Aliya Saperstein

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:

  • The relationship between individual-level racial fluidity and the maintenance of group boundaries, racial stereotypes and hierarchies.
  • The implications of methodological decisions, especially the measurement of race and ethnicity in surveys, for studies of stratification and health disparities.

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.


Curriculum Vitæ
Email Aliya Saperstein


Race and ethnicity; inequality and mobility; health disparities; social demography.


Recent Papers and Book Chapters:


  • 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.

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