying their perception of time. To escape the feeling that their lives lack forward momentum, prisoners devise distinctive ways to mark the passage of time, but these tactics can backfire by intensifying their awareness of temporality. Providing rich and nuanced analysis grounded in the distinctive voices of diverse prisoners, The Cage of Days examines how prisons regulate time and how prisoners resist the temporal regime.

K. C. Carceral (a pseudonym) was incarcerated for thirty-one years in twelve different prisons until his parole in 2013. He is the author of Behind a Convict’s Eyes: Doing Time in a Modern Prison (2004) and Prison, Inc.: A Convict Exposes Life Inside a Private Prison (2006)Michael G. Flaherty is professor of sociology at Eckerd College and the University of South Florida. He is the author of A Watched Pot: How We Experience Time (1999) and The Textures of Time: Agency and Temporal Experience (2011). He is a coeditor of Time Work: Studies of Temporal Agency (2020).

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Kotarba, Joseph. 2022. Music Across the Course of Life. Routledge.

This book illustrates how social meanings provided by music are experienced throughout the course of life. To this end, the author examines in depth the concepts of self, identity, socialization, and the life course itself.

Social scientists have traditionally focused on music experiences among different generations, one at a time, with an emphasis on young audiences. This book explores appreciation for and use of music as a dynamic process that does not begin when we enter adolescence, nor end when we become adults. It demonstrates the relationship between the experience of music and the experience of self as a fundamental feature of the more general relationship of the individual to society. Music completes the circle of life. The author bases his analysis on observations made through a variety of qualitative studies and methodologies, as well as his own music autobiography.

Clear and jargon free, this book is a timely application of key concepts from the everyday life sociologies for scholars and students in the sociology of music and culture and other related disciplines such as anthropology and ethnomusicology. It will be of interest for upper-division undergraduate and graduate courses in culture, music, symbolic interaction, social psychology, and qualitative research methods.

Joseph A. Kotarba is Professor of Sociology at Texas State University, U.S.A. where he directs the Music Across the Life Course Project. He also serves as Medical Sociologist and Ethnographer for the Institute for Translational Sciences at the University of Texas Medical Branch. He received the George Herbert Mead Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction; and the Society’s Charles Horton Cooley Award for Best Book in the Symbolic Interactionist Tradition for Baby Boomer Rock ‘n’ Roll Fans (Rowman & Littlefield, 2013); and the Society’s Helena Lopata Award for Excellence in Mentoring. He is currently studying the relationship between science, medicine, and music; the experience of music during the COVID-19 pandemic; and the culture of the translational science movement. He received his doctorate from the University of California, San Diego.

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Matlon, Jordanna. 2022. A Man among Other Men: The Crisis of Black Masculinity in Racial Capitalism. Cornell University Press.

A Man among Other Men examines competing constructions of modern manhood in the West African metropolis of Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Engaging the histories, representational repertoires, and performative identities of men in Abidjan and across the Black Atlantic, Jordanna Matlon shows how French colonial legacies and media tropes of Blackness act as powerful axes, rooting masculine identity and value within labor, consumerism, and commodification.

Through a broad chronological and transatlantic scope that culminates in a deep ethnography of the livelihoods and lifestyles of men in Abidjan’s informal economy, Matlon demonstrates how men’s subjectivities are formed in dialectical tension by and through hegemonic ideologies of race and patriarchy. A Man among Other Men provides a theoretically innovative, historically grounded, and empirically rich account of Black masculinity that illuminates the sustained power of imaginaries even as capitalism affords a deficit of material opportunities. Revealed is a story of Black abjection set against the anticipation of male privilege, a story of the long crisis of Black masculinity in racial capitalism.

Jordanna Matlon is Assistant Professor in the School of International Service at American University.

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Monahan, Torin. 2022. Crisis Vision: Race and the Cultural Production of Surveillance. Duke University Press.

In Crisis Vision, Torin Monahan explores how artists confront the racializing dimensions of contemporary surveillance. He focuses on artists ranging from Kai Wiedenhöfer, Paolo Cirio, and Hank Willis Thomas to Claudia Rankine and Dread Scott, who engage with what he calls crisis vision—the regimes of racializing surveillance that position black and brown bodies as targets for police and state violence. Many artists, Monahan contends, remain invested in frameworks that privilege transparency, universality, and individual responsibility in ways that often occlude racial difference. Other artists, however, disrupt crisis vision by confronting white supremacy and destabilizing hierarchies through the performance of opacity. Whether fostering a recognition of a shared responsibility and complicity for the violence of crisis vision or critiquing how vulnerable groups are constructed and treated globally, these artists emphasize ethical relations between strangers and ask viewers to question their own place within unjust social orders.

Torin Monahan is Professor of Communication at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, author of Surveillance in the Time of Insecurity, coauthor of SuperVision: An Introduction to the Surveillance Society, and coeditor of Surveillance Studies: A Reader.

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Xu, Bin. 2022. The Culture of Democracy: A Sociological Approach to Civil Society. Polity.

Against the bleak backdrop of pressing issues in today’s world, civil societies remain vibrant, animated by people’s belief that they should and can solve such issues and build a better society. Their imagination of a good society, their understanding of their engagement, and the ways they choose to act constitute the cultural aspect of civil society.

Central to this cultural aspect of civil society is the “culture of democracy,” including normative values, individual interpretations, and interaction norms pertaining to features of a democratic society, such as civility, independence, and solidarity. The culture of democracy varies in different contexts and faces challenges, but it shapes civic actions, alters political and social processes, and thus is the soul of modern civil societies.

The Culture of Democracy provides the first systematic survey of the cultural sociology of civil society and offers a committed global perspective. It shows that, as everyone is eager to have their voice heard, cultural sociology can serve as an “art of listening,” a thoroughly empirical approach that takes ideas, meanings, and opinions seriously, for people to contemplate significant theoretical and public issues.

Bin Xu is Associate Professor of Sociology at Emory University

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Warikoo, Natasha. 2022. Race at the Top: Asian Americans and Whites in Pursuit of the American Dream in Suburban Schools. University of Chicago Press.

An illuminating, in-depth look at competition in suburban high schools with growing numbers of Asian Americans, where white parents are determined to ensure that their children remain at the head of the class.

The American suburb conjures an image of picturesque privilege: manicured lawns, quiet streets, and—most important to parents—high-quality schools. These elite enclaves are also historically white, allowing many white Americans to safeguard their privileges by using public schools to help their children enter top colleges. That’s changing, however, as Asian American professionals increasingly move into wealthy suburban areas to give their kids that same leg up for their college applications and future careers.

As Natasha Warikoo shows in Race at the Top, white and Asian parents alike will do anything to help their children get to the top of the achievement pile. She takes us into the affluent suburban East Coast school she calls “Woodcrest High,” with a student body about one-half white and one-third Asian American. As increasing numbers of Woodcrest’s Asian American students earn star-pupil status, many whites feel displaced from the top of the academic hierarchy, and their frustrations grow. To maintain their children’s edge, some white parents complain to the school that schoolwork has become too rigorous. They also emphasize excellence in extracurriculars like sports and theater, which maintains their children’s advantage.

Warikoo reveals how, even when they are bested, white families in Woodcrest work to change the rules in their favor so they can remain the winners of the meritocracy game. Along the way, Warikoo explores urgent issues of racial and economic inequality that play out in affluent suburban American high schools. Caught in a race for power and privilege at the very top of society, what families in towns like Woodcrest fail to see is that everyone in their race is getting a medal—the children who actually lose are those living beyond their town’s boundaries.

Natasha Warikoo is professor of sociology at Tufts University. She is the author of, most recently,The Diversity Bargain, also published by the University of Chicago Press.

Conferences & Symposia

Junior Theorist Symposium

(Co-organizers : Wendy Y. Li and Jon Shaffer)

The 2023 Junior Theorists Symposium (JTS) will take place on Thursday, August 17th, 2023 in Philadelphia, PA (specific location TBA). JTS is a one-day mini-conference held immediately before ASA which features the theoretical work of graduate students, postdocs, and early career faculty.

Visit the Junior Theorists Symposium website to learn more.


SUBMISSION DEADLINE: March 1st, 11:59 PM Eastern Time

The 17th Junior Theorists Symposium (JTS) is now open to new submissions. The JTS is a conference featuring the work of emerging sociologists engaged in theoretical work, broadly defined. Sponsored in part by the Theory Section of the ASA, the conference has provided a platform for the work of early-career sociologists since 2005. We especially welcome submissions that broaden the practice of theory beyond its traditional themes, topics, and disciplinary function.

The symposium will be held as an in-person event on Thursday, August 17 prior to the 2023 ASA Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, PA.

It is our honor to announce that Claire Decoteau (University of Illinois-Chicago), Greta Krippner (University of Michigan), and Victor Ray (University of Iowa) will serve as discussants for this year’s symposium. Daniel Hirschman (Cornell University), winner of the 2022 Junior Theorist Award, will deliver a keynote address. Finally, the symposium will include an after-panel titled “Why Theorize?” This panel will seek to bring serious scholars, thinkers, and doers into conversation to explore convergences, tensions, and a range of possible responses to the question: why theorize?

We invite all ABD graduate students, recent PhDs, postdocs, and assistant professors who received their PhDs from 2019 onwards to submit up to a three-page précis (800– 1000 words). The précis should include the key theoretical contribution of the paper and a general outline of the argument.

Successful précis from last year’s symposium can be viewed here.

Visit the Junior Theorists Symposium website to learn more.

Please note that the précis must be for a paper that is not under review or forthcoming at a journal.

As in previous years, there is no pre-specified theme for the conference. Papers will be grouped into sessions based on emergent themes and discussants’ areas of interest and expertise. We invite submissions from all substantive areas of sociology, we especially encourage papers that are works-in-progress and would benefit from the discussions at JTS.

Please remove all identifying information from your précis and submit it via the Google form linked above. Wendy Li (University of Wisconsin-Madison) and Jon Shaffer (Johns Hopkins University) will review the anonymized submissions. You can also contact them at with any questions. By early April, we will extend 9 invitations to present at JTS 2023. Please plan to share a full paper by July 7, 2022.

*Presenters should plan to attend in-person, though this may change based on the Covid- 19 pandemic. If you have any issues uploading your document, please send a copy of your précis with all identifying information removed to Please include your name and affiliation (University and Department) in the body of the email.