Ph.D., UC Berkeley, 2006
Areas of Research Interest:
Poverty, Inequality, Rural Communities, Gender, Family, Culture.
Current Research Interests:
My research looks at the interactions of economic conditions, cultural norms, and family outcomes, particularly in rural areas. I focus on families experiencing poverty and low incomes in order to understand the ways in which their choices and decisions are impacted by economic constraints and community contexts. I pay particular attention to symbolic boundaries based on moral understandings, which are significant in organizing social life and influencing behaviors in cohesive communities. Through qualitative methods including in-depth interviews and ethnography, I have investigated issues facing families in a Northern California timber community; rural and urban communities in New England; and agricultural communities in the Pacific Northwest. My current and future research will continue to look at the connections between structural conditions, cultural discourses, and family lives, particularly for the residents of homogenous, cohesive, and rural communities that have experienced labor market and economic upheavals.
Sherman, Jennifer. 2009. Those Who Work, Those Who Don’t: Poverty, Morality, and Family in Rural America. Minnesota: University of Minnesota Press.
Sherman, Jennifer and Rayna Sage. 2011. “‘Sending Off All Your Good Treasures’: Rural Schools, Brain-Drain, and Community Survival in the Wake of Economic Collapse.” Journal of Research in Rural Education 26(11): 1-14.
Sherman, Jennifer. 2011. “Home Improvement: Supporting, Empowering, and Controlling Parents.” International Journal of Sociology of the Family 37(1): 105-130.
Sherman, Jennifer. 2011. “Men Without Sawmills: Job Loss and Gender Identity in Rural America.” Chapter 4 in Economic Restructuring and Family Well-Being in Rural America, Kristin Smith and Ann Tickamyer, editors. University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University Press: 82-102.
Sherman, Jennifer. 2009. “Bend to Avoid Breaking: Job Loss, Gender Norms, and Family Stability in Rural America.” Social Problems 56(4): 599-620.
Sherman, Jennifer. 2006. “Coping with Rural Poverty: Economic Survival and Moral Capital in Rural America.” Social Forces, 85(2): 891-913.
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