Past DCSS Events

2021 Awards Event: October 7, 2021

Sociologists for Social Justice Panel, Collaborating with the Community, March 23, 2021

Immigration in a Changing Policy Context, District of Columbia Sociological Society Address by Cecilia Menjivar, February 18, 2021

Reflections on the 2020 Elections, December 14, 2020 : 

Sociologists for Social Justice Panel, September 30, 2020:

2020 Awards Ceremony:

Friday, February 21, 2020, Graduate Student Event: "What I Wish I Knew Then," at ASA, 1430 K St NW 

A chance to meet fellow graduate students at different stages in their degree progression to exchange advice and wisdom from their graduate school experiences. Light refreshments provided.

Monday, October 28, 2019, Howard University: Book talk by Dr. Amaka Okechukwu
Dr. Amaka Okechukwu, assistant professor of sociology at George Mason University, has a new book out titled To Fulfill These Rights: Political Contention Over Affirmative Action and Open Admissions in Public Universities (Columbia University Press). In To Fulfill These Rights, Dr. Okechukwu offers a historically informed sociological account of the struggles over affirmative action and open admissions in higher education. Through case studies of policy retrenchment at public universities, she documents the protracted—but not always successful—rollback of inclusive policies in the context of shifting race and class politics. Okechukwu explores how conservative political actors, liberal administrators and legislators, and radical students have defined, challenged, and transformed the racial logics of colorblindness and diversity through political struggle. She highlights the voices and actions of the students fighting policy shifts in on-the-ground accounts of mobilization and activism, alongside incisive scrutiny of conservative tactics and messaging. To Fulfill These Rights provides a new analysis of the politics of higher education, centering the changing understandings and practices of race and class in the United States. It is timely and important reading at a moment when a right-wing Department of Justice and Supreme Court threaten the end of affirmative action.

Thursday, May 23, 2019,6-8:30pm, Busboys & Poets (14th and V Streets, NW): DCSS Annual Banquet

Tuesday, April 30 and Wednesday, May 1, 2019: Social Science Advocacy Day
Join DCSS and COSSA for the only annual, coordinated advocacy day in support of all of the social and behavioral sciences. Social Science Advocacy Day brings together social scientists and other science advocates from across the country to engage with policymakers in DC.

COSSA offers in-depth training and logistical support (including scheduling meetings with Congressional offices and providing an on-call expert to answer your day-of policy questions), as well as polished, up-to-date materials to help you bring your message to Capitol Hill. COSSA will team you up with other advocates from your area and partner your group with an experienced government relations professional who will guide you through your meetings with members of Congress and staff. Watch your inbox and the COSSA website for more in the coming weeks. #WhySocialScience

Sunday, April 7, 2019: DCSS Graduate Student Social Event
Sociology graduate students from around the greater DMV are invited to the DCSS Graduate Student Social Event! Meet your colleagues at American, George Mason, George Washington, Howard University, Johns Hopkins, UMd College Park, and more! We will start with a tour of the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument at 1:30pm then have dinner at Union Pub.

Saturday, December 8, 2018: Holiday party

Thursday, November 15, 2018: Wide World of Sociology in DC
What is the wide world of sociology like in DC? We hear from local sociologists working in a range of settings and celebrate happy hour with our sociology colleagues. Speakers:
1) Johanna Bockman, George Mason University
2) Gloria Gonzalez, Gonzalez Consulting LLC
3) Sally Hillsman, DC Sociological Society
4) Lynda Laughlin, US Census Bureau
5) Wendy Naus, Consortium of Social Science Associations
6) George Wimberly, American Educational Research Association

Wednesday, October 24, 2018: Evening with New Faculty 

Thursday, May 24, 2018: DCSS Annual Banquet

Thursday, January 24, 2018: Talk by ASA President-Elect Christine Williams
"The #MeToo Movement: Implications for Sociologists & Professional Societies"
Dr. Christine Williams is Professor of Sociology and the Elsie and Stanley E. (Skinny) Adams, Sr. Centennial Professor in Liberal Arts at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research focuses on gender, race, and class inequality in the workplace.  Professor Williams is the recipient of the American Sociological Association's Jessie Bernard Award, a lifetime achievement award “in recognition of scholarly work that has enlarged the horizons of sociology to encompass fully the role of women in society.”  She was also awarded the Distinguished Lecturer Award and the Feminist Mentor Award given by Sociologists for Women in Society. Dr. Williams' most recent publications analyze gender inequality and diversity culture in the oil and gas industry.  

Her most recent book, Inside Toyland:  Working, Shopping, and Social Inequality, exposes how the social inequalities of gender, race, and class are embedded within consumer culture through an examination of low-wage retail work.  Two previous books focus specifically on gender discrimination at work.  These prior works were based on studies of men and women in nontraditional (gender atypical) occupations, such as men in nursing and women in the U.S. Marine Corps.  She has also studied sexuality, homophobia, and sexual harassment in a wide variety of workplace settings. A co-edited book, Gender & Sexuality in the Workplace, was published in 2010.  Dr. Williams edited the journal, Gender and Society, from 2003-06. She chaired the Department of Sociology from 2010-14.  In 2018, she became President-Elect of the American Sociological Association.

Saturday, December 9, 2017, 2-4pm: Holiday Get Together of DCSS

Saturday, October 21, 2017, 2pm: DCSS Walking Tour of U Street
U Street embodies the sentiment that the District is more than "Washington." Far enough from Capitol Hill to have its own identity separate from the industry of government, but centrally located and accessible for DC residents and visitors alike, U Street is a complete neighborhood with substantial residential, commercial, institutional, and public space land uses. This tour is a mix of historical perspective, defining and looking closely at land use, and exploring not only how history and planning have intersected to make U Street what it is today, but how they continue to influence its development and human behavior.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017, 6-8:30pm: Fall DCSS Networking Event
Come network with your sociology colleagues and hear about the current work of Professor Kris Marsh at UMD, "Implicit Bias and Cultural Competency Collaboration between University of Maryland and Prince George's County Police Department." The talk will chronicle the relationship between the University of Maryland and the Prince George’s County Police Department. Current and future research projects with the police department will also be discussed. Our implicit bias project will be highlighted. Implicit bias is simply the association our minds make between two seemingly unrelated things, such as skin tone and the propensity to have a weapon or be violent. Although implicit bias is new to policing, it is a classic social psychological concept originating with Allport’s (1954) theoretical assessment of prejudice. Everyone has implicit biases. However, implicit bias in policing can be dangerous, and even deadly, for citizens as well as police officers. 

Thursday, October 12, 2017, 6:30pm: Book Talk with Kenneth Bedell
Kenneth Bedell, PhD, sociologist and former senior advisor in the Department of Education in the Obama administration, will discuss his just released book, Realizing the Civil Rights Dream: Diagnosing and Treating American Racism. It has been more than 53 years since Martin Luther King Jr. made his "I Have a Dream" speech. Why has the United States still not been able to make King's dream a reality after half a century of effort and progress? Is there still hope of full participation for all in America? In Realizing the Civil Rights Dream: Diagnosing and Treating American Racism, author Kenneth B. Bedell proposes a civil rights dream that grows out of American history and speaks to the 21st­century reality. He makes the case that, by adopting a larger perspective about the role of racism in preserving U.S. social, cultural, economic, and political institutions and practices, Americans can understand why it has been so difficult to fulfill the promises of the 1960s civil rights dream. Bedell describes and applies sociological theories that serve to explain why racism is still prevalent in the United States and identifies the steps that are necessary to overcome racism. The book concludes with proposals for ways to apply social science to realize the civil rights dream and examples of how individuals can take action to make a difference.

Thursday, May 25, 2017: DCSS Annual Banquet

Friday, January 27, 2017: ASA President-Elect Eduardo Bonilla-Silva DCSS Address, "Racism in Trump's America"
Eduardo Bonilla-Silva is Professor of Sociology at Duke University and the ASA President-Elect. His work in the last 20 years has been in the area of race. He has published on racial theory, race and methodology, color-blind racism, the idea that race stratification in the USA is becoming Latin America-like, racial grammar, HWCUs, race and human rights, race and citizenship, whiteness, and the Obama phenomenon among other things. In his work, he contends that racism is fundamentally about "racial domination," hence, racism is a collective and structural phenomenon in society. Hosted by ASA and DCSS.

Thursday, December 8, 2016: The 2016 Election - What Happened, Who Voted, and What Next?
Mark Hugo Lopez (Pew Research Center) and Sarah Stiles (Georgetown University) will discuss what happened in the election and who voted, with a special focus on the Hispanic and youth vote.

Sunday, December 4, 2016: DCSS Holiday Party  

Thursday, October 13, 2016: DCSS Happy Hour
Join DCSS for a fall happy hour and learn more about how Philip Cohen (Univ. of Maryland) and SocArXiv are opening up social science research to more people. Free drink tickets for grad students and for the first five folks who sign up as new DCSS members. Free appetizers. Come meet other area sociologists and learn more about DCSS.

​Thursday, February 11, 2016: ASA President-Elect Michèle Lamont's DCSS Address "Getting Respect: Responding to Stigma and
Discrimination in the United States, Brazil and Israel"
Michèle Lamont is a Professor of Sociology and of African and African American Studies and the Robert I. Goldman Professor of European Studies at Harvard University. She is also the Director of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University and the Co-Director of the Successful Societies program of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research. A cultural sociologist, Lamont is the coauthor of Getting Respect: Dealing with Stigma and Discrimination in the United States, Brazil, and Israel (to be published in 2016 by Princeton University Press). She is also the author of a dozen award-winning books and edited volumes which include studies of group boundaries, class, and ethnoracial dynamics in the United States and France, cultures of excellence in higher education, social resilience and neo-liberalism, and comparative cultural repertoires and the evaluation of qualitative social science research.​
Hosted by ASA and DCSS. ​​

Sunday, December 6, 2015: DCSS Holiday Party

Wednesday, November 4, 2015: The Social, Political, and Built Environment of the Places We Call Home: A DCSS Forum on Housing Issues
What role does housing play in creating and maintaining social stratification? Housing costs, racially segregated housing markets, and basic demographic changes are challenging our notion of what is "home." Join DCSS to learn about recent research and discuss challenges and opportunities. ​ Brian McCabe, Georgetown University, "Homeownership & the Politics of Exclusion" Gregory Squires, George Washington University, "Inequality and the Continuing Costs of the Foreclosure Crisis" Michael Bader, American University, "Aging in America's Changing Places" Discussion lead by Uwe Brandes, Executive Director, Georgetown University Urban and Regional Planning Program Auditorium. Hosted by the DC Sociological Society and the Georgetown University Urban and Regional Planning Program.

Thursday, October 15, 2015: What Do Applied Sociologists Do? DCSS Panel Discussion

This a great opportunity for students and recent graduates to learn more about sociology careers outside of academia. Panelists will share their experiences working for government, non-profit, and research organizations.  
Hosted by the DC Sociological Society and the George Washington University Sociology Department.

Andrew Clarkwest, ThinkShift Collaborative
John Czajka, Mathematica Policy Research
Diana Elliott, Pew Charitable Trust
Theresa Goedeke, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Chris Tamborini, Social Security Administration 

Friday, September 25, 2015: DCSS President's Invitational Panel of New Sociology Professors

The DCSS president has invited the new DC-area sociology professors to introduce themselves to the DC sociological community. This is a great opportunity for the new professors to meet their colleagues in the area and for graduate students, applied sociologists, area professors, and many others in the DC sociological community to meet our new colleagues. This event is organized by Mason's Sociology and Anthropology Department, and is free and open to the public. So far, the panelists include: 

​Nicole Angotti, American University
Ernesto Castaneda, American University
Jordanna Matlon, American University
Yuki Kato, Georgetown University
Elizangela Storelli, George Mason University

Thursday, May 28, 2015:
​​ DCSS Annual Banquet and “Bringing Social Science Research into the Policy Process” Panel Discussion. 
Panelists: Patricia White (NSF), Roberta Spalter-Roth (ASA and Mason), Amy Best (Mason), and Kelly Joyce (Drexel University).

Wednesday, March 4, 2015 : "Does this Look Sexual to You?": Why do People do BDSM?

Dr. Julie Fennell, Associate Professor of Sociology, Gallaudet University, GWU, Elliott School of International Affairs. Hosted by GWU’s Department of Sociology and DCSS.

​As seen in popular works of fiction like 50 Shades of Grey, the general public and most scholars as well have assumed that people engage in BDSM (Bondage & Discipline/Dominance & submission/Sadism & Masochism) for sexual gratification. Dr. Fennell’s talk will use in-depth interviews and extensive ethnographic observations from the BDSM subculture (“the Scene”) to explore this assumption. It will discuss in detail the many reasons people who are involved in “kink” give for their participation—focusing on sociality, sexuality, thrill-seeking, and spirituality.  Dr. Fennell is an associate professor of Sociology at Gallaudet University, with a Ph.D. from Brown University. Her work focuses on sexuality, contraception, and gender, and has been published in Gender & Society and Contraception. She is a well-established member of the BDSM subculture in Washington D.C. and is one of the first “out” kinksters to study the BDSM scene in the U.S.

Friday, January 23, 2015: “Gender, Work and Class in the Great Depression and the Great Recession" 

Ruth Milkman, Professor of Sociology, CUNY Graduate Center, ASA President-Elect ​
Hosted by ASA and DCSS. ​​

All sociology graduate students in the greater DC area are invited to have coffee with Professor Ruth Milkman at 4:30pm at ASA HQ before her talk.

Ruth Milkman is a sociologist of labor and labor movements who has written on a variety of topics involving work and organized labor in the United States, past and present. Her early research focused on the impact of economic crisis and war on women workers in the 1930s and 1940s. She then went on to study the restructuring of the U.S. automobile industry and its impact on workers and their union in the 1980s and 1990s. More recently she has written extensively about low-wage immigrant workers in the U.S., analyzing their employment conditions as well as the dynamics of immigrant labor organizing. She helped lead a multi-city team documenting the prevalence of wage theft and violations of other workplace laws in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. She also recently co-authored a study of California’s paid family leave program. After 21 years as a sociology professor at UCLA, she returned to New York City in 2010. She is currently a Professor of Sociology at the CUNY Graduate Center and at the Joseph F. Murphy Institute for Worker Education and Labor Studies, where she also serves as Research Director.

Saturday, December 6, 2014:
DCSS Holiday Party

Friday, November 7, 2014: DCSS Sociology Graduate Student Group Meet-and-Greet.

The theme is "Mentoring and Inspiration in Sociology: Studying Race and Ethnicity." Smith Public Trust.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014:Paula England, 2014 ASA President, Professor of Sociology, NYU, “Hooking Up and Romantic Relationships in College Today,” ASA Presidential Address to DCSS

Friday, September 5, 2014: DC Area Sociology PhD Student Meet-and-Greet
Meet other PhD students in the area to network, socialize, and talk about common concerns (esp. the job market) and common research interests. PhD students from George Mason University, Howard University, Johns Hopkins University, and University of Maryland College Park have been invited, but all current PhD students in sociology living in the greater DC area are invited. There will be a cash bar and some free appetizers. The first five sociology PhD students at Local 16 get a free drink. 

Thursday, September 4, 2014: Johanna Bockman, Associate Professor of Sociology, George Mason University, DCSS President's Address, "Sociology in DC, Sociology of DC: Studying Gentrification"

Hosted by Mason's Department of Sociology and Anthropology.
The video of the DCSS President's Address: