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For Immediate Release
NORTHWESTERN UNIVERITY’S ALDON MORRIS ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE AMERICAN SOCIOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION
Rhacel Salazar Parreñas, University of Southern California, Voted ASA Vice President
Newswise — Washington, DC—Aldon Morris, Leon Forrest Professor of Sociology and African American Studies at Northwestern University, was elected the 112th President of the American Sociological Association (ASA), and Rhacel Parreñas, Professor of Sociology and Gender Studies at the University of Southern California, has been elected Vice President. Morris and Parreñas will serve as President- and Vice President-elect for one year before succeeding University of Texas-Austin’s Christine Williams and Joya Misra, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, respectively in August 2020.
“It was an honor to be nominated and elected as the 112th president of ASA by the membership,” said Aldon. “In the next few months, I will concentrate on how to make the ASA Annual Meeting more relevant and meaningful to American society and globally. I am an optimist, so I still believe the sociological imagination can be very useful during these troubling times.”
In his book, The Scholar Denied: W.E.B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology (2015), Morris explores the role of W.E.B. Du Bois in the founding of American Sociology. Du Bois, he argues, was central in producing the first major empirical sociological studies in America and building the first scientific school of American sociology. His book, The Origins of the Civil Rights Movement, which received several prizes including the ASA Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Award, emphasized the organizational and cultural basis of social protest. His areas of interest include social movements, theory, sociology of W. E. B. Du Bois, the civil rights movement, race, religion, social inequality and political sociology.
“My vision for ASA concerns many crucial issues: 1) Gender inequality, sexual harassment, #metoo issues that need to be front and center and addressed head-on; 2) the serious level of class inequality responsible for untold levels of human suffering; and 3) the need to address the unprecedented level of violence driven by poverty in urban areas like my city of Chicago,” said Morris.
Morris is a first-generation college student from rural Mississippi. “I worked in the factories of Chicago and witnessed my mother make ends meet as a single mother doing domestic work,” said Morris. “I did not start out with expectations I would ever attend college let alone become president of ASA…. These personal characteristics are important only because they underscore the need to cast a wide tent to discover sociological talent usually hidden in non-elite spaces, creating the phenomenon of scholars denied.”
Rhacel Salazar Parreñas, Professor of Sociology and Gender Studies at the University of Southern California, is an ethnographer whose research examines experiences of migrant workers from the Philippines. Her areas of research include labor, gender, international migration, the family and economic sociology. Her works examine the constitution of gender in women's migration and the construction of migrant workers as "unfree laborers."
“I am hopeful that my election inspires and empowers younger scholars who wish to pursue sociological topics that fall outside of the canon,” said Parreñas. “I will seek to promote greater inclusivity and diversity in our organization and more broadly higher education. As a Filipino, I hope to inspire the younger generation of Filipino and Filipino Americans to see value in the study of society.”
For the full slate of candidates, see www.asanet.org/2019election.
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The American Sociological Association, founded in 1905, is a non-profit membership association dedicated to serving sociologists in their work, advancing sociology as a science and profession, and promoting the contributions to and use of sociology by society.