SSSI 2021 Annual Meeting in Chicago, IL – Call for Papers

Call for Papers

2021 Annual Meeting


Chicago, IL

August 5-8, 2021

The SSSI program planning committee is pleased to issue this call for papers that address this year’s theme or engage with any aspect of symbolic interaction.

“Socialization and Inequalities across the Life Course: New Directions for Interactionist Scholarship.”

The study of socialization processes — a central topic of research across distinct theoretical traditions in sociology in the mid-20th century — became a somewhat neglected research agenda in more recent decades due largely to widely shared criticisms of the concept of socialization itself (Guhin, Calarco, and Miller-Idriss 2020). But there is a growing body of research among scholars who see socialization as fruitfully salvageable. This scholarship implicates socialization processes across the life course in the dynamic reproduction of inequalities by race and ethnicity, social class, and gender and sexuality (e.g., Calarco 2018; Olsen 2019; Reyes 2018). This research is timely as it reveals key ways that socialization can contribute to various forms of race and class inequalities at a time when we are seeing global efforts to promote anti-racism and address persistent inequalities. In addition, scholars are examining how socialization animates social reproduction processes in ways that provide insights into how culture is produced in everyday life and routine interactions. Much of this work is firmly rooted in the symbolic interactionist tradition (e.g., Everitt 2018; Jenkins 2020; Nunn 2014; Vinson 2019).  Indeed, symbolic interactionist scholars offered an important contemporary alternative to functionalist studies of socialization in the mid-20th century, and now symbolic interaction is well-positioned to be a key part of a resurgence in socialization research and a conceptual reconsideration of socialization. Such a resurgence and reconsideration have the opportunity to bring socialization research into dialogue with two key areas of interest in mainstream sociology: social inequality and culture.     

We are especially interested in papers and complete sessions (3-4 papers) that engage with this conference theme by examining the role of socialization in reproducing or challenging inequalities by race and ethnicity, or the role socialization plays in racialization processes. We also welcome papers and complete sessions that engage with the conference theme including, but not limited to, topics such as:

Race, Microaggressions, and Implicit Biases                   Social Stratification & Social Class Gender Diversity and Identities                                       Anti-racism and Pedagogy

Cultural Transmission                                                           Organizations and Work      Healthcare and Health Inequalities               Selves and Identities              

Education and Formal Schooling                                Aging and Life Course Transitions

As always, we welcome and will accept papers that deal with any aspects of symbolic interactionism, including theory, methods, teaching, and SI analyses of all topics.           

Submission Process:

Please make your submission to the conference organizers by sending the following information to

Deadline for submissions is February 26, 2021.

Paper Title

Abstract (maximum 250 words)

Author(s) Name(s) and Institutional Affiliation(s)

Contact email and phone number

Inquiries and questions can be directed to Judson Everitt at or the email above.

Registration and Membership:

All members will be required to be members of SSSI at the time of the conference. Information about membership and registration will follow.

Program Planning Committee:

Judson Everitt, Vice President SSSI, Loyola University Chicago (Chair)

Tim Hallett, Past-Vice President SSSI, Indiana University

Lisa-Jo van den Scott, Vice President Elect SSSI, Memorial University of Newfoundland

Stephanie Peña-Alves, Treasurer SSSI, Rutgers University

Stacey Hannem, Chair SSSI Committee on Diversity and Inclusion, Wilfrid Laurier University

Patrick McGinty, Past-President SSSI, Western Illinois University

Download CfP as PDF

About Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction - Blog

The Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction (SSSI) is an international professional organization of scholars interested in the study of a wide range of social issues with an emphasis on identity, everyday practice, and language.
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