Media and Public Relations

Where Innovation Is Tradition

Media Sources Guide

CATEGORY: Society and CultureClear

SUB-CATEGORY: Family and YouthClear

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Amy Best

Associate Professor of Sociology

Expertise: Youth culture, proms, car culture, teens, social identity

Best is interested in the study of youth, culture and social inequalities.

She earned her PhD in Sociology in 1998 from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. She is author of "Prom Night: Youth, Schools and Popular Culture" (2000 Routledge), which was selected for the 2002 American Educational Studies Association Critics' Choice Award and "Fast Cars: Cool Rides: The Accelerating World of Youth and Their Cars" (NYU Press 2005) in addition to several articles and book chapters.

Media Contact: Michele McDonald, 703-993-8781,

Shannon Davis

Assistant Professor of Sociology

Expertise: Families, Adolescents, Division of household labor, Gender inequality

Davis' research focuses on the creation of families and the negotiation of family life.  Specifically, she is interested in how adolescents create and maintain relationships, how family members negotiate the intersection of paid and unpaid work in their daily lives, and how gender inequality is reproduced in families.

She also looks at the construction and maintenance of beliefs about gender, or gender ideologies.

Recent research has focused on testing the predictive power of theories on divorce, the division of household labor, and perceptions of fairness of the division of household labor using cross-national samples. 

Davis received her BA in Sociology in 1997 from the University of North Carolina at Asheville and her PhD in Sociology in 2004 from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at North Carolina State University.

Media Contact: Michele McDonald, 703-993-8781,

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Angela Hattery

Associate Director, Women and Gender Studies

Expertise: Domestic Violence, Intimate Partner Violence, Contemporary Families, Women and Gender Studies, African-American Families, Post-Obama America, Mass Incarceration, Exoneration

Angela J. Hattery earned her PhD in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her BA from Carleton College.  She has published eight books, including her newest, "The Social Dynamics of Family Violence" (Westview, Spring 2012). She can speak about all areas of domestic and intimate partner violence, including violence within same-sex couples, immigrants and Native Americans.

Hattery is also interested in examining the state of the African American community and African American Families in "post-racial," post-Obama America. She developed and co-taught an off-campus course, Social Stratification in the Deep South, which involves taking students on a three-week journey through Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi, exploring the continued effects of racism, classism, and sexism.  The course incorporates community experts and a service learning project. She has led students on Alternative Spring Break (Stephens, Arkansas) and International Service Trips (Calcutta, India).  



Media Contact: Michele McDonald, 703-993-8781,

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Linda J. Seligmann

Professor of Anthropology

Expertise: Adoption (International and Transracial), Andean Region of Latin America, Agrarian Issues, Shining Path Movement, Informal Economies, Quechua People

Seligmann is the author of the forthcoming book “Broken Links, Enduring Ties: American Adoption across Race, Class, and Nation” (Stanford University Press July 2013). She has done first-hand research and extensive interviews on families who have adopted children from China and Russia, and who have adopted African American children transracially. She can discuss the changing faces of American families, which constitutes a particular kind of immigration. In addition, she can also discuss women and work, specifically the participation of women in the informal economy.

Seligmann has worked in the Andean region of Latin America for more than twenty years.  She specializes in agrarian issues, Quechua culture and the dynamics of the informal economy. 

She received her PhD from the University of Illinois-Urbana in 1987.  She was associate director of the Center for Latin American and Iberian Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a faculty fellow in the Program in Agrarian Studies at Yale University before coming to George Mason. 

Seligmann is fluent in Spanish and Quechua. 

She has published political analyses in local and national newspapers and journals, including The Washington Post and the Latin American Studies Association Forum. 

Media Contact: Michele McDonald, 703-993-8781,