sociology for the public

Contexts Blog

Distinction Through Distancing

“Just recently martial arts has opened up, wearing masks and staying six feet away,” teenager Ryan told us. It was May 2020, the height of … Read More

Why did Motorville stay blue?

I first met Isaac in September of 2019. Though it was still early in the fall, the weather had already turned cold in his hometown … Read More

Letter to the Editors: Incarceration and Nonviolent Drug Offenses

To the Editors: In her essay, “The Drug War Turns 50,” Emily Campbell (2022) seriously misrepresents the situation when she … Read More

Public Practice and the Origins of Sociology: New Thoughts on an Old Issue

As sociology faculty nationwide counted down the days to winter break, heated debate again erupted on Academic Twitter (ahem, X). The point of contention? Praxis-oriented, … Read More

The Struggle for Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Memory

In the video below, USC Professor Hajar Yazdiha, author of The Struggle for the People’s King: How … Read More

Why are French authorities acknowledging racial profiling but doing nothing about it?

I’ve spent much of my adult life studying racism in France. As a Black woman and scholar, I’ve experienced the romanticized Paris of Black … Read More

A Good Time to not Have Children

Although a growing share of Americans say they do not intend to have children in the future, childlessness is still a relatively uncommon family … Read More

Better Together, or What Sociology’s History of Moral Debate Can Teach You

Few academic disciplines are as contentious as sociology. Heated disputes over ethical questions are common, and range from ethnographers’ alleged criminal complicity with their … Read More

Race, “That Ugly Word”

Recently, a Swedish friend asked what my latest book was about. Upon learning that it was a comparison of racial thinking in the United States … Read More

Q&A with Drs. Ashley Rondini and Jerry Saunders II

How did dark skin become such a deadly dermatological blind spot? Drs. Ashley Rondini and Jerry Saunders II are two of the co-authors of … Read More