Newly Tenured Faculty: Sarah Wilcox, Sociology

Sarah Wilcox, SociologyDiscipline

Courses taught
“Thinking Gender,” “Health Policy/Health Activism,” “Theories and Methods of Media Analysis,” “Medical Technologies”

Worst job
Cleaning out the moth cage as a summer work-study student for a biology professor

Little-known fact
I have an identical twin sister.

Favorite thing in your office
My books, and the view of trees and sky outside my third-floor window

Technology you can’t live without
My tablet laptop

What do you love about Sarah Lawrence students?
“I think students choose Sarah Lawrence because they want to have a say in the direction of their education. I enjoy nurturing that sense of ownership in my students.

“I also love how much of themselves and their own experiences students bring to their work. I had one student, for instance, who did a conference project on chronic pain. She had experienced chronic pain herself, and wanted to examine how people have written about it in memoirs and how social scientists have researched experiences of chronic pain. Another student did her dissertation on the history and politics of the menstrual cup. It sounds like an off-the-wall topic, but it has a lot to do with marketing and how medical technologies become successful. The topic also interweaves questions about feminism and ideology that were very relevant to her.”

Why do you think students enjoy taking your classes?
“Because sociology involves social issues, there are a lot of different ways students can engage with the material. Some students choose more directly sociological approaches, like doing library research or interviews or ethnography, but I also encourage students to approach the material through other forms of expression like art and creative work. I have had students write a play or analyze films or write poetry for their conference project, and I think students appreciate that about my classes.”