Graduate Colloquium: Rachel Ellis (Sociology) and Jia Xue (SP2)

Friday, February 19, 2016 - 8:30am

Please join us on Friday, February 19 from 12pm-1:30pm in the Seminar Room at 3810 Walnut Street for our next graduate colloquium featuring Rachel Ellis (Sociology) and Jia Xue (SP2).

Rachel Ellis (Sociology)
"Daughters of Christ in the D.O.C.: Religion and Faith in a State Women's Prison"
Despite rising rates of women’s imprisonment in the U.S. mass incarceration era, scholars have not paid adequate attention to prison life among female inmates. I conducted 12 months of ethnographic fieldwork, interviews, and informal conversations with over 170 inmates, staff, and corrections officers in a state women’s prison to investigate the realities of contemporary prison life. Just as outside prison walls many women turn to religion in the face of hardship, I find that religion matters for incarcerated women in material, social, and adaptive ways. This study challenges theoretical conceptions of total institutions, which have long focused on authority, rules, and social order to examine the all-encompassing role of prison in the lives of prisoners, at the expense of social forces external to prison itself. Broader implications include reorienting how we understand life as an inmate in a total institution.

Jia Xue (SP2)
"Rape myths and the cross-cultural adaptation of the Illinois rape myth acceptance scale in China"
The author will discuss the similarities and differences between China and the United States with regards to rape myths. In order to assess the individual level of rape myth acceptance among Chinese university students, the authors adopted and translated into China a widely-used measure of rape myth endorsement in United States, the Illinois Rape Myth Acceptance (IRMA). The authors assessed whether the IRMA would be a useful assessment with young adults in China. The Chinese IRMA scale was completed by a sample of 975 students enrolled in seven Chinese universities.  The authors used explorative factor analysis to examine the factor structure of the Chinese translation of the IRMA scale. Results suggested the IRMA scale requires some modification to be employed with young adults in China. The analyses indicate that 20 items should be deleted and a five-factor model was generated. The author will discuss relevant similarities and differences of the factor structure and item loadings between the Chinese Rape Myth Acceptance (CRMA) and IRMA scales, and also discuss the implication of the study for future research.