Frontiers - Society

  • April 2010

    After the Flood

    Graduate student Aaron Mulvany studies competing narratives of flood and recovery in South Indian coastal communities.

    In 2005, six months after a massive tsunami devastated South and Southeast Asia, South Asia Studies doctoral student Aaron Mulvany visited India’s Coromandel Coast, along the Bay of Bengal.

  • April 2010

    The Eyes of the People

    Political scientist Jeffrey Green challenges the notion of vox populi.

    We ordinarily think of democracy as the form of self-government in which ordinary citizens have a say in decisions that affect their lives. “We the People” are empowered, we generally assume, because we have a voice in elections and in public opinion through which are heard the vox populi.

  • February 2010

    The Economics of Peer Pressure

    Graduate student Seth Richards uses an economics framework to examine the effects of social norms on teen sexual activity.

    With teen pregnancy rates up for the first time in a decade and the Obama administration eliminating federal funding for abstinence-only sex-education programs, intense debates abound over how to delay and reduce teen sexual activity.

  • January 2010

    Addicted to Mammograms

    Penn professor Robert Aronowitz weighs in on the debate over new breast cancer screening guidelines.

    Last fall, the United St

  • December 2009

    Healing Africa

    Anthropology student looks at women's involvement in spiritual healing.

    When Christy Schuetze joined the Peace Corps in 1998 and set off for Mozambique to teach English, people familiar with Africa warned her: “Be careful, you’ll never come back.”

  • November 2009

    The Obama Presidency: Assessing Year One

    Political Science faculty consider the accomplishments of the Obama administration one year after a history-making election.

    Regardless of their positions on the political spectrum, Obama observers can

  • October 2009

    A New Baby Boom?

    Demographer Hans-Peter Kohler sees a rise in fertility in highly developed countries.

    One of the most established and accepted standards in the social sciences is that human fertility levels tend to decline as countries advance toward higher levels of social and economic development.

  • September 2009

    Next Door But Invisible: The World of Homelessness and Drug Addiction

    Penn medical anthropologist Philippe Bourgois and UC grad student Jeff Schonberg study the lives of homeless heroin addicts in San Francisco.

    For over a decade, medical anthropologist Philippe Bourgois and his grad student Jeff Schonberg studied the lives of homeless heroin addicts as they scrambled to survive on the streets of San Francisco.

  • August 2009

    Therapeutic Benefits and Risks

    Anthropologist Adriana Petryna charts the expansion of the global clinical trials industry.

    In her new book, When Experiments Travel: Clinical Trials and the Global Search for Human Subjects, Associate Professor of Anthropology Adriana Petryna takes as her subject the recent history and current state of the clinical trials industry.

  • August 2009

    Reality Check for Checklists

    Sociologist Charles Bosk analyzes the effectiveness of checklists in patient safety.

    Can simple solutions ensure the safety of medical procedures? Sociology professor Charles Bosk cautions that the nexus of science, technology and culture in the healthcare setting is anything but simple.