Justin is a Sociology Ph.D. candidate at the University of Notre Dame. His areas of specialization include Cultural Sociology, Social Movements and Collective Behavior, Social Psychology/Microsociology, Qualitative Methods, Social Control/Deviance, and the Sociology of Religion. Broadly conceived, Justin’s publications have been focused on issues related to cognition and emotion, interaction and information-transmission, and social and cultural stasis and change.
His current research focuses on surprising situations where people who would otherwise be completely supportive of a cause might find themselves experiencing sudden shifts in cognition and emotion which radically alters their judgments. Drawing on his in-depth ethnography with an activist religious movement, he explains how objects can have multiple meanings and skew judgments and interactions in situ, depending upon how the audience creates meaning. By focusing on variation in potential meanings, he reveals the pathways through which judgments are formed and the consequences for decision-making and information-transmission through interaction. More generally, his research reveals how and when situations become problematic for some audiences but not for others and the consequences of this variation.
Justin’s research has appeared in the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, Sociological Theory, Thesis Eleven, Journal of Classical Sociology, Blackwell Companion to Social Movements, and the Handbook of Contemporary Sociological Theory. He also serves as an occasional reviewer for the American Sociological Review, Mobilization: An International Journal, The Sociological Quarterly, Sociological Perspectives, and others.
In addition, he has instructed Introduction to Social Psychology, conducted and supervised research for the Fourth Wave of the National Study of Youth and Religion, and assisted teaching with guest lectures for Social Problems and Social Psychology. Justin has given numerous presentations related to his ongoing dissertation research and is an active affiliate of Notre Dame’s Center for the Study of Social Movements, Center for the Study of Religion and Society, and the Sociology Department’s Culture Workshop. He is also a contributing editor at Mobilizing Ideas.