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  1. The Causes of Fraud in the Financial Crisis of 2007 to 2009: Evidence from the Mortgage-Backed Securities Industry

    The financial crisis of 2007 to 2009 was marked by widespread fraud in the mortgage securitization industry. Most of the largest mortgage originators and mortgage-backed securities issuers and underwriters have been implicated in regulatory settlements, and many have paid multibillion-dollar penalties. This article seeks to explain why this behavior became so pervasive. We evaluate predominant theories of white-collar crime, finding that theories emphasizing deregulation or technical opacity identify only necessary, not sufficient, conditions.

  2. Trust Thy Crooked Neighbor: Multiplexity in Chicago Organized Crime Networks

    Bureaucratic and patrimonial theories of organized crime tend to miss the history and mobility of crime groups integrating into and organizing with legitimate society. The network property of multiplexity—when more than one type of relationship exists between a pair of actors—offers a theoretical and empirical inroad to analyzing overlapping relationships of seemingly disparate social spheres.

  3. Manufacturing Gender Inequality in the New Economy: High School Training for Work in Blue-Collar Communities

    Tensions between the demands of the knowledge-based economy and remaining, blue-collar jobs underlie renewed debates about whether schools should emphasize career and technical training or college-preparatory curricula. We add a gendered lens to this issue, given the male-dominated nature of blue-collar jobs and women’s greater returns to college. Using the ELS:2002, this study exploits spatial variation in school curricula and jobs to investigate local dynamics that shape gender stratification.

  4. Geography, Joint Choices, and the Reproduction of Gender Inequality

    We examine the extent to which the gender wage gap stems from dual-earner couples jointly choosing where to live. If couples locate in places better suited for the man’s employment than for the woman’s, the resulting mismatch of women to employers will depress women’s wages.

  5. Educational Authority in the ''Open Door Marketplace: Labor Market Consequences of For-profit, Nonprofit, and Fictional Educational Credentials

    In recent years, private for-profit education has been the fastest growing segment of the U.S. postsecondary system. Traditional hiring models suggest that employers clearly and efficiently evaluate college credentials, but this changing institutional landscape raises an important question: How do employers assess credentials from emerging institutions? Building on theories of educational authority, we hypothesize that employers respond to an associate’s degree itself over the institution from which it came.

  6. The Content of Our #Characters: Black Twitter as Counterpublic

    Much media attention has been placed on "Black Twitter," a collective composed primarily of African Americans who have managed to effect change through the microblogging platform Twitter. Organized around the hashtag #BlackTwitter, this collection of users has been credited with injecting uniquely black concerns and perspectives into the national discourse. However, Black Twitter as an entity has not been theoretically contextualized and grounded in empirical research.

  7. Marketing Black Babies versus Recruiting Black Families: The Racialized Strategies Private Adoption Agencies Use to Find Homes for Black Babies

    By analyzing adoption websites, the author explores the racialized nature of the private adoption industry, beginning with a problem seemingly faced by many adoption professionals: finding homes for Black babies. By examining various approaches to this problem, the author identifies the racial projects engaged in by adoption professionals. Although most adoption websites reproduce racial hierarchies, websites that contest the racial system are also found.

  8. Sociology Faculty Members Employed Part-time in Community Colleges: Structural Disadvantage, Cultural Devaluation, and Faculty-Student Relationships

    The large majority of faculty members teaching in community colleges are employed on a part-time basis, yet little is known about their working conditions and professional engagement. This article uses data from a recent national survey of faculty members teaching sociology in community colleges to provide this information, with particular attention to the different situations of those teaching full-time, part-time by choice, and part-time involuntarily.

  9. How Do We Integrate Students Vocational Goals into Introduction to Sociology Curricula, and What Are the Effects of Doing So?

    President Obama’s America’s College Promise proposal has brought renewed attention to community colleges’ capacity to connect the college and career aspirations of today’s undergraduates. Despite this capacity, however, community colleges have historically offered students two distinct educational pathways: a liberal education transfer-oriented program or a terminal vocational program.

  10. Study Reveals Incarceration’s Hidden Wounds for African American Men

    There’s a stark and troubling way that incarceration diminishes the ability of a former inmate to empathize with a loved one behind bars, but existing sociological theories fail to capture it, Vanderbilt University sociologists have found.