Sociology Ph.D Candidate

About Me

I am a doctoral candidate in the Department of Sociology at Indiana University. I received my M.A. from Indiana University in 2012 for research concerning public opinion on government spending (minor: Social Research Methods). Before that, I earned my B.A. in Sociology and Women’s Studies (minors: Global Studies and English), where I graduated with Honors and the distinction of “The Outstanding Senior in the College of Liberal Arts.”

My recent research interests lie in the intersection of family, social psychology, and politics. My Dissertation focuses on the children of transgender individuals; particularly, their experiences during their parent’s transitioning, the unique challenges they face, and how they cope with these challenges.

Other current research projects examine changing portrayals of children in mass media from 1925-2006, the association between relationship tenure and traditionalism, and the construction of music festival vendor communities.

Outside of academia, I enjoy traveling, dancing (Ballroom, Latin, and social), watching old movies, and spending time with my loved ones.

Current Projects

“Innocence Lost? Changing Portrayals of Children, 1925-2006” (with Jessica Calarco)

Abstract: The last century has witnessed remarkable changes in the lives of American families. Yet while children have been a central focus of the literature on such changes, research on shifting attitudes towards children is lacking. Following scholarship emphasizing humor as a particularly sensitive indicator of social attitudes, I utilize New Yorker cartoons from 1925-2006 to explore how the substantive nature of popular images of children have changed throughout the 21st century. Inductive analyses indicate that in earlier years, portrayals of innocent children and concerns with controlling the behavior of children make up nearly half of all cartoons. In later years, depictions of children are more varied, presenting children in educational settings, as an obstacle to parents’ personal and occupational freedom, and as victims of parents’ lifestyle decisions and negligence. Findings underscore the importance of empirical exploration for understanding the changing expectations of, roles of, and attitudes towards children in the United States.

“Partnership Duration and Household Division of Labor” (with Rebecca Grady and Jamie Oslawski-Lopez)

Abstract: Much of the current literature on family division of labor looks to spousal overwork, the transition from cohabitation to marriage, differing expectations of mothers and fathers, and unsupportive social institutions as reasons for the persistence of traditional gender arrangements. Less examined in this literature is the simpler question of whether partner relationships just become more traditional over time. Employing longitudinal analyses and drawing from gender and life course literatures, we explore the effect partnership duration has on shaping the work-family lives of men and women.

“A 'Community by Need': Structural Vulnerability and Interdependence Among Music Festival Vendors”

Abstract: Mainstream theoretical conceptions of community presuppose locality, cooperation, and/or sustained interaction. Missing each of these components is a collection of transient vendors who spend the summers traveling from music festival to music festival selling handmade, fair trade, and import goods. Using field notes and in-depth interviews with music vendors collected in the summer of 2013, I demonstrate how, despite the absence of usual community-sustaining factors, these individuals have developed a tight-knit community marked by strong norms and social support. I argue that these ties are possible because the structural vulnerability of vendors creates interdependencies among them; they are a community by need. This paper contributes to scholarship on community, group process, and coping, demonstrating how a sense of community can be fostered in the most unlikely of places.

Curriculum Vitae

Please contact me for the latest copy of my CV.

Teaching

Indiana University - Bloomington

Sociology 100: Introduction to Sociology

Sociology 370: Social Research Methods (Lab)

Contact Info

Indiana University
Department of Sociology
747 Ballantine Hall
Bloomington, IN 47405
jtabor@indiana.edu