News Release: People, Research

Sep. 14,  2011

Emory Sociologist to Study Racial Apathy

News Article ImageTyrone Forman

Tyrone Forman, an Emory University sociologist and co-director of the university’s Race and Difference Initiative, has won a prestigious fellowship from Stanford University, serving as a visiting fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) in Palo Alto, Calif., for the 2011-2012 academic year.

Forman is the first Emory sociologist to receive the CASBS fellowship, one of the oldest and most prestigious in the academy. Considered a career milestone, the fellowship recognizes those who have made significant scholarly contributions in their field and whose current work shows great intellectual promise.

At Stanford, Forman will research and write a book on the changing character of prejudice and racism in American society. Tentatively titled “Racial Apathy: Prejudice in Post-Racial America,” the book contests the popular idea that we are now a post-racial society and disputes the notion that racial prejudice is a thing of the past. Forman documents a new and growing form of racial prejudice—racial apathy—which includes a general disinterest in persistent racial inequalities as well as a lack of empathy toward the mistreatment of racial minorities. 

“My hope is that this book will help us to understand the changing dynamics of racial prejudice,” says Forman. “Racial apathy as a concept is more revealing of the real character of the world we are living in today. Twenty-first century racial prejudice may differ from 20th century expressions, but it is no less real or potent.” 

Forman is a nationally recognized expert on race relations, and as co-director of the university’s Race and Difference Initiative, he helps lead a campus-wide enterprise that seeks to foster new knowledge, teaching and public dialogue on race and intersecting dimensions of human difference.

He has published extensively in leading social science journals and serves as book review editor of the Du Bois Review: Social Science Research on Race, and on the editorial board of the journal Social Problems. His research also has received support from the Russell Sage Foundation, National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

CASBS Fellows Include Nobel Laureates, Pulitzer Prize Winners

CASBS has provided fellowships to more than 3,000 distinguished scholars in the social and behavioral sciences and humanities.

Former CASBS fellows include hundreds of members of the National Academy of Sciences, 22 Nobel Laureates, 14 Pulitzer Prize winners, 44 MacArthur Fellows, 22 recipients of the Bancroft Prize, 20 winners of the National Book Award and 21 recipients of the National Medal of Science.

“It is quite a professional honor for me and for Emory to be invited to join this prestigious and internationally renowned center,” says Forman.

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