Ph.D. University of California Davis, 2004
As a scholar of stratification, health and illness, and carework my research focuses on how social inequality manifests (and is reproduced) in the context of interaction between healthcare providers and their patients. I have written extensively on the emotional labor associated with the work of low-skilled nursing aides and the way in which fictive kinship ties with elderly and disabled clients exacerbate the inequalities aides face on the job. On the other end of the medical hierarchy, I also research how highly trained physicians such as oncologists and palliative care specialists communicate across the many cultural, racial/ethnic and socioeconomic divides between providers and patients. My projects are linked by an overarching interest in how medical relationshipsâ€”whether the professionalized, detached care of an oncologist for her terminal patient or the hands on care of a young nursing aide bathing an elderly manâ€”perpetuate inequalities associated with race, class and gender. I have a forthcoming book on low-paid healthcare work (The Caring Self: The Work Experiences of Home Care Aides, ILR/Cornell University Press) and have also published in the Sociology of Health and Illness, Social Science and Medicine and the Journal of Healthcare for the Poor and Underserved.