52 works that inspired sociologists this year

  1. Bourdieu, Pierre. Distinction: A social critique of the judgement of taste. Harvard University Press, 1984.
  2. Glaser, Barney G., and Anselm L. Strauss. The discovery of grounded theory: Strategies for qualitative research. Transaction Books, 2009.
  3. Putnam, Robert D. Bowling alone: The collapse and revival of American community. Simon and Schuster, 2001.
  4. Raudenbush, Stephen W. Hierarchical linear models: Applications and data analysis methods. Vol. 1. Sage, 2002.
  5. Massey, Douglas S. and Nancy Denton. American apartheid: Segregation and the making of the underclass. Harvard University Press, 1993.
  6. Goffman, Erving. The presentation of self in everyday life. Garden City, NY (1959).
  7. Steensland, Brian, Lynn D. Robinson, W. Bradford Wilcox, Jerry Z. Park, Mark D. Regnerus, and Robert D. Woodberry. “The measure of American religion: Toward improving the state of the art.” Social Forces 79, no. 1 (2000): 291-318.
  8. Swidler, Ann. “Culture in action: Symbols and strategies.” American sociological review (1986): 273-286.
  9. McPherson, Miller, Lynn Smith-Lovin, and James M. Cook. “Birds of a feather: Homophily in social networks.” Annual review of sociology (2001): 415-444.
  10. Granovetter, Mark S. “The strength of weak ties.” American journal of sociology(1973): 1360-1380.
  11. Blumer, Herbert. Symbolic Interactionism: Perspective and Method. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc, (1969).
  12. West, Candace, and Don H. Zimmerman. “Doing gender.” Gender & society 1, no. 2 (1987): 125-151.
  13. Alba, Richard D., and Victor G. Nee. Remaking the American mainstream: Assimilation and contemporary immigration. Harvard University Press, 2005.
  14. Putnam, Robert D., and David E. Campbell. American grace: How religion divides and unites us. Simon and Schuster, 2010.
  15. Ruggles, Steven, Matthew Sobek, Catherine A. Fitch, Patricia Kelly Hall, and Chad Ronnander. Integrated public use microdata series: Version 2.0. Historical Census Projects, Department of History, University of Minnesota, 1997.
  16. Coleman, James S. “Social capital in the creation of human capital.” American journal of sociology (1988): S95-S120.
  17. Portes, Alejandro, and Min Zhou. “The new second generation: Segmented assimilation and its variants.” The annals of the American academy of political and social science 530, no. 1 (1993): 74-96.
  18. Bourdieu, Pierre. Outline of a Theory of Practice” translated by R. Nice. Cambridge, 1977.
  19. Gary S. Becker. A Treatise on the Family. Harvard university press, 1981.
  20. Allport, Gordon W. The Nature of Human Prejudice. Basic books, 1954.
  21. Portes, Alejandro, and Rubén G. Rumbaut. Legacies: The story of the immigrant second generation. University of California Pr, 2001.
  22. Wilson, William Julius. The truly disadvantaged: The inner city, the underclass, and public policy. University of Chicago Press, 1987.
  23. Charmaz, Kathy. Constructing grounded theory: A practical guide through qualitative analysis. Pine Forge Press, 2006.
  24. Wasserman, Stanley. Social network analysis: Methods and applications. Vol. 8. Cambridge university press, 1994.
  25. Benford, Robert D., and David A. Snow. “Framing processes and social movements: An overview and assessment.” Annual review of sociology (2000): 611-639.
  26. Anderson, Elijah. Code of the street: Decency, violence, and the moral life of the inner city. WW Norton & Company, 1999.
  27. Sampson, Robert J., Jeffrey D. Morenoff, and Thomas Gannon-Rowley. “Assessing” neighborhood effects”: Social processes and new directions in research.” Annual review of sociology (2002): 443-478.
  28. Beck, Ulrich. Risk society: Towards a new modernity. Vol. 17. Sage, 1992.
  29. Smith, Christian. American evangelicalism: Embattled and thriving. University of Chicago Press, 1998.
  30. Radloff, Lenore Sawyer. “The CES-D scale a self-report depression scale for research in the general population.” Applied psychological measurement 1, no. 3 (1977): 385-401.
  31. Goffman, Erving. Stigma: Notes on the management of spoiled identity. Simon & Schuster, 1963.
  32. Heckman, James J. “Sample selection bias as a specification error.”Econometrica: Journal of the econometric society (1979): 153-161.
  33. Sewell Jr, William H. “A theory of structure: Duality, agency, and transformation.”American journal of sociology (1992): 1-29.
  34. McCarthy, John D., and Mayer N. Zald. “Resource mobilization and social movements: A partial theory.” American journal of sociology (1977): 1212-1241.
  35. Coleman, James S. Foundations of social theory. Harvard University Press, 1994.
  36. Garfinkel, Harold. Studies in ethnomethodology. Prentice Hall, 1967.
  37. Shaw, Clifford Robe, and Henry Donald McKay. Juvenile delinquency and urban areas: A study of rates of delinquents in relation to differential characteristics of local communities in American cities. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1942.
  38. Collins, Randall. Interaction ritual chains. Princeton university press, 2004
  39. Lamont, Michèle, and Virag Molnar. “The study of boundaries in the social sciences.” Annual review of sociology 28 (2002): 167-195.
  40. Giddens, Anthony. Modernity and self-identity: Self and society in the late modern age. Stanford University Press, 1991.
  41. Blalock, Humbert M. Toward a Theory of Minority-group Relations. John Wiley, 1967.
  42. Quillian, Lincoln. “Prejudice as a response to perceived group threat: Population composition and anti-immigrant and racial prejudice in Europe.” American Sociological Review (1995): 586-611.
  43. Esping-Andersen, Gøsta. The three worlds of welfare capitalism. Vol. 6. Cambridge: Polity press, 1990.
  44. Acker, Joan. “Hierarchies, jobs, bodies: A theory of gendered organizations.”Gender & society 4, no. 2 (1990): 139-158.
  45. Allison, Paul D., ed. Missing data. No. 136. Sage, 2001.
  46. Bourdieu, Pierre. The logic of practice. Stanford University Press, 1990.
  47. Swidler, Ann. Talk of love: How culture matters. University of Chicago Press, 2000.
  48. Blumer, Herbert. “Race prejudice as a sense of group position.” The Pacific Sociological Review 1, no. 1 (1958): 3-7.
  49. McAdam, Doug. Political process and the development of black insurgency, 1930-1970. University of Chicago Press, 1982.
  50. Lareau, Annette. Unequal childhoods: Class, race, and family life. University of California Pr, 2011.
  51. Geertz, Clifford. The interpretation of cultures: Selected essays. Vol. 5019. Basic books, 1973.
  52. Bourdieu, Pierre. The field of cultural production: Essays on art and literature. Columbia University Press, 1993.

Based on citation analysis of 1,166 articles published in 39 sociological journals in 2013.

13 thoughts on “52 works that inspired sociologists this year”

  1. It’s disconcerting that only 5 “inspirational works” were published in the last 10 years, roughly half as many as were published at least 40 years ago.

    The 1980s called, and they want their sociology back.


    1. In 2009, the average citation in a top 4 sociology journal article was 11 years old.
      In 1979, the average citation in a top 4 sociology journal article was 7 years old.

      Full trend:


      1. Well, “inspirational” is a funny word (Heckman selections, really?), but there is a reasonable demographic explanation for the increasing age of the average citation: On the day the discipline started all the citations were one minute old. How fast and far that trend continues is a different question.


  2. Where’s the list of 52 works that sociologists used as ritual citations this year? or 52 works that sociologists begrudgingly cited this year because they didn’t want to say know to all of reviewer C’s advice?


    1. Reviewer B recommended revising the article title. S/he correctly points out that we are unable to identify the mechanism by which works are cited. That said, recent research in social psychology (Upworth 2013) and neurobiology (Buzzfeed 2013), strongly suggests that feel good lists are the prime motivator for all human action. Therefore, we feel that the headline reflects the most plausible interpretation of the data.


  3. I’m struck by the fact that the top six results are books, and more than half overall (31, I think). I’m curious about our sister disciplines. This certainly wouldn’t be the case in Econ or Psych, and I doubt it would be Poli Sci. I suspect antrho is even more of a book discipline.


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