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The Matrix of Race

The Matrix of Race
Social Construction, Intersectionality, and Inequality

First Edition

October 2017 | 480 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

The authors are proud sponsors of the 2020 SAGE Keith Roberts Teaching Innovations Award—enabling graduate students and early career faculty to attend the annual ASA pre-conference teaching and learning workshop.

The Matrix of Race: Social Construction, Intersectionality, and Inequality is a textbook that makes race and racial inequality “visible” in new ways to all students in race/ethnic relations courses, regardless of their backgrounds–from minorities who have experienced the impact of race in their own lives to members of dominant groups who might believe that we now live in a “color blind” society. The “matrix” refers to a way of thinking about race that reflects the intersecting, multilayered identities of contemporary society, and the powerful social institutions that shape our understanding of race. Its goals are to help readers get beyond familiar “us vs. them” arguments that can lead to resistance and hostility; promote self-appraisal; and stimulate more productive discussions about race and racism.

Free Poster: Making Race and Racial Inequality Visible in New Ways 

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Chapter 1. Race and the Social Construction of Difference
The Social Construction of Race

The Social Matrix of Race

The Operation of Racism

Our Stories

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 2. The Shaping of a Nation: The Social Construction of Race in America
Race Today: Adapting and Evolving

Indigenous Peoples: The Americas before Columbus

Discovery and Encounters: The Shaping of Our Storied Past

The U.S. Matrix and Intersectionality— Where Do We Go from Here?

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 3. The Social Construction and Regulation of Families
Historical Regulation of the Family

Family Inequality Theories

Family Inequality through the Matrix Lens

Transforming the Ideal Family Narrative

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 4. Work and Wealth Inequality
Recent Trends in Work and Wealth

Theories of Economic Inequality

Applying the Matrix to the History of Economic Inequality in the United States

Transforming the Story of Race and Economic Inequality

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 5. Health, Medicine, and Health Care
Patterns of Inequality in Health and Health Care

Theorizing Inequality in Health and Health Care

Applying the Matrix to Health Inequity and Inequality

Resisting and Transforming Inequality in Health and Health Care

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 6. Education
The Shaping of the Matrix of U.S. Education

Theories of Education

Examining the Concealed Story of Race and Education through the Matrix

Alternative Educational Movements and the Future of Education

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 7. Crime, Law, and Deviance
A History of Race, Crime, and Punishment

Sociological Stock Theories of Crime and Deviance

Applying the Matrix to Crime and Deviance

Transforming the Narrative of Race, Crime, and Deviance

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 8. Power, Politics, and Identities
Contemporary Political Identities

Critiquing Sociological Theories of Power, Politics, and Identity

Applying the Matrix of Race to U.S. Political History

Building Alternatives to the Matrix of Race and Politics

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 9. Sports and the American Dream
The State of Sport Today

Examining Stock Sociological Theories of Sport

Applying the Matrix to Sports in the United States

Creating a New Playing Field

Key Terms

Chapter Summary

Chapter 10. The Military, War, and Terrorism
Class, Gender, and Race in the U.S. Military

Military Sociology Stock Theories

Applying the Matrix Approach to U.S. Military History, War, and Terrorism

A More Inclusive Future

Key Terms

Chapter Summary



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Rodney D. Coates

Rodney D. Coates is a Professor in the Department of Sociology and Gerontology at Miami University (Ohio) and Director of the university’s Black World Studies program. He specializes in the study of race and ethnic relations, inequality, critical race theory, and social justice. He has served on the editorial boards of the American Sociological Review; Social Forces; and Race, Class and Gender; on the executive boards of the Southern Sociological Society and Sociologists without Borders; and as Chair of the American Sociological Association’s section on Race and Ethnic Minorities. Rodney has published dozens of articles... More About Author

Abby Loren Ferber

Abby L. Ferber is Professor of Sociology and Director of Women's Studies at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, where she teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses on race, gender, and social theory. She is the author of White Man Falling: Race, Gender and White Supremacy (Rowman & Littlefield), and co-author of the American Sociological Associations' Hate Crime in America: What Do We Know?. She is also the co-author of, Making a Difference: University Students of Color Speak Out, (Rowman & Littlefield), and a co-editor of Privilege: A Reader, (Westview Press) with Michael Kimmel.... More About Author

David Lynn Brunsma

David L. Brunsma is Professor of Sociology at Virginia Tech where he teaches and researches in the areas of race, racism, multiracial identity, and human rights. He is the author of Beyond Black: Biracial Identity in America (Roman & Littlefield), A Symbolic Crusade: The School Uniform Movement and What it Tells Us About American Education (Rowman & Littlefield Education) and The Handbook of Sociology and Human Rights (Routledge). His work has appeared in American Teacher Magazine, Principal Magazine, and The Audio Journal of Education. David is the founding co-editor of the journal ... More About Author

Also available as a South Asia Edition.

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ISBN: 9781452202693