Professor Saperstein received her B.A. in Sociology from the University of Washington and her Ph.D. in Sociology and Demography from the University of California-Berkeley. She previously taught at the University of Oregon.
Her research focuses on the social processes through which people come to perceive, name and deploy “racial” differences -- in public discourse, academic research and their everyday lives -- and their consequences for explaining, and reinforcing, social inequality. Her current research projects explore two strands of this subject:
This research has been published for sociological audiences in the American Journal Sociology and the Annual Review of Sociology, among other venues, and for general science audiences in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and PLoS One.
Race and ethnicity; inequality and mobility; health disparities; social demography.
Recent Papers and Book Chapters:
- Saperstein, Aliya and Aaron Gullickson. In press. “A Mulatto Escape Hatch? Examining Evidence of U.S. Racial and Social Mobility in the Jim Crow Era.” Demography.
- Saperstein, Aliya, Andrew M. Penner and Ryan Light. 2013. “Racial Formation in Perspective: Connecting Individuals, Institutions and Power Relations.” Annual Review of Sociology, volume 39: 359–378.
Penner, Andrew M. and Aliya Saperstein. 2013. “Engendering Racial Perceptions: An Intersectional Analysis of How Social Status Shapes Race.” Gender & Society 27(3): 319-44.
- Mayrl, Damon and Aliya Saperstein. 2013. “When White People Report Racial Discrimination: The Role of Region, Religion and Politics.” Social Science Research 42(3): 742-54.
- Saperstein, Aliya and Andrew M. Penner. 2012. “Racial Fluidity and Inequality in the United States.” American Journal of Sociology 118(3): 676-727. *2013 Roger V. Gould Prize winner, American Journal of Sociology*
- Saperstein, Aliya. 2012. “Capturing Complexity in the United States: Which Aspects of Race Matter and When?” Ethnic and Racial Studies 35(8): 1484-1502.
- Freeman, Jonathan, Andrew M. Penner, Aliya Saperstein, Matthias Scheutz and Nalini Ambady. 2011. “Looking the Part: Social Status Cues Shape Race Perception.” PLoS One 6(9): e25107.
- Noymer, Andrew, Andrew M. Penner and Aliya Saperstein. 2011. “Cause of Death Affects Racial Classification on Death Certificates.” PLoS One 6(1): e15812.
- Saperstein, Aliya and Andrew M. Penner. 2010. “The Race of a Criminal Record: How Incarceration Colors Racial Perceptions.” Social Problems 57: 92-113.
Saperstein, Aliya. 2009. “Different Measures, Different Mechanisms: A New Perspective on Racial Disparities in Health Care.” Research in the Sociology of Health Care 27: 21-45.
- Penner, Andrew M. and Aliya Saperstein. 2008. “How Social Status Shapes Race.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 105(50): 19628-30.
- Saperstein, Aliya. 2008. “(Re)Modeling Race: Moving From Intrinsic Characteristic to Multidimensional Marker of Status.” Pp. 335-50 in Racism in Post-Race America: New Theories, New Directions, ed. Charles Gallagher. Social Forces Publishing.
Saperstein, Aliya. 2006. “Double-Checking the Race Box: Examining Inconsistency Between Survey Measures of Observed and Self-Reported Race.” Social Forces 85(1): 57-74.