July Message to Intro Soc Students about Class in Fall 2020

This week Wake Forest University is unveiling its new fall course schedule and students will have the opportunity/be forced to re-register for courses depending on their personal preferences/circumstances and availability of courses in different modalities. Faculty were given the opportunity to teach in one of four modalities: online, blended (traditional and with an online pathway),Continue reading “July Message to Intro Soc Students about Class in Fall 2020”

Small Teaching Online Book Summary

Over the past three weeks I have participated in a Wake Forest Center for the Advancement of Teaching summer reading group led by Director of Educational Development Dr. Kristi Verbeke. Over 30 faculty (IIRC) read and discussed Small Teaching Online by Flower Darby and James Lang. What follows is my reading notes and reflections onContinue reading “Small Teaching Online Book Summary”

Battling the Cell Phone Menace in Class for a Decade Now

Facebook’s wayback machine (“On this Day” app) reminded me this morning that I have been battling students using their cell phones in class for a long time now. I know some professors don’t care if students use their phones in class. Fine by me; their class, their rules. And some are just unaware. Many WakeContinue reading “Battling the Cell Phone Menace in Class for a Decade Now”

Data on Gender Segregation in Occupations (2012)

Teaching Arlie Hochschild’s The Managed Heart in my sociological theory class recently, I was looking for data on the percentage of flight attendants today who are male. I found a nice post on the issue by Mona Chalabi (“Dear Mona”) on the FiveThirtyEight blog. Answer: In 1980, 14.3 percent of flight attendants were male; inContinue reading “Data on Gender Segregation in Occupations (2012)”

New Course for Fall 2015: The Sociology of Guns

I am excited to be teaching a new course in the fall semester, related to my new research project on American gun culture: Sociology 384: Special Topics Seminar – The Sociology of Guns.┬áCourse description follows the flier. COURSE DESCRIPTION Guns often have a spectacular presence in the American imagination, from George Zimmerman to Sandy HookContinue reading “New Course for Fall 2015: The Sociology of Guns”

Putting Grading and Grades in Perspective

The quickening of life due to technology is a blessing I depend on daily. But it is also a curse at times, especially at the end of the semester when it comes to grades. I submitted my fall grades today at 11:45am (they were due at noon!). By 4pm the first grade complaint had arrivedContinue reading “Putting Grading and Grades in Perspective”

A Letter to My Future Students

I am participating in a faculty Writing Associates Seminar, in which we are learning to integrate writing more intelligently and productively into our courses. For an upcoming retreat, our seminar leader asked us to write a letter to our future students about what we hope they will get out of our class. I wrote theContinue reading “A Letter to My Future Students”

Contemporary Application of Bourdieu’s Distinction in Musical Taste

In his famous book Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste, Pierre Bourdieu reports findings from a French survey of cultural tastes fielded in 1967-68. Of particular note is a figure showing the distribution of preferences for three musical works by class fractions. Bourdieu reports that Bach’s “Well-Tempered Clavier” represents “legitimate taste” andContinue reading “Contemporary Application of Bourdieu’s Distinction in Musical Taste”