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Book Details

  • Paperback
  • Bookstore's Wholesale Price: $13.11
  • January 2015
  • ISBN: 978-0-393-92040-6
  • 224 pages
  • Territory Rights: Worldwide

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  1. Sociology


The Society Pages


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Douglas Hartmann (Editor, University of Minnesota), Christopher Uggen (Editor, University of Minnesota)


An introduction to the new social science of debt.

With contributions from leading scholars and a provocative collection of discussion topics and group activities, this innovative series provides an accessible and affordable entry point for strong sociological perspectives on topics of immediate social import and public relevance.

The fourth volume in the series, Owned, addresses the new social science of debt. “Core Contributions” pieces show how sociologists and other social scientists make sense of phenomena like student loans and court fees. Chapters in the “Cultural Contexts” section engage debt through cultural realms—ranging from Detroit’s crumbling infrastructure to global climate debt—that are often ignored or taken for granted. Finally, the “Critical Takes” chapters provide sociological commentary and reflection on credit, debt, and the American Dream.


A brief and accessible introduction, placed in the context of recent research

Every volume in The Society Pages series follows the same structure. “Core Contributions” contains a set of chapters by sociologists writing about core concepts and ideas from the discipline. “Cultural Contexts” essays show students how the sociological imagination can reveal aspects of social life usually taken for granted. “Critical Takes” essays highlight sociology’s critical approach to social problems and reveal sociology’s impulse toward social action and change. A Discussion Guide at the end of the volume includes questions and activities, created by the editors. 

A selection of "greatest hits" from The Society Pages website

Intended to translate the most exciting research for readers not trained as sociologists, The Society Pages website features dynamic articles, podcasts, blogs, and roundtable discussions on the topics students care about most. Prominent sociologists contribute articles and participate in interviews that synthesize their cutting-edge research into brief pieces that anyone can understand. Each volume in the series collects the best of the web content into thematic collections, in an affordable paperback format.  

Changing Lenses

Changing Lenses is the product of an ongoing conversation between sociologist (and Society Pages co-editor) Doug Hartmann and photographer Wing Young Huie. In each essay, they exchange what's seen behind a camera lens and what's seen through a sociological lens to get at the diversity of perspectives and cultivate a unique look at the human experience.  

    Introduction (Douglas Hartmann and Christopher Uggen)

    Changing Lenses: Debt, Foreclosure, and a Little Help from Your Friends (Douglas Hartmann and Wing Young Huie)

    Part 1: Core Contributions
    1. Has Borrowing Replaced Earning? (Kevin Leicht)
    2. Out of the Nest and into the Red (Jason N. Houle)
    3. The Cruel Poverty of Monetary Sanctions (Alexes Harris)
    4. Looking into the Racial Wealth Gap with Dalton Conley, Rachel Dwyer, and Karyn Lacy (Erin Hoekstra)
    Tie-In: Object Debt, Subjective Inequality

    Part 2: Cultural Contexts
    5. Students Squeezed by an Hourglass Economy (Robert Crosnoe)
    6. Debt and Darkness in Detroit (David Schalliol)
    7. Andrew Ross on the Anti-Debt Movement (Erin Hoekstra)
    8. Of Carbon and Cash (Erin Hoekstra)
    Tie-In: The Not-So-Alternative Media Picture

    Part 3: Critical Takes
    9. Economic Decline and the American Dream (Kevin Leicht)
    10. Are Some Universities Too Big to Fail? (Eric Best)
    11. Pension Fund Capitalism with G. William Domhoff (Rahsaan Mahadeo)
    12. Old Narratives and New Realities (Kevin Leicht)
    Tie-In: Deeper in Debt

    Discussion Guide and Group Exercises