Professor and Chair, Department of Sociology
Professor, Public Policy Doctoral Program
Research Interests: Economic Inequality; the American Middle Class; Social Movements; Religion
Dr. Fitzgerald earned his PhD (2003) in Sociology from the University of Iowa, an M.A. (1997) in Political Science from Iowa State University where he studied homelessness and public policy, and a B.A. (1994) from Luther College where he majored in philosophy, political science and sociology. His research and teaching interests include: social inequality/stratification, social movements, religion, political sociology and ethics. His research examines social and economic inequality, religion, and social movements and has appeared in Social Forces, Mobilization, Sociological Spectrum, The Sociological Quarterly, American Behavioral Scientist, and Policy Studies Journal. He routinely teaches study abroad courses in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and El Salvador. He is the author (with Kevin Leicht) of Middle Class Meltdown in America: Causes, Consequences, and Remedies.
Book: Leicht, Kevin T. and Scott T. Fitzgerald. (2014). Middle Class Meltdown in America: Causes, Consequences, and Remedies. Routledge Press.
In accessible prose for North American undergraduate students, this short text provides a sociological understanding of the causes and consequences of growing middle class inequality, with an abundance of supporting, empirical data. The book also addresses what we, as individuals and as a society, can do to put middle class Americans on a sounder footing.
Podcast of interview on Charlotte Talks with Mike Collins (WFAE 90.7) discussing Middle Class Meltdown, original air date September 16, 2014.
- Austin, Rachel and Scott T. Fitzgerald. 2018. “’I Come Back a Better Person’: Identity Construction and Maintenance at a Regional Burn Festival.'” Sociological Inquiry.
- Walker, Lisa Slattery and Scott T. Fitzgerald. 2018. “A Case Study on Community and Identity in a Study Abroad Program” in Joseph Allen and Roni Reiter-Palmon, eds., The Cambridge Handbook of Organizational Community Engagement and Outreach. Cambridge University Press.
- Fitzgerald, Scott T. 2017. “Conceptualizing and Understanding the Gülen Movement ” Sociology Compass, 11:e12461.
- Fitzgerald, Scott T. and Kevin T. Leicht. 2017. “The Future of the American Middle Class” in Robert Rycroft, ed., The American Middle Class: An Economic Encyclopedia of Progress and Poverty. Greenwood.
- Glass, Jennifer L., Sutton, April and Scott T. Fitzgerald. 2015. “Leaving the Faith: How Religious Switching Changes Pathways to Adulthood among Conservative Protestant Youth” Social Currents. 2(2):126-143.
- Fitzgerald, Scott T. (2014). “Is Equality the Goal? Challenging Economic Inequality in the U.S. and U.K " Pp, 51-62 in Emmanuelle Avril and Johann Neem, eds., Democracy, Participation and Contestation: Civil Society, Governance and the Future of Liberal Democracy. Taylor and Francis Press.
- Fitzgerald, Scott T. and Jennifer L. Glass. (2014). “Conservative Protestants, Normative Pathways, and Adult Attainment” Pp. 97-118 in Lisa A. Keister and Darren E. Sherkat, Eds. Religion and Inequality. Cambridge University Press.
- Leicht, Kevin T. and Scott T. Fitzgerald. (2014). “The Real Reason 60 is the new 30: Consumer Debt and Income Insecurity in the Late Middle Age” The Sociological Quarterly 55(2):236-260.
- Fitzgerald, Scott T. (2009). “Cooperative Collective Action: Faith-Based Community Development and the State.” Mobilization: The International Quarterly Review of Social Movement Research14(2):405-422.