Department of Sociology News

Volume on inequality edited by Alair MacLean and David Grusky published by The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science

The spectacular takeoff in income inequality commenced long ago and has now become a fixed and seemingly stable foundation of contemporary social life.  Although there has been much research on the sources and causes of the takeoff, we know less about how people have come to forge new ways of living in the context of this new high-inequality regime.  How has rising income inequality changed the rules by which people come to participate in the key social institutions of our time (i.e., the family, the military, the prison, and the educational system)?  How has it changed the rules by which rewards are allocated in the labor market?  And how has it changed the lifestyles we lead, the attitudes we hold, and the politics in which we believe?  This book lays out the likely effects of this transformation within each of these three domains. Read more about the edited volume and Dr. MacLean’s articles included in the volume.

Article on gender and environmental sociology by Emily Huddart Kennedy and Liz Dzialo published in Sociology Compass.

Emily Huddart Kennedy and Liz Dzialo have published an article on gender and environmental sociology in Sociology Compass. The article presents an excellent critical appraisal of existing gender-environment theorizing, offers important guidance on how such scholarship can be improved, and has implications for expanding our understanding of the relationship between “power and inequality, gender dynamics, and the bi-directional relationship between the two.” Read more about the article.

William Julius Wilson Symposium featuring Dr. Nalini Nadkarni, Monday, November 30, 7:30pm

Washington State University created the William Julius Wilson Award for the Advancement of Social Justice in 2009 to honor individuals who promote social inclusiveness and diversity in social policies and strive to reduce joblessness. The award is named after William Julius Wilson, who received his PhD in sociology from WSU in 1966. Professor Wilson is widely considered one of the nation’s most influential sociologists.

The 2015 William Julius Wilson honoree is Dr. Nalini Nadkami, an ecologist who, among many things, has done work to bring science and potential job training to prisons.  She was the founder and Co-Director of the Sustainability in Prisons Project in Washington State, a program that successful reduced the recidivism rate to 1-2%. Her innovative work promotes social inclusiveness of prisoners and helps to reduce joblessness of prisoners after they leave prison.

Monday, November 30
7:30 p.m.
CUB Auditorium

Please mark your calendar for her talk happening later this semester. Learn more about the William Julius Wilson Symposium.

Global Case Competition takes students to India

Sixteen globally engaged students and faculty did something different this spring break—they traveled to Bangalore, India. Participation in last year’s Global Case Competition (GCC) is what brought most of this interdisciplinary group together for “the experience of a lifetime,” according to graduate student Rosanna Villa Rojas, who was among the travelers.

GCC is one of many global learning opportunities offered through the Office of International Programs at WSU. For the past four years, International Programs has brought together international and non-international undergraduate and graduate students from across academic disciplines and WSU campuses to participate as members of small, diverse teams. Each team must work together to solve a complex global issue. Only five of up to 20 competing teams are selected to present their solutions in a public forum.

Remembering Ivan Nye (1918-2014)

Dr. Ivan Nye, who for many years was a member of the departments of Sociology and Rural Sociology at WSU, died March 1, 2014, at the age of 96. The obituary at the end of this piece was written by former faculty member Dr. Viktor Gecas, who was featured in the Fall 2013 issue of Sociology E-News.

Ivan was the Department of Rural Sociology chair who welcomed me to WSU in 1969 and contributed greatly to the start of my career. As the newest faculty member, I soon learned that a half-hour coffee session each morning at 8:30 was more an expectation than a possibility. Ivan, Walter Slocum, and sometimes others, would stop by my small office, and we would walk across the street to the Compton Union Building (CUB).