cropped-Celine-Marie-Pascale-140620b-1-270x270Professor Celine – Marie Pascale is a leading scholar in the field of language and society.  Her research examines how language and representation are used to create and normalize systemic inequalities.  Pascale’s scholarship on the relationship between systems of signification and social/economic inequalities has been acknowledged with national and international awards for uniquely important contributions to the field. Her current book, Living on the Edge: When Hard Times Become A Way of Life is forthcoming from Polity Press in 2021.

Two years before the pandemic, polls reported that between 65% and 80% of the U.S. population was living paycheck to paycheck. For the majority of Americans, hard times long have long been a way of life. Some work multiple low-wage jobs, others face the squeeze of stagnant wages and rising costs of living.  What does daily life look in economically stressed communities? I talked with people across Appalachia, at Standing Rock and Wind River Reservations and in the bustling city of Oakland, California. Their voices offer a wide range of experiences that complicate dominant national narratives about economic struggles.

Yet Living on the Edge is about more than individual experiences. It’s about a nation in a deep economic and moral crisis. It’s about the long-standing collusion between government and corporations that prioritizes profits over people, over the environment, and over the nation’s well-being. It’s about how racism, sexism, violence and the pandemic shape daily experience in struggling communities. And ultimately, it is a book about hope that lays out a vision for the future as honest as it is ambitious. Most people in the book are not progressives; none are radicals. They’re hard-working people who know from experience that the current system is unsustainable. Across the country people described the need for a living wage, accessible health care, immigration reform, and free education. Their voices make a timely and important contribution to national conversations on inequality.

Professor Pascale’s first book, Making Sense of Race, Gender and Class: Commonsense, Power and Privilege in the United States (Routledge, 2007) received the Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award from the American Sociological Association Section on Race, Gender, and Class.


Dr. Pascale in Yokohama, Japan, to present her research on media coverage of the Fukushima Daichi nuclear disaster.

Her second book,  Cartographies of Knowledge: Exploring Qualitative Inquiry (Sage, 2011) received the Distinguished Book Award from the International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry.

Her most recent book Social Inequality & The Politics of Representation: A Global Landscape (Sage, 2013) features scholarship from five continents and has been acclaimed as a field-defining collection of international scholarship.

Pascale’s expertise and scholarship have been featured by media including national outlets such as the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), National Public Radio (NPR), Channel 7/ABC News, Channel 9 Local News, Associated Press, Sinclair Broadcast Group, Counterspin, Fairness and Accuracy in the Media (FAIR), and Metro Networks. Her research has also been featured international media including International Business Times of Australia, La Nación (Argentina), and France 2—France Televisions.

Professor Pascale has served as a consultant and educator for the National Children’s Defense Fund, City Policy Associates for the Conference of Mayors Hunger and Homelessness Report, and the Center for Social Media and the New Media Literary Project at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The International Sociology Association’s Flagship journal, Current Sociology, recognized Pascale’s scholarship with a feature on her scholarship in 2017.


Dr. Pascale in Gothenburg, Sweden, for the XVII ISA World Congress.

She was elected president of the International Sociology Association Research Committee 25, Language & Society (2010-2014), to the executive board of the American Sociology Association section on Race, Class & Gender (2005-2008) and serves as an invited editorial board member and reviewer for multiple academic presses and scholarly journals.

Celine-Marie Pascale earned her doctorate in Sociology with a certificate in Feminist Studies (then, Women’s Studies) in December 2001 from the University of California, Santa Cruz.  She served as a University of California Faculty Fellow until 2003, when she accepted a position on the faculty of American University.  At American University, Celine-Marie earned tenure in 2009 and early promotion to full professor in 2013. She served three years as Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies for the College of Arts & Sciences, 2014-2017. In 2017-2018 she was on sabbatical leave from the university while to conduct research on her forthcoming book on race and class.