Contexts

understanding people in their social worlds

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Social analysis from a personal angle.

Compared to What?

Too often discussions lack historical context; Claude S. Fischer argues that honest debate depends on our ability to construct relative comparisons rooted in reality. Read More

Sexuality Has No Expiration Date

Contrary to popular conceptions, many people remain sexually active well into their golden years in spite of the decline of partner availability and overall health. Sexuality remains an important part of the lives of the elderly, though its expression may decrease or change over time. Read More

Making Sociology More Socially Useful

After I conducted my 1997 study of best selling sociology books, I concluded that sociologists shouldn’t attempt to publish best sellers but “intellectually and … Read More

Redefining Retirement

If married women’s movement into the workforce was the labor market story of the 20th century, the aging workforce and growing retired force will … Read More

Framing Race and Poverty

One thing I know is that it’s extremely important to discuss how race and poverty are framed in public policy discussions. How we situate social issues in the larger context of society says a lot about our commitment to change. Read More

Bringing Social Science to the White House

One thing I know is that the American people deserve a government that draws upon the best social science available when developing social policy. Read More

One Liberalism

When I talk about my recent book The Future of Liberalism, and especially when I talk to more conservative audiences, I’m frequently asked which liberalism … Read More

American Higher Ed Isn’t Doing the Job

One thing I know is the United States isn’t producing enough college graduates to compete in the global economy About 30 percent … Read More

Diversifying the College Campus

One thing I know is that race-neutral alternatives to affirmative action have not diversified college campuses. The latter half of the 1990s witnessed … Read More

The Movement and the Party

One thing I know is that political bents consist of two distinct elements—the movement and the party—and the relation between them. The movement consists … Read More