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Michelle Newton-Francis

Assistant Professor
Department of Sociology

  • Dr. Newton-Francis is a cultural sociologist whose research and teaching interests lie at the intersection of the production and reception of popular culture, work and labor, and body and embodiment.

    From 2010-2012 she served as council member and chair of the graduate best paper award for the section on the Sociology of Body and Embodiment with the American Sociological Association. She has also been a member of the editorial board of Teaching Sociology. In the department of sociology, she chairs the communications committee and has served on the special events, undergraduate, and graduate committees.

    She has worked as an applied sociologist on several federally funded programs by the U.S. Department of Justice and has consulted on numerous government and private projects. Additionally, she has served as consultant to several four-year academic institutions on online learning and accelerated degree completion programs. At AU, she has designed and taught two online courses (the first in the department).

    Dr. Newton-Francis regularly teaches U.S. Society and courses on social problems and social research. The fall 2014 is her fourth year teaching U.S. Society in the University College program.

  • Degrees

    PhD, Sociology, American University
    MA, Applied Sociology, Old Dominion University
    BS, Criminal Justice, Old Dominion University

  • CAS - Sociology
  • Battelle Tompkins - T-16
  • M and Th 11-1 pm

  • (202) 885-2485 (Office)
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  • To request an interview for a
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    at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.

Partnerships & Affiliations

  • American Sociological Association

    Member since 1995


  • Spring 2014

    • SOCY-394 Comm Service Learning Project: Social Prob in Changing World
    • Description
  • Summer 2014

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Research Interests

Core Research Areas: Popular Culture; Deviance (with emphasis on stigma); Sociology of Culture; Gender; Cultural Criminology



Honors, Awards, and Fellowships

In 2008, Dr. Newton-Francis received the Women’s Leadership Award from the Appalachian College Association for her dissertation work.

Dr. Newton-Francis was also appointed a John B. Stephenson Dissertation Fellow (Mellon) by the Appalachian College Association.




Selected Publications

2014. “‘¡Más que un Bocado!/More than a Mouthful:’ Comparing the Cultural Representations of Hooters in the US and Colombia” [with Salvador Vidal-Ortiz], for The Body in a Global World, Afshan Jafar and    Erynn Masi de Casanova (Editors) Palgrave MacMillan Press.

2009. “Yes, We Have Some Bananas: Politics and Development in the Eastern Caribbean.” (with Steve Hamilton) Contexts, 8: 52-57.

2009. “Criminal Justice Research and Practice: Diverse Voices from the Field.” By Susan L. Miller. Contemporary Sociology, 2: 236-237.

2008. “Adult Degree Completion Students’ Satisfaction with a College’s Support Services: Identifying Areas of Improvement.” (with Don Caudill) Global Education Journal, 3: 120-135.

2008. “Deviance and Race.” (with Steve Hamilton) Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity, and Society, Richard T. Schaefer, editor. Sage Publications. 

Professional Services

Newton-Francis has several years of experience as a research associate.  She recently served as a research associate on the Cops in Schools Training Program which is funded by the Office of Community Oriented Policing at the Department of Justice.