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Sociologist Michele Rossi to discuss the social mobility of teenage girls in the U.S., on November 14, 2012.

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY —  Michele L. Rossi, a PhD. candidate in the sociology department of the University of California-Berkeley, will deliver the lecture “Sociably Sufficing: Girls, White Middle-Class Culture, and the Contemporary Reproduction of Inequality,” on Wednesday, November 14, at 5:30pm in Taylor Hall room 203. Free and open to the public, this event is sponsored by the Department of Sociology.
Rossi asserts that, “In explaining the reproduction of inequalities in the contemporary United States, scholars tend to focus on the attitudes and practices of, and cultural and material resources available to, members of groups situated toward the top or bottom of the country’s socioeconomic hierarchy. This tendency is especially pronounced in the study of adolescents navigating educational opportunities.”

In this talk, she will in contrast focus on the attitudes and practices of a group whose material and cultural endowments locate them in the “mainstream” of U.S. society.  Drawing on observations of and interviews with college-bound, white middle-class girls in their final year of study at a well-funded suburban high school, Rossi shows that these self-proclaimed “slackers” and “regular kids” embrace a culture of “sociably sufficing,” in which they distance themselves from upper-middle-class “overachievers” and working-class and poor “losers” alike.

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Vassar College is located at 124 Raymond Avenue in Poughkeepsie, NY, and directions to the campus can be found at http://www.vassar.edu/directions.

Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential, liberal arts college founded in 1861.

Posted by Office of Communications Friday, November 9, 2012