Two of our graduate students, Daniel Driscoll and Davide Carpano, are currently abroad in Germany at the Max Planck Institute. Both grad students are having a great time during their travels and Daniel Driscoll said: “It’s been very nice here in Germany. The intellectual environment at Max Planck Institute (MPI) is great for getting work done and connecting with others.” We are all very excited for them here at the Sociology Department, and cannot wait to hear more from both Daniel and Davide.
Fearing the Black Body: The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia by our PhD alumna Sabrina Strings was just released!
It explores how fat phobia in the West finds its roots not in health concerns, but in the triangle slave trade and Protestantism.
How the female body has been racialized for over two hundred years.
There is an obesity epidemic in this country and poor black women are particularly stigmatized as “diseased” and a burden on the public health care system. This is only the most recent incarnation of the fear of fat black women, which Sabrina Strings shows took root more than two hundred years ago.
Strings weaves together an eye-opening historical narrative ranging from the Renaissance to the current moment, analyzing important works of art, newspaper and magazine articles, and scientific literature and medical journals—where fat bodies were once praised—showing that fat phobia, as it relates to black women, did not originate with medical findings, but with the Enlightenment era belief that fatness was evidence of “savagery” and racial inferiority.
The author argues that the contemporary ideal of slenderness is, at its very core, racialized and racist. Indeed, it was not until the early twentieth century, when racialized attitudes against fatness were already entrenched in the culture, that the medical establishment began its crusade against obesity.
An important and original work, Fearing the Black Body argues convincingly that fat phobia isn’t about health at all, but rather a means of using the body to validate race, class, and gender prejudice.
The book has been featured on three “must read” lists:
John Skrentny, a Professor of Sociology and UCSD faculty member, was recently referenced in a Voice of San Diego article regarding the Trump administration’s decision to repeal an Obama administration rule allowing spouses of H-4 visa holders to legally work in the United States, and its potential impacts on the economy of San Diego. The article referencing Professor Skrentny can be found here.
You can also view Professor Skrentny’s personal website here.
The UCSD Sociology Department Graduate Student Workshop was held Friday May 18th. This year’s workshops included discussions related to theory, methods, and sociological sub-disciplines, as well as reflections on the past, present, and future of sociology and what makes something sociology (or not).
Throughout the workshop, participants had engaging and interactive discussions both with faculty from the sociology department and with other graduate students. Graduate students from all disciplines were welcome to participate in this year’s workshop as they discussed a variety of theoretical and methodological topics.
The organizing committee would like to thank all attendees for their participation in the graduate workshop, and looks forward to welcoming everyone back to next year’s workshop.
For more photographs of the event and information about the workshop, please visit the workshop site.
Lauren Olsen, PhD candidate at the UCSD Department of Sociology, has won the 2018 Louise Johnson Scholar Award of the ASA Medical Sociology Section. Selection for the Louise Johnson Scholar Award is based on academic merit and the quality of an accepted ASA paper related to medical sociology.
The Louise Johnson Scholar fund was established in memory of Louise Johnson, a pioneering medical sociologist whose mentorship and scholarship the American Sociological Association is pleased to honor. As the Scholar recipient, Olsen will receive travel funds up to $500 to present at the annual ASA meetings in Chicago and attend section events. Her award will be presented at the section awards ceremony at ASA.
Graduate student as the UCSD sociology department, Natalie Novick, was featured in a KPBS interview. In the interview, titled “The Next Big Idea: What Makes Cities Good Homes for Startups,” Novick spoke on about her own research, in which she studies startups and what policymakers can do to attract them.
Novick discusses what really drives entrepreneurs and states:
“What you really see, talking with these entrepreneurs, is that they’re really driven by a mission, some unique problem or question. So offering different kinds of incentives that would support an economically-minded entrepreneur doesn’t always work for these mission-driven, often very idealist entrepreneurs.”
She continues on by explaining how although San Diego has a lot to offer, it continues to be marketed only for its tourist appeal.
“For San Diego to be a great destination for startups it will need to share its strengths with the world and let it be known for them. It has much to offer but people must see this as a ‘serious’ place and not just a vacation spot.”
To listen to the full interview, click here.
Juan Pablo Pardo-Guerra, assitant professor of sociology at UC San Diego, was a guest on Spanish-language podcast, “Sociología con Acento.” During the podcast interview, Pardo-Guerra discussed his transition from the physics field to sociology.
Juan Pablo Pardo-Guerra received his BSc in physics from Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and his PhD in science and technology studies from the University of Edinburgh. Therefore, his research explores the connections between markets, cultures and technologies. His current research, as discussed in the interview, focuses of the sociology of finance.
To listen to the podcast, please visit here.
Juan Pablo Pardo-Guerra, profesor asistente de sociología en la Universidad de California en San Diego, fue invitado en el podcast, “Sociología con Acento“. Durante la entrevista de podcast, Pardo-Guerra discutió su transición de la física a la sociología.
Juan Pablo Pardo-Guerra recibió su licenciatura en ciencias en física de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) y su doctorado en ciencias y tecnología de la Universidad de Edimburgo. Sus investigaciónes exploran las conexiones entre mercados, culturas y tecnologías. Su investigación mas reciente, como el discute en la entrevista, se centra en la sociología de las finanzas.
Para escuchar el podcast, por favor visite aquí.
John Skrentny, professor at sociology, was featured in an article published by CNN titled “How Trump became ‘the white affirmative action president’.”
“It’s odd that Trump’s Justice Department is going after affirmative action while Trump is putting all of these people in positions of power and influence who are clearly not qualified for their positions,” said John Skrentny of Sociology and the Yankelovich Center to CNN.