Fall 2015 Events

Brown Bag with Esther Calzada

Fri, September 11, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Esther Calzada will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “Risk and Protective Factors for Academic and Mental Health Problems in Young Latino Children”.

Race and Ethnicity Meeting – Global Social Movements and Race

Fri, September 11, 2015 • 3:00 PM • CLA 1.302C
More details to come.

Brown Bag with Stephen Benard

Fri, September 18, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Stephen Benard will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “Revenge and Social Status in Groups”.

Ethnography Brown Bag: Hyun Jeong Ha – “What It Means to Be a ‘Second-Class Citizen’: Politics of Collective Affect that Binds ‘Us’”

Fri, September 18, 2015 • 1:00 PM • CLA 1.214F
Draft of dissertation chapter will be circulated one week in advance.

Brown Bag with David Pedulla

Fri, October 2, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
David Pedulla will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “Race, Gender, and Unemployment Scarring”.

Brown Bag with John Casterline

Fri, October 9, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
John Casterline will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “Fertility Desires and the Course of Fertility Decline in Africa”.

Ethnography Brown Bag: Marcos Perez – “Problem-Solving Networks, Popular Politics and the Trajectory of the Piquetero Movement”

Fri, October 9, 2015 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Draft of dissertation chapter will be circulated one week in advance.

Brown Bag with Donald Tomaskovic-Devey

Fri, October 16, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Donald Tomaskovic-Devey will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “The Organizational Production of National Earnings Inequalities, Germany 1995-2010”.

Brown Bag with Eric McDaniel

Fri, October 23, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
John Casterline will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “Minority Representation and Minority Health Outcomes”.

PHS Workshop – Bruno Frere

Thurs, October 29, 2015 • 1:00 PM • Location: TBA
“Bourdieusian Critical Sociology, French Pragmatism and Phenomenology”
Professor Frère proposes that we utilize French pragmatist sociology in lieu of Bourdieusian critical sociology. Focusing on French pragmatism’s phenomenological foundation, Frère argues that this approach provides a superior comprehensive model to understand social action and its justification. He suggests that the pragmatist notion of grammar is useful to express the normative macro-elements that motivate local actions and their justifications; phenomenology helps us understand those actions and justifications as fundamental ways of relating to the world that can contradict the lived situation.
Bruno Frère is Associate Professor at the University of Liege (Belgium) and at the Institut des Sciences Politiques in Paris, and Research Associate at the Fonds National de la Recherche Scientifique in Belgium. He received his PhD from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris. He has published on the political history of social movements and alternative economy in France, the new social movements, social theory in the second half of the 20th century, and critical theory. His books include Epistémologie de la Sociologie: Paradigmes pour le 21e siècle (2008), Le Nouvel Esprit Solidaire (2009), Résister au Quotidien (2013), and Le Tournant de la Théorie Critique (2015).

Sponsored by PHS (Power, History and Society).

PHS Lecture – Bruno Frere

Fri, October 30, 2015 • 12:00 PM • Location: TBA
“The Representation of Alternatives to Capitalism: The Solidarity Economy and the Problem of Power”
Professor Frère discusses the solidarity economy, a new social movement that includes activities such as community supported agriculture, fair trade, and local exchange trading. Using insights from pragmatic sociology and, particularly, the notion of grammar of justification, he asks which kind of formal political institution could speak in the name of all these initiatives and considers obstacles to the formation of an overarching political entity.
Bruno Frère is Associate Professor at the University of Liege (Belgium) and at the Institut des Sciences Politiques in Paris, and Research Associate at the Fonds National de la Recherche Scientifique in Belgium. He received his PhD from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris. He has published on the political history of social movements and alternative economy in France, the new social movements, social theory in the second half of the 20th century, and critical theory. His books include Epistémologie de la Sociologie: Paradigmes pour le 21e siècle (2008), Le Nouvel Esprit Solidaire (2009), Résister au Quotidien (2013), and Le Tournant de la Théorie Critique (2015).

Sponsored by PHS (Power, History and Society).

Brown Bag with Jennifer Van Hook

Fri, October 30, 2015 • 12:00 PM • SAC 2.302
Jennifer Van Hook will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar, topic TBA. Jennifer is a faculty member within the Population Research Institute and Department of Sociology and Criminology, Penn State.

Race and Ethnicity Meeting

Fri, October 30, 2015 • 3:00 PM • Location: TBA
More details to come.

Brown Bag with Youngjoo Cha

Fri, November 6, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Youngjoo Cha will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar, topic TBA. Youngjoo is a faculty member within the Department of Sociology, Indiana University.

An Insider’s Guide to Publishing: A Conversation with Eric Schwartz

Fri, November 6, 2015 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Eric Schwartz, the editorial director at Columbia University Press, will speak to the Graduate Fellows of the Ethnography Lab about publishing from an insider’s perspective. Schwartz will offer his tips and insights from years of experience working with university presses like Princeton, Cambridge and now Columbia. Possible topics include how to transition your dissertation into a book project, and how to write a prospectus. His talk will be specifically geared towards the challenges for ethnographers. This talk is closed to Urban Ethnography Lab Fellows, however Eric Schwartz will be giving a separate talk open to the department on the same day. More details to come.

Brown Bag with Bruce Western

Fri, November 13, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Bruce Wester will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar, topic TBA. Bruce is a faculty member within the Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy and Department of Sociology, Harvard University.

Ethnography Brown Bag: Emily Spangenberg – “Local Political Networks and Preceptions of Environmental Injustice”

Fri, November 13, 2015 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Draft of dissertation chapter will be circulated one week in advance.

Race and Ethnicity Meeting

Fri, November 13, 2015 • 3:00 PM • Location: TBA
More details to come.

Brown Bag with Catherine Cubbin

Fri, November 20, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Catherine Cubbin will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “Neighborhood Selection: Latest Findings from the Geographic Research on Wellbeing (GROW) Study”.

Brown Bag with Toni Falbo

Fri, December 4, 2015 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Toni Falbo will be presenting a Brown Bag seminar regarding “Recent Findings about Chinese Only Children”.

Race and Ethnography Meeting – Graduate Student Paper Workshop

Fri, December 4, 2015 • 3:00 PM • CLA 1.302C
More details to come.

Spring 2016 Events

Austin Symposium on Queer Methods

Fri, April 4, 2016 • 8:30am – 12:30pm • CLA 1.302B
More details forthcoming.
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

Fall 2014 Events

Brown Bag with Harel Shapira

Fri, December 5, 2014 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

PRC Brown Bag – Chandra Muller

Fri, December 5, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Chandra Muller –
Population Research Center and Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin

Hana Brown – “Racialized Conflicts and the Origins of Contemporary Welfare State Restrictions”

Mon, November 24, 2014 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302B
Hana Brown, Assistant Professor, Sociology, Wake Forest University
Abstract: In recent decades, U.S. anti-poverty programs have taken a punitive and paternalistic turn. Social scientists concur that racial dynamics underlie this transformation, but there is little consensus as to how racial divisions structure policy outcomes in post-civil rights America. This talk introduces a racialized conflict theory to explain how racial divisions affect welfare state development in the absence of de jure discrimination. Using paired-case comparisons from the 1996 welfare reforms, I show that states with large Black and Latino populations adopted restrictive welfare policies only when broader socio-political conflicts played out along racial lines. These conflicts activated racial resentment among voters, fractured political coalitions by race, and made racialized framings of poverty seem both logical and appealing. In this climate, restrictive welfare policies became a form of political currency that could be exchanged for votes at the ballot box. When the larger political atmosphere was not racialized, politicians played the race card in search of political gain, but their efforts fell flat, even in regions with long histories of contentious race relations and conservative racial attitudes. These findings challenge attitudinal, cultural, and political accounts of racial politics and provide new insights into the position of Latinos in contemporary racial landscape.

Alice Goffman – The Makings of “On the Run”

Fri, November 21, 2014 • 3:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Alice Goffman will give a talk on her book, On the Run.
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

Regina Baker – “Why Is the American South Poorer? A Multi-Level Analysis”

Fri, November 21, 2014 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Regina Baker, PhD candidate, Sociology, Duke University
Abstract: This study investigates the question of what explains the higher poverty in the South relative to the Non-South. Specifically, I examine the relative contributions of family/household demography, economic structure, race composition/heterogeneity, and power resources. Individual-level data come from the four most recent U.S. waves of the Luxembourg Income Study (LIS) (2000, 2004, 2007, 2010). The LIS sample of 734,134 individuals is nested in economic, political, and race data on U.S. states. I employ multiple analytic strategies (e.g. multi-level linear probability models and non-linear variance decomposition) to examine measures of relative and anchored poverty. I also examine alternative measures of the South (i.e. U.S. Census-defined South and the former Confederate South). Results suggest power resources and economic structure are driving factors in explaining the higher poverty in the South. This study highlights the meaningful role of political and economic contexts in furthering our understanding of regional poverty disparities. It also underscores the importance of place characteristics in shaping individual outcomes and broader patterns of inequality.

Adrian Favell – “London as Eurocity: European Migration and Economic Consequences of Britain’s EU Membership”

Wed, November 19, 2014 • 12:30 PM • CLA 1.302D
Adrian Favell, professor of Sociology at Sciences Po in Paris, France, will speak on “London as Eurocity: European Migration and Economic Consequences of Britain’s EU Membership.”
Co-sponsored by the European Union, the EU Center of Excellence, the Department of Government, and the Department Sociology Power, History and Society (PHS) Network.

Stacy Torres – “Where Everybody May Not Know Your Name: The Importance of Elastic Ties”

Tue, November 18, 2014 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302B
Stacy Torres, PhD candidate, Sociology, New York University
Abstract: Drawing on five years of ethnographic fieldwork among older adults in a gentrified New York City neighborhood, this article presents empirical data that challenge standard survey measures of social isolation and push our understanding of social ties beyond weak and strong by analyzing relationships that defy binary classification. By measures like the GSS “important matters” question, this study’s participants appear isolated and without social support. When questioned, they minimize neighborhood relationships outside close friends and family. But ethnographic observations of their social interactions with neighbors reveal the presence of “elastic ties”—relations in which they spend hours each day and share intimate details of their lives with people that they nonetheless do not consider what the GSS calls “confidants.” These findings show how people’s accounts of their social ties may not accurately reflect the character and structure of their networks. Furthermore, they demonstrate how a single social tie can vary between strong and weak depending on the social situation. This article also contributes to sociological understandings of network transformation in old age by conceptualizing a type of relationship that allows elders and other marginal groups to connect and secure informal support while preserving their autonomy.

Jacinto Cuvi – “The Peddlers’ Aristocracy: The Disabled, the Law, and Street Markets in Sao Paulo”

Fri, November 14, 2014 • 2:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Brown bag series: Dissertation chapter, “The Peddlers’ Aristocracy: The Disabled, the Law, and Street Markets in Sao Paulo” by Jacinto Cuvi.
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

Rene Flores – “Do Anti-immigrant Laws Shape Public Sentiment?: A Study of Arizona’s SB 1070 Using Twitter Data”

Fri, November 14, 2014 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Rene Flores, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Scholar in Health Policy Research, School of Public Health, University of Michigan
Abstract: In 2010, Arizona approved SB 1070, a controversial law that required local authorities to verify the documentation of individuals suspected of being undocumented and made it a crime to transport, harbor, or conceal unauthorized immigrants. Migration scholars have theorized that punitive measures like SB 1070 not only reflect the hardening of public opinion about immigration, but could also negatively affect people’s sentiments towards immigrants. However, such contention has not been assessed systematically. Using sentiment analysis and a difference-in-difference estimation technique to analyze more than 250,000 tweets published in Arizona and Nevada in 2010, I find that the implementation of SB 1070 had a significant negative impact on the sentiment of messages regarding immigrants posted by Twitter users in Arizona. Further, though the bill’s supporters argued that the law only targeted unauthorized immigrants, I find that the law also negatively shaped public sentiment towards Mexicans and, more generally, towards Hispanics. In contrast, the bill did not affect public sentiment towards Asian immigrants or African-Americans. However, these changes in public sentiment were not caused by changing attitudes toward immigrants but by mobilizing users who were already critical of immigrants and motivating a new group of users to begin posting messages about immigrants.

Sarah Brayne – “Stratified Surveillance: Policing in the Age of Big Data”

Tue, November 11, 2014 • 12:00 PM • CLA 1.302B
Sarah Brayne, PhD candidate, Sociology, Princeton University
Abstract: In the wake of 9/11, federal agencies provided considerable funding to state and local law enforcement agencies to collect, analyze, share and deploy a wide range of new data. Increasingly, local law enforcement agencies have recognized these data could be useful for their own quotidian surveillance. The rise of “big data” raises a host of sociological questions about the implications for surveillance and inequality. In my research, I analyze the use of big data within the Los Angeles Police Department to address two key research questions: 1) How does the adoption of big data analytics transform police surveillance? 2) What are the implications of new surveillance practices for social inequalities?

PRC Brown Bag – John Schulenberg

Fri, November 7, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
John Schulenberg –
Population Studies Center and Department of Psychology, The University of Michigan

PRC Brown Bag – Greg Duncan

Fri, October 31, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Greg Duncan –
School of Education, University of California, Irvine

Ethnography Reading Group

Fri, October 31, 2014 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

Conversation: “Patrolling the Border: Militias, Police, and a Region’s Most Vulnerable”

Tue, October 28, 2014 • 4:00 PM • 2nd Floor Conference Room, Benson Latin American Collection, SRH Unit 1
The last several years have seen a dramatic increase in the proliferation of militias and vigilante culture in the United States. At the same time, the use of racial profiling and unnecessary violence among law enforcement officers are on the rise. The U.S.–Mexico border, one of the longest meeting points between a developed country and a developing one, has recently become the center of a humanitarian crisis. In response, the U.S. government has expanded resources spent on patrolling the border, increasing the number of law enforcement officials for surveillance and detention of undocumented immigrants. But the border has also attracted private militias such as the Minutemen, who seek to stop this immigration. Professors Shapira and Alvarez seek to understand the interplay of these two phenomena that lie behind the dynamics of border policing. In this conversation, Assistant Professor of Sociology Harel Shapira and Assistant Professor of Mexican American and Latino/a Studies C.J. Alvarez will explore the following:

· How much do the ideologies and strategies used by law enforcement have in common with those used by anti-immigration militias such as the Minutemen?
· How do these two forces interact with each other?
· Does border policing equate immigration with crime?
· What perception do both groups have of the causes of immigration?

For more information, contact Paloma Diaz:

Daniel Ritter – “The Iron Cage of Liberalism”

Mon, October 27, 2014 • 12:30 PM • CLA 1.302E
Why do some nonviolent revolutionary movements manage to oust authoritarian leaders while similar campaigns elsewhere are brutally crushed? To answer the question, this talk considers evidence from the Middle East and North Africa to argue that international relations may be the key to understanding successful politics from below. Daniel Ritter is Assistant Professor of Politics and International Relations at the University of Nottingham (UK). He received his PhD in Sociology at The University of Texas at Austin in 2010. His book, The Iron Cage of Liberalism: International Politics and Unarmed Revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa, will be published later this year by Oxford University Press. This event is sponsored by the Power, History, and Society Network (PHS) in the Department of Sociology. PHS is a faculty-student network dedicated to furthering discussion and collaboration in the fields of political, historical and comparative sociology.

PRC Brown Bag – Giuseppina Valle Holway

Fri, October 24, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
Giuseppina Valle Holway –
Population Research Center, The University of Texas at Austin

Kareem Khubchandani – “Terrifying Performances: Post-9/11 Misrecognition in Bollywood’s Diaspora”

Fri, October 24, 2014 • 3:00 PM • CLA 3.106
Kareem Khubchandani, Embrey Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow, Center for Women’s and Gender Studies, UT Austin.
Sponsored by the Race and Ethnicity Group.

PHS Panel on Changing Methods, with Drs Michael Young, Néstor Rodríguez and Sheldon Ekland-Olson

Fri, October 24, 2014 • 3:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Have you wondered how changing methods changes how you approach research and writing? Are you interested in how to change methodological tracks after you’ve completed graduate school? Please join PHS on October 24, 3:00 pm – 4:15 pm in the Ethnography Lab as we have organized a panel of some of our very own faculty who have used differing methodologies within their careers. Michael Young, Néstor Rodríguez and Sheldon Ekland-Olson will offer their insights into how changing methods changed how they approach the research process, ranging from the way questions are asked and answered to how to frame the findings in publications.
Sponsored by Power, History and Society.

Talk with Dennis Rodgers

Mon, October 20, 2014 • 12:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Talk on gangs in Latin America with Dennis Rodgers with conversation to follow.
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

PRC Brown Bag – Catherine Cubbin

Fri, October 17, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
“The Geographic Research on Wellbeing (GROW) Study: Design & Methodology, Lessons Learned, & Preliminary Results”
Catherine Cubbin –
Population Research Center and Social Work, The University of Texas at Austin

Terrence Hill – “Religious Attendance and the Mobility Trajectories of Older Mexican Americans”

Fri, October 17, 2014 • 1:30 PM • CLA 2.622
Dr Terrence Hill, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Arizona

PRC Brown Bag – Kenneth Land

Fri, October 10, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
“Fifty Years After the Social Indicators Movement: Has The Promise Been Fulfilled? What Needs To Be On The Agenda Now?”
Kenneth Land –
Sociology, Duke University

Understanding the R1 Sociology Job Market

Fri, October 10, 2014 • 3:00 PM • CLA 1.302D
Panel: Professors Ken-Hou Lin and Harel Shapira
Reading: Bauldry, Shawn. 2013. “Trends in the Research Productivity of Newly Hired Assistant Professors at Research Departments from 2007-2012.” The American Sociologist 44:282-291.
Abstract: Has the sociology job market for assistant professors at research universities become more competitive in recent years? One approach to addressing this question is to consider the research productivity of new hires. This study reports on trends in research productivity and the proportion of hires that are ABDs from 2007 to 2012 using data collected from the CVs of 334 assistant professors employed at the top 98 sociology departments. The analysis reveals a substantial increase in the median number of publications, median number of peer-reviewed publications, and the median number of first- or sole-authored peer-reviewed publications over the past 6 years among newly hired professors. This is in part due to a decrease in the proportion of assistant professors hired out of graduate school (i.e., ABDs) and the fact that ABDs have fewer publications on average than non-ABDs. The article concludes with a consideration of the mechanisms that might underlie these trends and notes important limitations concerning selectivity that pertain to the analysis.

PRC Brown Bag – Megan Sweeney

Fri, October 3, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
“Gender, Class, and Contraception in Comparative Context: The Perplexing Links between Sterilization and Disadvantage?”
Megan Sweeney –
Population Research Center and Department of Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin

NSF Application Workshop

Fri, October 3, 2014 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

PRC Brown Bag – Robert Crosnoe

Fri, September 26, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
“The Short- and Long-Term Inequality of Good Looks in High School”
Robert Crosnoe –
Population Research Center and Department of Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin

Power, History and Society First Meeting

Thu, September 25, 2014 • 5:30 PM • CLA 1.302D

Department of Sociology 100th Anniversary

Fri, September 19, 2014 • 3:00 PM • Etter-Harbin Alumni Center
In celebration of its 100th anniversary at The University of Texas at Austin, the Department of Sociology is hosting a special event featuring Dr Teresa A Sullivan. Dr Sullivan is the eighth president of the University of Virginia and former UT Austin distinguished professor in Sociology and executive vice chancellor for academic affairs for the University of Texas System.
Friday, September 19, 2014
3:00 pm. Keynote: Dr Teresa Sullivan
4:30 pm. Reception (by invitation)
Etter-Harbin Alumni Center
2110 San Jacinto Blvd, Austin, TX 78712

Peter Ward – Intensive Case Study Methodology: An Oscar Lewis “Lite” Approach

Fri, September 19, 2014 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Sponsored by the Urban Ethnography Lab.

Patricia Richards – “Sexual Harassment in the Field”

Fri, September 19, 2014 • 9:00 AM • CLA 3.214F
Dr Patricia Richards, University of Georgia

Gloria Gonzalez-Lopez – Self-Care, Well-Being and Academic Life

Tue, September 16, 2014 • 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM • CLA 3.214F
Dr. Gloria Gonzalez-Lopez is a Gender and Sexuality scholar working with Mexican and Mexican American communities, with an emphasis on social inequality. She is a prolific author and serves as the Minority Liaison Officer for the Sociology Department at UT Austin. Based on her own life and professional experiences, she has shared insights on maintaining a healthy and balanced life with graduate students and staff in the first of a series of conversations on work/life balance. Graduate students who have participated in these conversations have found these exchanges to be productive and beneficial. Dr. Gonzalez-Lopez, who joined UT Austin in 2002 as an Assistant Professor, suggests that caring about yourself and others lays the foundation for building good health and community. She walks every day in order to maintain balance and claims staying healthy and being able to be a happy Sociologist is not impossible.

PRC Brown Bag – Dean Spears

Fri, September 12, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302E
“Sanitation and population density: A double threat for early-life health, nutrition, and mortality in India.” Dean Spears – RICE – Research Institute for Compassionate Economics

Amanda Stevenson – Twitter Analysis of HB2 and the Wendy Davis Filibuster

Wed, September 10, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM • CLA 3.214F
Amanda Stevenson will discuss the work behind her recent paper in Contraception about the Twitter response to Texas HB2 and Wendy Davis’ filibuster of the bill. Texas HB2 is an omnibus abortion restriction bill which ushered in a decline in Texas abortion clinics from 41 at the time of the bill’s introduction to 19 today. Parts of the bill are currently enjoined but pending the outcome oflitigation, Texas could soon have only eight clinics. The public response to the bill was strong, with thousands of Texans marching on the capitol day after day and with a tremendous response on social media, especially Twitter. Amanda will describe tweet, user, and social network data procurement, including a brief overview of the Twitter API. She will also discuss her methods for locating Twitter users and classifying tweets by abortion sentiment. Findings will include classification of tweets by abortion sentiment, spatial-temporal description of the discussion, and preliminary conclusions from her analyses of the social network processes generating the dramatic response to the bill.

Urban Ethnography Lab: Summer Research Updates

Fri, September 5, 2014 • 1:00 PM • CLA 3.214F
Presentations by recipients of summer fellowships, including Caity Collins, Katie Jensen, Robyn Keith, Megan Tobias Neely, and Vivian Shaw.

PRC Brown Bag – Mark Hayward

Fri, September 5, 2014 • 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM • CLA 1.302B
“Fall 2014 Brown Bag Kickoff”
Mark Hayward –
Population Research Center and Department of Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin

Spring 2014 Events

May 2, 1 pm. CLA 3.214F. Ethnography Brown Bag Series: Working Paper by Jessica Dunning-Lozano. Working Title: “How Zero Tolerance Schools Discipline Parents and Families.”

April 25, 1 pm. CLA 3.214F. Brown Bag Series: Dissertation Proposal. Proposal by Katie Sobering.

April 23, 12:30 pm. CLA 1.302B. The Power, History and Society Network (PHS) – Theda Skocpol. The Power, History and Society network (PHS) will sponsor a lecture by Theda Skocpol, Victor S. Thomas Professor of Government and Sociology, Harvard University, on Wednesday, April 23, from 12:30 pm-2 pm in CLA 1.302B. Although the exact title is still to be announced, the general theme will be the Tea Party and Republican Conservatism. The lecture will be followed by a workshop with graduate students from 2:30 pm-3:30 pm. For further information, please contact M. Maya Charrad, PHS faculty advisor, or one of the PHS coordinators for this event, Eric Borja, Yu Chen, Dan Jaster, and Luis Romero.

April 18, 1 pm. CLA 3.214F. Ethnography Brown Bag Series:  Paper by Professor Javier Auyero and Kristine Kilanski, Presented by Javier Auyero. Working Title: “Making Toast”: Care Practices and Routines in the Midst of Chronic Violence.

Apr 7, 4 pm. CLA 1.302E. 2014 UT LGBT Families Lecture: Tey Meadow – “Being a Gender: Transgender Children, Their Families and Social Institutions.” A reception from 5-6 pm will follow.

Apr 4, 1 pm. CLA 3.214F. Ethnography Brown Bag Series: Dissertation Proposal by Katie Sobering. 

Mar 21, Time/Location TBD. Race, Ethnography and Photography Talk and Workshop with Professors Max Farrar and Donna DeCesare. Co-sponsored event with the Race and Ethnicity Group. The talk will be open to the department, but workshop closed for selected applicants.

Mar 7, 1 pm. CLA 3.214F. Ethnography Brown Bag Series: Working Paper by Harel Shapira. Working Title: “What’s So Special About a Gun?”

Mar 5, Time/Location TBD. Dr. Selywn Cudjoe Lecture: “Ignorant Slaves/Tyrannical Master”. Dr. Selwyn Cudjoe will be giving a lecture based on his upcoming work on Trinidadian slaveholder William Hardin Burnley. Tentatively titled “Ignorant Slaves/Tyrannical Master: The Case of William Burnley and Caribbean Slavery,” this close examination of post colonialism offers an engaging view of the slave trade that transpired throughout the 19th century in the Caribbean.

Selwyn Cudjoe is the Margaret E. Deffenbaugh and LeRoy T. Carlson Professor in Comparative Literature and professor of Africana Studies at Wellesley College.

Feb 21, 1 pm. CLA 3.214F. Ethnography Brown Bag Series: Working Paper by Katie Jensen. Working Title: “‘Do you really believe he escaped that house?’: Racist epistemologies in Brazil’s asylum-screening process”

Feb 14, 1 pm. CLA 3.214F. Zotero Workshop Part II woth Professor Daniel Fridman. This workshop will provide a follow-up space for those who participated in the Jan. 31 Zotero Workshop. Bring any questions, concerns, or issues with the program for troubleshooting. We will also use this time to learn some more advanced Zotero techniques and tips.

Fall 2013 Events

Nov 20, 4pm. CLA 1.302D. “The Color of Citizenship: Race, Modernity and Latin American/Hispanic Political Thought.” Power, History and Society with the Race and Ethnicity Reading Group will be hosting Dr. Diego von Vacano from Texas A&M University. He is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science and works mainly in Comparative Political Theory (modern Latin American and European political thought) and also in immigration ethics, especially in relation to race and ethnicity. The authors he focuses on are Machiavelli, Las Casas, Nietzsche, Bolivar, and Vasconcelos.

Nov 5, 12 pm. CLA 3.106. Readings in Ethnography – Claudio Benzecry. As part of the Readings in Ethnography seminar, Dr. Claudio Benzecry (University of Connecticut) will discuss his book, The Opera Fanatic: Ethnography of an Obsession (University of Chicago, 2011). Sponsored by the Ethnography Lab.

Nov 1, 3:30 pm. Ethnography Lab Conference Room. “In Conversation with Shamus Khan.” Dr. Khan will give a talk about his forthcoming article “Talk is Cheap.” Some key readings will be circulated beforehand: the original article, critics’ responses and Khan’s response to the critiques. This will be an informal conversation between Khan and the audience, so reading is crucial. Please email Katie Jensen ( for the readings if you will be in attendance. Sponsored by the Ethnography Lab.

Nov 1, 12 pm. CLA 1.302B. PRC Brown Bag. Javier Auyero – “Disconnected (and Ethnographic) Thoughts on Violence and its Concatenations.” Based on 30 months of collaborative fieldwork in a poor neighborhood in Buenos Aires, and emphasizing more the ethnographic showing than the telling, this presentation scrutinizes the multiple uses of violence in the area and the concatenations between private and public forms of physical aggression. Much of the violence reported here resembles that which has been dissected by students of street violence in the United States, i.e. it is the product of interpersonal retaliation and remains encapsulated in dyadic exchanges. However, upon casting a wider net to include other forms of aggression (not only public but also sexual, domestic, and intimate) that take place inside and outside the home, and that intensely shape the course of residents’ daily lives, Auyero argues that diverse forms of violence among the urban poor: a) serve more than just retaliatory purposes, b) link with one another beyond only dyadic relationships, and c) become a repertoire of action. Sponsored by the Population Research Center (PRC).

Massad Workshop_Oct 25_Flyer-page-001Oct 25, 5:30 pm. CLA 0.122. PHS Middle East Working Group. “A Graduate Student Workshop with Professor Joseph Massad.” This student workshop will be an informal and interdisciplinary conversation with Dr. Massad immediately following his public lecture. His public talk is entitled “The Cultural Work of Recovering Palestine” and will take place on Friday, October 25th from 3:30 to 5 pm in Parlin Hall (PAR), Room 1. Dr. Massad is Associate Professor of Modern Arab Politics and Intellectual History at Columbia University. His writings and teaching concerns modern Arab politics and intellectual history. His book, Desiring Arabs (2007), winner of the Lionel Trilling Book Award, explores the politics of sexuality and the construction by nineteenth-century Arab intellectuals of Arab cultural heritage (“turath”) in interaction with discourses of colonialism as well as in the vocabulary emergent from the fields of Social Darwinism and psychoanalytic theory.

Oct 22, 5 pm. CLA 1.302D. PHS Middle East Working Group. “Discussions on Overseas Fieldwork Research: Bureaucracy, Preparations, and Research.” Given that PHS is an interdisciplinary group of sociologists, historians, and political scientists, there will be more talks and workshops that address the interests of many scholars. The Middle East Working Group (a subgroup of PHS) will be holding two events in the next week alone. First, there will be a discussion on overseas fieldwork research by graduate students who have either completed their fieldwork or are planning to leave for their research. Panelists include our very own Amina Zarrugh (Libya) and Eric Borja (Brazil) along with Rachel Sternfeld (Egypt) from Government.

Snoopy David Glisch-Sanchez: Reflexivity in an Age of Certainty: A Conversation on Identity, Power, and Humility
Monday, October 21, 2013 11:00-12:30PM Ethnography Lab (CLA 3.214F)

Within sociology and other academic disciplines, reflexivity has been a powerful tool in the ongoing effort to acknowledge the researcher’s active role in knowledge production. Reflexivity eschews the popular portrayal of researchers and scholars as mere observers of an empirical world.  Conversations around reflexivity have tended to focus on the individual researcher and research conducted across differences in identities.  Drawing on his own experiences conducting research on Latin@ transgender, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and queer (TLGBQ) experiences with various forms of social harm, Glisch-Sánchez will build upon the work of Patricia Hill Collins, Gloria Anzaldúa, Cherríe Moraga, and Pierre Bourdieu to raise questions concerning popular reflexive practices, how and when power and difference exist between seemingly similar or same subjectivities, and the disciplinary structures that hinder reflexive practice.  In particular, Glisch-Sánchez will consider the implicit role, if not express need, for humility as an organizing principle to successful reflexive practice.

Oct 18, 4 pm. CLA 1.302D. Nicole Guidotti-Hernández – “Violence and Nation State Formation Along the U.S.-Mexico Border.” Dr. Guidotti-Hernández is Associate Professor of American Studies and is the Associate Director of the Center for Mexican American Studies at The University of Texas at Austin. Her work focuses on the relationship between violence, race, and national borders. Her research and teaching interests include US/Third World Feminisms, Transnational Feminisms, Critical Race Studies, Chicana/o/Latina/o Studies, Borderlands History, and American Studies. Sponsored by the Race and Ethnicity Group.

Oct 4, 12 pm. CLA 1.302B. PRC Brown Bag: Jacqueline Angel – “The Policy Implications of the Extension of Morbidity.” This lecture examines the policy consequences of increased longevity and extended disability among Mexican-American elders. The work is informed by a study that employs growth mixture models and life table techniques to analyze patterns of decline in functional capacity measured by objective Performance Oriented Mobility Assessments (POMAs) in a cohort of 3,050 Mexican-origin elders who were initially interviewed in 1993-1994 and followed up at six points over the subsequent seventeen years. The main objectives of the study were:  (1) to characterize the functional capacity trajectories and mortality experiences of the original cohort, (2) to identify those factors accounting for differences in trajectories, and (3) to determine the proportion of life after age sixty-five in which an individual suffers from serious functional impairment.  Results reveal three general patterns of decline (1) high initial functioning followed by decline (48% of the sample); (3) moderate initial functioning followed by decline (37.5% of the sample) and (3) poor initial functioning followed by continuing poor functioning or slight improvement (14.5% of the sample).  On average, members of this cohort spent more than half of the period after sixty-five and before death or censoring with significant limitations in physical functioning.  Significant gender and nativity differences emerge.  In general, the data show that although Mexican-origin individuals live long lives much of the period after age sixty-five is characterized by serious functional impairment.  Implications of the lack of substantial compression of morbidity for the health and economic well-being of older Mexican Americans and their families, as well as for health and long-term care policy, are considered. Sponsored by the Population Research Center (PRC).


Please join us in the Ethnography Lab (CLA 3.214F)
on Tuesday, October 1, from 10 – 11:30 am
for a talk by Gloria Gonzalez-Lopez – “Identities in Transition”

“Am I the only one who is feeling like this? What’s wrong with me?” This is one of the inner dialogues that is not unusual for doctoral students to experience as part of their professional training, especially at moments of transition. These experiences become more evident especially as we go through some relevant professional and personal transformations in our so called “identity,” and as part of our professional development and personal growth. Sociology Professor Gloria González-López will facilitate a conversation with students who would like to engage in a dialogue about issues affecting our professional and personal identities and as we decipher academic life. A perspective on well-being and balance will be explored as part of this conversation.


Sep 30, 6 pm. CLA 1.302D. Ori Swed. “The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict:  A Case Study in Historical Contingency.”

This seemingly endless Israeli-Palestinian conflict has attracted much attention, continues to stir emotional responses from all involved and to raise controversy from many. For the most part, an attempt to draw a description of the conflict from the media yields nothing more than contradictions. On the one hand the state of Israel is portrayed as a predator colonial apartheid state and on the other is made to seem like a victim of perpetual terror that is innocently struggling to survive in a hostile environment. We will examine the Israeli political discourse and war of narrative in a way that will shed some light over the conflict and political actions.

Ori Swed, PhD Candidate in the Sociology Department at UT Austin, investigates the interception between culture and conflict in global and historical perspectives. A Graduate Fellow of the Schusterman Center for Jewish Studies and an Israel Institute Doctoral Fellow, his dissertation examines the infliuence of NGOs and aid organizations on the conflict dynamics in war zones. The presentation will be followed by a reply from Sociology graduate student Amina Zarrugh, and light refreshments will be served. Sponsored by Power, History and Society (PHS).

Sep 26, 5 pm. CLA 3.214F. Social Movements and Collective Action (SMCA) Working Group Inaugural Meeting. At the inaugural meeting of the Social Movements and Collective Action (SMCA) Working Group, Sociology graduate student Eric Borja will be discussing his experiences with the protests in Brazil this summer. Below is a link to a recent article he wrote on the subject, focused on the role of social media: Sponsored by Power, History and Society (PHS).

Talk with Dr. Diego von Vacano (Date TBD). Department of Political Sciences University of Texas A&M. The Color of Citizenship: Race, Modernity and Latin American / Hispanic Political Thought. The role of race in politics, citizenship, and the state is one of the most perplexing puzzles of modernity. While political thought has been slow to take up this puzzle, Diego von Vacano suggests that the tradition of Latin American and Hispanic political thought, which has long considered the place of mixed-race peoples throughout the Americas, is uniquely well-positioned to provide useful ways of thinking about the connections between race and citizenship. As he argues, debates in the United States about multiracial identity, the possibility of a post-racial world in the aftermath of Barack Obama, and demographic changes owed to the age of mass migration will inevitably have to confront the intellectual tradition related to racial admixture that comes to us from Latin America. Sponsored by Power, History and Society (PHS).

Performance: “A Public Reading with Pulitzer Prize-winning Author Junot Díaz”

Mon, Sep 23, 2013 • 7 – 9 pm • Auditorium, Blanton Museum of Art

The 2013-2014 edition of TILTS, “Reading Race in Literature & Film,” brings together scholars, artists, filmmakers, and writers for conversations about the ways that we experience race and ethnicity. Featuring prose that is “irresistible” and “exhilarating,” Díaz’s fiction is at the forefront of contemporary narratives of this kind. His work illuminates the identities, relationships, and ambitions of the Dominican and Dominican American characters at the center of his stories. Díaz will read a selection from his critically acclaimed texts, with a Q&A session and reception to follow.

For more information, contact Paloma Diaz.

Sponsored by: LLILAS Benson; Texas Institute for Literary & Textual Studies; John L. Warfield Center for African & African American Studies; Center for Mexican American Studies

Fall 2012 Events

Friday, November 16, 2012 3:00 in BUR 231

“Middle East & Muslim Societies Working Group”

We will discuss organizing an ongoing working group composed of graduate students and faculty who study the Middle East and Muslim societies. Our plans include:

  • Presentations of work-in-progress
  • Inviting faculty guest speakers
  • Networking and scholarship opportunities
  • Critical discussion of contemporary events in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia

The event is sponsored by PHS (Power, History and Society Network, Department of Sociology)

Contacts: Dr. Mounira Maya Charrad, Faculty Advisor (

Hyun Jeong Ha, Graduate Student Coordinator (

Amina Zarrugh, Graduate Student Coordinator (

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 10:00-12:00 in BUR 214

“Opening the Blinds: Talking Race, Sex and Class at UT-Austin”

Marleen Villanueva, Spanish Senior, member of La Colectiva Femenil
Marianna Anaya, Mexican American Studies and Radio, Television and Film Junior, member of La Colectiva Femenil
Juan Portillo, PhD Student in Sociology
Ganiva Reyes, PhD Student in Cultural Studies in Education
Rocio Villalobos, UT Alum and Program Coordinator for the Multicultural Engagement Center

While college is often sold as the ticket to a better life, being a UT student can also be a rough and violent experience. Recent bleach bombings against students of color, offensive sorority and fraternity race-themed parties, and the current attack on affirmative action can affect students’ sense of security, their sense of belonging in our imagined community, and their emotional well-being. At the same time, UT’s and Austin’s claim to a liberal mentality can serve to obscure or diminish the impact of these events, as well as the sense of alienation that students can and often feel. As a response to the current campus climate, the Sociology department invites you to a panel presentation and discussion to frame these and other issues in a way that allows us to unravel the many social forces that affect students, including race, gender, sexuality, and social class.

In this panel, the presenters will open up a conversation to explain how race, sexuality, gender, and social class are experienced by students. First, Marleen Villanueva and Marianna Anaya will provide a narrative of their educational trajectory at UT-Austin, shedding light on their experiences as first generation college students, women of color, and student leaders. Next, using an intersectional, feminist, sociological lens, Juan Portillo will explain how UT can learn from students’ experiences in order to understand how racism, sexism and classism are at work at UT in the form of “micro-aggressions.”  Ganiva Reyes will then talk about her experiences teaching the only required course in the College of Education that addresses race, gender, sexuality, and other factors in teacher training. Finally, Rocio Villalobos will provide her perspective as a UT alum and as someone who now works for UT in a center that seeks to address issues such as racism, classism, sexism, and homophobia.

The panel will be moderated by Dr Christine Williams, Chair of the Sociology Department. We hope that after the presentation the panelists and the audience can have a conversation that enriches our understanding of racism, sexism and classism, and what steps can be taken to address these problems.

The event is free and open to the public.

Monday, October 8, 2012 1:30-3:00 in BUR 480

“A Crooked Piece of Time” as navigated by Dr. Sheldon Ekland-Olson

Get ready: your career is likely to travel a path with unexpected turns through a landscape of previously unconnected traits.  Several will be discussed:  the ability to type, the Kwakiutl Tribe in the Northwest, Thursday afternoon conversations, going to jail, lawyering, transition from prison, violence, well-meaning yet threatening colleagues, unexpected opportunities, and returning home. Conclusion: develop guideposts, maintain integrity, and enjoy the trip.

Afternoon refreshments will be served.

Thursday, October 4, 2012 10:30-11:50 in BUR 214

“Comps and Defending Your Proposal: Secrets and Unexpected Benefits of the Initiated” with Christine Wheatley and Jane Ebot

Christine Wheatley completed her comprehensive exams in political sociology in April 2012 and is currently writing her dissertation proposal. Her dissertation project explores migrant experiences of deportation from the U.S. and return to Mexico. She will be sharing her reflections on how she managed the pressures while preparing for and taking her exams, the value that the exams have had for her, and how they have informed her dissertation project and the process of proposal writing.

Jane Ebot will be doing a short presentation on how to maneuver through the comps process (talking to comps chair, making your reading list, scheduling reading, and the 2 week countdown to the exams).  Additionally, Jane will be detailing the dissertation proposal process, including: thinking about your research questions, meeting with your advisor, picking committee members, writing, and how to manage the actual defense.

Tacos and fruit will be served.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012 10:00-12:00 in BUR 214

“Work/Life Balance” with Dr. Gloria Gonzalez-Lopez

We begin the semester by talking about balance and well-being. A balanced life is really important in maintaining good health and developing a fulfilling professional and academic career.

Summary of the presentation


Joins us on Wednesday, September 19th at Noon for a walk to the Harry Ransom Center exhibit:

I have Seen the Future: Norman Bel Geddes Designs America


Spring 2012 Brownbags:
Wednesday, February 29, 2012 11:00-12:00 in BUR 214
“SOC^3 : Social Networking, Social Ties, Social Media – Making Professional Connections in the Digital Age”  (Brunch will be served)

The Strength of Medium Ties:
Nicholas Reith will discuss some essential tips about creating and sustaining “medium ties” in your professional networks. Drawing on his previous experience working for the United Nations, Nicholas will break down the nuts and bolts of networking and informational interviewing needed to secure a position in a competitive job market, from strategizing, to schmoozing, all the way to the interview process. Nick will also talk about how to strategically develop your “medium ties” so as to make your dream career a reality.

Tumbles and Tweets: Cultivating Your Online Presence
Amias Maldonado will talk about the risks and rewards of utilizing social media to further your academic career.  From Twitter to blogging to online journals, there are a myriad of spaces now available for academic discussion and networking outside of the university, but how and why should a busy graduate student or professor get involved?  Amias will also provide a short primer of outlets available for those interested in online public sociology and discuss the importance of creating an online presence for those on the job market.

Friday, February 24, 2012 3:30-5:00 p.m. Burdine 214
Power, History, and Society (PHS)
Graduate Student and Faculty Network in the Department of Sociology Presents:
Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Decides?

Join us as Professor Sheldon Ekland-Olson talks about his critically acclaimed new book Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Decides? The landscape covered in the text is varied – eugenics, abortion, neonatal care, assisted suicide, lynching, and capital punishment. In each case the focus is upon two deeply important moral imperatives: Life is sacred and should be protected. Suffering, once detected should be alleviated. A single question is asked: How do we, through our customs, religion, and law, go about justifying the violation of these deeply important, perhaps universal, moral imperatives, while holding tightly to their importance?

Thursday, February 9th from 2-3 in BUR 214
“Politics, policies, and reproductive health in Texas ” The presentation will highlight the role of graduate students and outside collaborators and will include Joe Potter, Kristine Hopkins, Abigail Aiken, Celia Hubert, and Amanda Stevenson.

Recent legislation in Texas has slashed funding for reproductive health and family planning services, and a strict abortion sonogram law has been adopted. This talk will describe how a group from the Population Research Center, led by Joe Potter, secured funding and designed a broad project to study the impact of these changes. It will also address the processes leading to the legislation:

The legislation the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (Tx-PEP) will focus on is expected to have dramatic effects on women’s health throughout the state, particularly the health of low-income and ethnic minority women. Provisions in the state budget bill cut family planning funding by two-thirds (from approx. $50 million to $15 million per annum), eliminating most of Titles V and XX––the two programs most low income women in the state relied upon for contraceptive services. In addition, criteria for the allocation of the remaining funds were restructured on the basis of comprehensive primary care provision. As a consequence, many clinics serving high numbers of women, but providing only family planning services, were relegated to the lowest funding tier.

A second safety net for low-income women, the Texas Women’s Health Program (WHP) was directed to exclude all providers affiliated with the provision of abortion care. This would have excluded all Planned Parenthood affiliates from providing services under the program. Because of this exclusion, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services rejected Texas’ request for continued funding of the program.

In addition to family planning cuts, changes were also made in access to abortion services. HB 15, commonly known as “the sonogram bill,” instituted the performance of a mandatory sonogram, and provision of required information relating to abortion, at least 24 hours before an abortion procedure. Implementation of these requirements necessitates two appointments with the same physician, with at least a 24 hour waiting period in between. The full extent of the bill, including the provisions mandating description of the sonogram and making the fetal heart audible went into effect last month.

Over the course of the next three years, Tx-PEP will study the effects of these key pieces of legislation on women and providers in Texas. The research team will interview women about their experiences seeking contraceptive services and reproductive health care, collect data on contraception provided in the postpartum period––tracking how this affects longer-term reproductive outcomes––and analyze state data on unintended pregnancy and abortion rates. Data on Medicaid births will aid an analysis of the economic impacts on the state. Interviews with family planning clinic directors will shed light upon clinic closures, staff losses, and the range of contraceptive methods providers are able to offer on reduced funding.

Monday February 13th from 12-1:30 in BUR 231
“Why Non-Academic Need Not Be Un-Academic: Reflections on Working
Outside the Academy” with introductory remarks by Mary Rose

David McClendon will discuss his experience working at the Pew Research Center in Washington, D.C. He spent the summer of 2011 working for the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life on a project examining the demography of religious switching around the world. In addition to sharing some of that work, he will talk about the benefits and challenges of working in a non-academic, public research environment and how that experience has informed and improved the current direction of his academic career.

Caitlyn Collins will talk about her experience as a visiting researcher at FamilienForschung, a family-focused research and policy institute in Stuttgart, Germany during Summer 2011. She will discuss how she found the institute, navigated the bureaucracy of becoming affiliated with a state-funded statistical office, and employed the resources available there to aid her master’s thesis research, which explores the ways that political and cultural contexts impact the lives of working mothers in Germany and the United States.

Kristine Kilanski will discuss her experience working for two non-profit research and policy firms in Washington D.C. After graduating from college, Kristine accepted a full-time position as a research assistant at the Urban Institute in the Education Policy Center. Later, she moved to the Academy for Educational Development (now FHI 360), where she worked as a research associate in the Center for Education Research, Evaluation, and Technology. Kristine will explore the pros and cons of doing research outside the academy in her talk.

Thursday, February 16th from 2-3 in BUR 214
“The Arab Spring and the Role of the Military: Coercion and Diffusion through Arms Sales” Ori Swed

The unfolding events of the Arab Spring, which are reshaping the face of the Middle East, have brought into focus a number of sociological questions related to the nature of states and societal relations. In those events the role of the military has proven to be a crucial factor in determining which route the demonstration will take. In Egypt and Tunisia the army stepped aside and refused to take sides in the conflict. In Libya and Syria the army harshly and violently attempted to impose the governments’ will over the protestors. The question why the military preferred one route over the other is at the center of this paper.
In the last couple of decades the West’s involvement in the Middle East has come in many forms. One of their major policy instruments was arms sale to Mid-East allies. In my paper I suggest a structural explanation for the military response to the events of the Arab Spring. My argument is that the level of the Westernization of Middle Eastern militaries predicts the military’s response to the events. Along with arms sale growing dependence on the West allows for the diffusion of western norms about military stat-relations. Dependence therefore, operates as a form of soft power that, in that case, has affected military’s elites’ readiness to put themselves at the disposal of the state as opposed to the people.

Work/Life balance coffee talk Friday, December 9th at 10am in BUR 480

Our first in a  series of informal gatherings around themes of managing stress, increasing productivity and creating a healthy work/life balance this Friday over coffee and breakfast snacks. This can evolve by mutual design. Brownbags featuring guest speakers will be scheduled for Spring. Hope to see you Friday!

Exploring UT resources for:
Group options and classes
Integrated health programs
Stress management techniques
The healing power of meditation and the mind body lab

If you have ideas for this series or want to lead a discussion, come by or email me. In the meantime, please visit some of the links shown above. Many of the group classes are full now but will open up again in the Spring semester. Also feel free to send testimonials (they can be anonymous) about the Mind/Body lab, classes or groups you have enjoyed.

For International Students
Student Services Building, Glen Maloney Room (SSB G1.310)

Noon-1pm in BUR 214 two job talks for Assistant Professor of Sociology and Latin American Studies

Monday, November 28
Megan Rivers-Moore

Thursday, December 1
Daniel Fridman

The department invites all graduate students to attend Megan Rivers-Moore’s and Daniel Fridman’s job talks, both applicants for a new assistant professor in Sociology and Latin American Development position. Please plan to meet with the candidate immediately afterward and enjoy a 1pm pizza lunch.

The next meeting of the Sociology Department’s Race and Ethnicity Group will be on Friday, December 2nd from 11:30 am-1:00 pm in SAC 3.112. This will be the final meeting of the R&E for the fall semester. 

We are excited to announce that our meeting will feature presentations from three Sociology doctoral students on their research on race, gender, and sexualities. Following paper presentations from Lady Adjepong, Kate Averett, and Letisha Brown, we will engage a group discussion of their projects. Our semester’s focus on queer of color critique will provide some context for this conversation. Please see below for more detailed descriptions of each paper.

Lady Adjepong, “Black Female Masculinities”
Using Halberstam’s “Female Masculinity” as a point of departure, this paper explores how black female masculinities fits into the discourse of female masculinities. Through an examination of media representations of black lesbians and/or black women who embody/perform masculinities, the paper seeks to understand how black female masculinity is constructed and performed.

Kate Averett, “The Anxious Public: Disruptive Bodies, Troubled Spaces, and Anxious Response”
This paper explores the mutual construction of raced/gender bodies and public space to theorize how certain bodies – specifically, the bodies of transgender and gender non-conforming children – elicit fear, terror, or anxiety by their presence in certain (public) spaces. The recent highly publicized case of would-be “transgender girl scout” Bobby Montoya is examined as an example of this process, illuminating some of the connections between race, gender, embodiment, and belonging in the contemporary U.S.

Letisha Brown, “The Spectacle of Blackness: Race, Representation and the Black Female Athlete”
This paper seeks to examine the representation of the black woman who engages in sport as the dominant paradigm of the black athlete is coded as hyper-masculine. By engaging in an analysis of two black female athletes–Caster Semenya and Florence Griffith-Joyner–this essay will offer the two frames that seem to be the only scripts for the black female body engaged in sport to embody: masculine, or hyper-feminine (read sexual). This paper was recently awarded the Barbara A. Brown Outstanding Student Paper Award in the master’s students section of the North American Society for the Sociology of Sport.

Tuesday, November 8th in BUR 231 from noon-1:30
“Working at Intersections: Women’s and Gender Studies in Review Across Disciplines” with: Vivian Shaw, Maggie Tate, Amy Lodge and Michelle Mott

Intersections: Women’s and Gender Studies in Review Across Disciplines is a University of Texas graduate student operated journal that has been in publication since 2002. While initially founded through the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies and the Department of English, for the last several years, the staff and contributor roster has included a number of students from the Department of Sociology.

In this Brown bag, four current journal staff members from the Department of Sociology students will be discussing the Fall 2011 Issue, “Gender and Social Justice,” and the current Call for Papers for the Fall 2012 Issue, “Media(ting) Genders and Sexualities: Identity, Representation, and Politics in Media.” In addition, they will be discussing the process of transitioning from a print journal to an entirely digital journal, which is currently underway for Intersections.

Maggie, Amy, Vivian, and Michelle would also like to invite questions and discussion from attendees on any of the above topics and/or anything pertaining to the process for submission, review, etc. that individuals may have.

Wednesday, November 9th in BUR 214 from 2-3:30
“Screw the models, get back to the data: Or, on the disciplinary dangers of data ex nihilo” by Dr. Alex Weinreb

How is it that every demographer missed the start of Africa’s fertility transition? That virtually every political scientist failed to predict the demise of the Soviet Bloc? That scholars of gender have been unable to demonstrate the effects of women’s autonomy on anything? That social science – practiced by true professionals, not fly-by-night pundits – keeps on missing some big things, while getting other big things truly wrong?!

The main answer to all these questions, I suggest, is a misstep in normal science. We act as if our data come into being ex nihilo. They do not. Data gods don’t create data. People do. These days, those people use methods that are based much more on methodological norms and precedent – i.e., disciplinary culture – than on science. In this brief presentation (and conversation) I’ll provide some examples of how profoundly these ex nihilo assumptions have affected our data and, therefore, our claims. I also hope to point the way to a more modest, critical, valid, and theoretically informed approach.

Thursday, November 3 in BUR 231 from noon-1:30

Amanda Stevenson presents: Slow Pitch Statistics: Causality with Pictures
What does it mean for one thing to cause another? What is the difference between association and causation and how does regression fail to support causal inference? Learn to address these questions using counterfactual thought experiments. Apply this counterfactual approach to evaluating common causal methods for analyzing observational data, including propensity score matching, double difference or fixed effects, instrumental variables methods and regression discontinuity. Although the subject is statistical, the material will be presented visually and the jokes will be funny.

Isaac Sasson asks: What’s in an Error? A Levy Walk from Astronomy to the Social Sciences
How do we conceptualize probability? Are observations in Astronomy similar to observations in Sociology? Does the Average Man exist and is he/she governed by the law of frequency of error? Take part in a brief tour of probability and regression from 18th century astronomy to 21st century social sciences – including historical critique on the role of Statistics in Sociology. This one is low on math and heavy on epistemology.

Upcoming brown bags:

Tuesday November 8 – noon – 1 in BUR 231 Intersections Brownbag – Michelle Mott, Maggie Tate and Vivian Shaw
Wednesday November 9th time TBA – Dr Alex Weinreb

“Intimate Interventions: Preventing Pregnancy and Preventing HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa” Thursday, November 2nd in BUR 214 from 2-4
Dr. Rachel Sullivan Robinson, asks “Why have so many countries in Africa done so poorly combating the HIV epidemic?” While many have highlighted a lack of political will, poverty, and cultural obstacles, Robinson argues that a better explanation can be found in the resilience of domestic institutions, and in the interaction between international donors and national governments. Using case-studies of Malawi, Nigeria, and Senegal, she traces the transfer of resources, discourses, and technologies from the management of population growth to the management of HIV prevention efforts. Her talk will focus on Senegal.

Power History and Society Fall 2011 Event BUR 214 3-5 October 21st
Catherine Boone will be speaking on “State Building and Property Regimes in Africa” today at 3 pm in Burdine 214 in a PHS sponsored presentation. Christine Wheatley will give a brief reply. Looking forward to it and to seeing you there.

Monday, October 3, 2011 BUR 214 10 – 11 am
Marcos Perez, Pamela Neuman and Katie Sobering host a panel discussion and presentation of their summer field work in Argentina and Peru. Read more

September 27, 2011 BUR 231 noon- 1 pm
Vivian Shaw, Christine Wheatley and Ori Swed discuss their summer fieldwork in Japan, Mexico and Israel Read more

Welcome 2011 Cohort!  Celebrating the new academic year at Austin’s Pizza

The American Sociological Association annual meeting will be the first event covered by UT SOC. Tweeters needed! We will be blogging onsite and meeting at the alumni table to join new and old friends.  What happens in Vegas, benefits UT-Austin.

Vegas, the Handbook

To view the ASA event calendar:

2011 Annual Meeting Program Structure

The scheduling of the activities of the Annual Meeting is the responsibility of the ASA Executive Office. The tentative schedule of general ASA activities and plenary sessions for 2011 is outlined here. No other activities may be held during the plenary times noted below.

Friday, August 19

7:00-9:00 p.m. Opening Plenary Session
9:00-10:30 p.m. Welcoming Reception

Saturday, August 20
12:30-2:15 p.m. Mid-day Plenary Session
6:30-8:15 p.m. Section Receptions
9:30-11:00 p.m. Departmental Alumni Night  – Find UT Austin’s table

Sunday, August 21
4:30-6:15 p.m. ASA Awards Ceremony & Presidential Address Plenary
6:30- 7:30 p.m. Honorary Reception
8:00-10:00 p.m. Activities of Other Groups
9:30-11:00 p.m. MFP Benefit Reception

Monday, August 22
12:30-2:15 p.m. Mid-day Plenary Session
6:30-8:15 p.m. Section Receptions
9:30-11:00 p.m. Just Desserts, a TEF Benefit Reception

Tuesday, August 23
7:30-8:15 a.m. ASA Business Meeting

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Graduate Sociology Blog