Phone Number
Email Address
Ace 232
Social Science 102
Office / Division / Concentration


PhD, Sociology, Indiana University
MA, Sociology, Indiana University
BA, with honors, Sociology and Psychology, Purdue University

Professor Fairchild’s main sociological interests stem from questions about how individual lives and societal-level issues relate to one another, with a focus on gender. Her work on the connections between people and society gives much attention to how folks make meaning for themselves and in interaction with others. How do we come to “be” a self? How do we figure out who we are and who others are in relation to one another? What power do we have to affect the social context that constrains these sense-making processes?

Professor Fairchild’s past research explored examined college athletes’ gender presentations, gendered rituals in weddings and commitment ceremonies, the role of the body in maintaining and challenging institutionalized understandings, and gender representation in children’s books.

Her current work is grounded in New College student culture, which she finds can inform scholars on the effects of shifting understandings and norms around gender. She centers the voices of trans and gender non-conforming students as she write about what students report makes an inclusive culture (as well as what doesn’t).

Recent Courses

Sociological Research Methods
Contemporary Gender Seminar
Queer Studies
Sociology of Family
Sociology of Gender and the Body
Social Psychology
Higher Education and Inequality

Selected Publications

Fairchild, Emily. 2021. “Shifting Understanding, Creating Inclusive College Culture.” In Advances in Gender Research Vol 32: Trans Studies. Austin Johnson, Baker Rogers, and Tiffany Taylor, Eds. Emerald Publishing.

Fairchild, Emily and Elizabeth Gregg. 2020. “‘We Wear So Little’: Collegiate Gymnasts’ Reflections on their Uniforms,” Pp. 205-216 in Sportswomen’s Apparel in the United States: Uniformly Discussed. Linda Fuller, Ed. London: Palgrave MacMillan.

Fairchild, Emily and Suzanna Crage. 2014. “Beyond the Debates: Measuring and Specifying Student Consumerism,” Sociological Spectrum 34,5:403-20.

Fairchild, Emily. 2014. “Examining Wedding Rituals through a Multi-Dimensional Gender Lens: The Analytic Importance of Attending to (In)consistency” Journal of Contemporary Ethnography 43,3:361-89.

Janice McCabe, Emily Fairchild, Liz Grauerholz, Bernice Pescosolido, and Daniel Tope. 2011. “Gender in Twentieth-Century Children’s Books: Patterns of Disparity in Titles and Central Characters.” Gender & Society 25,2:197-226.

Reprinted in: The Kaleidoscope of Gender: Prisms, Patterns, and Possibilities, 4th edition. Edited by Joan Z. Spade and Catherine G. Valentine. Sage, 2014.

Fairchild, Emily. 2006. “‘I’m Excited to be Married but…’: Romance and Realism in Marriage” Pp. 3-19 in Couples, Kids, and Family Life. Jaber Gubrium and James Holstein, Eds. New York: Oxford University Press.