sociology for the public


Interviews with fascinating people with interesting stories to tell.

Keeping it in the Family

For a while when people asked what I did for work, I’d mumble that I’d gone into the family business. Then I took to calling … Read More

The Poetry of Politics

Last year, Katha Pollitt, the longtime columnist at The Nation, received the American Sociological Association’s award for Excellence in the Reporting of Social Issues. One … Read More

Occupy Aesthetics

In this interview, Kalle Lasn, founder and editor-in-chief of Adbusters magazine, discusses his magazine and the future of the Occupy movement. Read More

Reframing the Achievement Gap

In this interview, Pedro Noguera discusses his insights on the state of public and higher education in the United States. He reflects on how inequality, class, and race play a role in hindering the success in education of marginalized populations. Read More

The Politics of Broken Dreams

An interview with Marcy Westerling, a leader in organizing rural communities in the Pacific Northwest. Westerling talks about such topics as her activism, the shifting winds of American populism, and living with a terminal illness. Read More

A Feminist’s Work is Never Done

An interview with Joan Acker, professor emeritus at the University of Oregon. Acker's work has been on the cutting edge of feminist scholarship for more than 35 years. Acker talks about such topics as her theoretical training, welfare reform, feminist sociology, and her informal campaign to end football. Read More

Counting Sexual Violence in Congo

An interview with Tia Palermo, a professor of preventive medicine at Stony Brook University Medical Center. Palermo used population-based data to better understand the occurrence of sexual violence in Congo. Palermo talks about how the magnitude of sexual violence is higher than previous studies suggest and also offers insight on the geographic spread of such violence. Read More

A Life-and Death-in the Classroom

Monte Bute is many things: an admired sociology professor, a dedicated community activist, an author and blogger, and a friend and one-time board member of … Read More

The Wire goes to college

It’s been years since the last episode of The Wire, a crime drama set in Baltimore, Maryland, aired on HBO, but its dedicated fan base, … Read More

Stand Up Sociology

Humorist Dylan Brody weaves together personal, social, and political commentary in his writing and performances. Here he discusses television and political humor, the state of heroes today, and the transformative nature of storytelling. Read More