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  1. 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.

  2. Capturing Culture: A New Method to Estimate Exogenous Cultural Effects Using Migrant Populations

    We know that culture influences people’s behavior. Yet estimating the exact extent of this influence poses a formidable methodological challenge for the social sciences. This is because preferences and beliefs are endogenous, that is, they are shaped by individuals’ own experiences and affected by the same macro-structural conditions that constrain their actions. This study introduces a new method to overcome endogeneity problems in the estimation of cultural effects by using migrant populations.

  3. "A Quintessentially American Thing?": The Unexpected Link between Individualistic Values and the Sense of Personal Control

    A popular image of Americans is that they are among the most individualistic people on the planet. This long-standing myth has informed theorizing about the sense of control and its relevance for stress and mental health. Prior claims have suggested that differences based on individualistic and collectivistic values contribute to group differences in the sense of control. We analyze data from the World Values Survey to test this hypothesis, focusing on a comparison of Americans and individuals in East Asian societies.

  4. Depressive Symptoms and Electronic Messaging with Health Care Providers

    Recent health policies encourage electronic messaging with providers to potentially improve health care. It is unclear whether the same potential exists for individuals with mental health symptoms. Whereas these individuals appear interested in such technologies, they may also be concerned about privacy and security risks. To clarify this ambiguity, we conceptualize electronic messaging as an impression management tool for individuals with depressive symptoms, who risk devaluation from others.

  5. The "Work" of Workplace Mental Health: An Institutional Ethnography

    This article employs institutional ethnography (IE) inclusive of its distinctive epistemological stance to elucidate the institutional organization of the everyday work experience of the employee living with self-reported depression. The study was conducted within a large industrial manufacturing plant in Ontario, Canada.

  6. Health Insurance Status and Symptoms of Psychological Distress among Low-income Urban Women

    Although numerous studies have considered the effects of having health insurance on access to health care, physical health, and mortality risk, the association between insurance coverage and mental health has been surprisingly understudied. Building on previous work, we use data collected from a two-year follow-up of low-income women living in Boston, Chicago, and San Antonio to estimate a series of latent fixed-effects regression models assessing the association between insurance status and symptoms of psychological distress.

  7. Vintage Wine in New Bottles: Infusing Select Ideas into the Study of Immigration, Immigrants, and Mental Health

    The metaphor vintage wine in new bottles imagines how ideas from immigration studies, social psychology, and cultural sociology add novel insights about how the social context and social relationships of immigrant lives are linked to well-being. This article describes a few patterns in research studies that have addressed whether immigrants have higher or lower rates of mental health problems than their U.S.-born counterparts. It discusses a few past approaches to explain the differences in mental health outcomes.

  8. Cross-border Ties as Sources of Risk and Resilience: Do Cross-border Ties Moderate the Relationship between Migration-related Stress and Psychological Distress for Latino Migrants in the United States?

    Few studies have examined the associations between health and the cross-border ties that migrants maintain with their family members in communities of origin. We draw on theory related to social ties, ethnic identity, and mental health to examine cross-border ties as potential moderators of the association between migration-related stress and psychological distress among Latino migrants.

  9. Statement of the American Sociological Association Concerning the New Administration’s Recent and Future Activities

    Against the background of events that have unfolded over the last week, we are writing today to let you know that ASA is monitoring events carefully, has responded to some developments already, and will continue to respond in the future. And we welcome and need your help with this effort.

  10. Racial Differences in Depression Trajectories among Older Women: Socioeconomic, Family, and Health Influences

    Despite recent increases in life course research on mental illness, important questions remain about the social patterning of, and explanations for, depression trajectories among women in later life. The authors investigate competing theoretical frameworks for the age patterning of depressive symptoms and the physical health, socioeconomic, and family mechanisms differentiating black and white women.