Sociologists are interested in explaining why people behave, think,
and display emotions in the ways that they do. These were my own
interests from an early age, long before I heard of sociology. I was
trained as a social psychologist at the University of Iowa, where I
received a bachelor’s degree in sociology in 1974. I received a Ph.D.
in sociology from Duke University in 1978, with special areas of
interest in statistics, data processing, research methods, and social
inequality. I have been a faculty member at four universities:
University of Denver, University of Colorado Medical School, University
of Baltimore, and East Carolina University. At the latter two
universities I served as Chair of the Sociology Department.
My sociological interests are quite diverse, including medical sociology, mental health, health care professions, aging, sociological theory (classic and contemporary), and the fundamental societal institutions of economy, polity, education, and religion. I firmly believe that diversity in intellectual pursuits is essential to the continuing development of sociology as a scientific discipline, and I am pleased that our department at East Carolina University welcomes such diversity. Students who come here will find a very welcoming home.
Selected Publications and Papers
"Teaching, Tracking, and Marketing Our Product," American Sociologist. 1999. 30(1): 5-17 (with Jan Rienerth and Martin Schultz).
Life in a Business Oriented Society, Allyn and Bacon, 1998.
"The Impact of a Hospital Based Educational Program on Adolescent Attitudes toward Drinking and Driving." Journal of Drug Education, vol. 21, no. 4, 1991, pp. 349-59 (with Beverly Dearing and Joan Babin).
"Dimensions of Occupational Inequality and Duncan's Socioeconomic Index," Sociological Forum, vol. 4, no. 3, 1989, pp. 329-48.
"Interorganizational Influences on Mental Health Diagnoses: A Macro-Level Study of Labeling Processes," Sociological Perspectives, vol. 30, no. 2, 1987, pp. 180-200 (with John E. Holman).