Daniel B. Cornfield
Professor of Sociology
Editor, Work and Occupations
Affiliated Faculty, American Studies and Political Science
Harvie Branscomb Distinguished Professor Award
Elected Member, Sociological Research Association
Fellow, Labor and Employment Relations Association
What factors—social, political, economic, and cultural–influence and shape the formation of inclusive, diverse, democratic communities?
Over the last half-century, the transition from manufacturing toward a two-tier service economy has been accompanied by the individualization of risk and sharpening income inequality. These trends have diminished societal capacity for addressing the marginalization of social and cultural minorities, and for realizing inclusive, diverse, democratic communities.
I am presently engaged in two research projects. The first is a book project on how pre- and post-movement biographical and occupational trajectories of 1960-era Nashville civil rights activists, trained in non-violence in movement workshops, contributed to the continued mobilization of the civil rights movement and the diffusion of movement messages of non-violence and social integration. This is a collaborative project with Professors Larry Isaac and Dennis Dickerson and the Reverend James M. Lawson, Jr.
The second project—“Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Policies and Practices in Local Arts Agencies in the United States”—addresses organizational and contextual determinants of variations in DEI grantmaking policies and practices across more than 500 U.S. local arts agencies. The project is conducted in collaboration with Americans for the Arts and the Vanderbilt University Curb Center for Art, Enterprise and Public Policy, with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Cornfield, D., Coley, J., Isaac, L., & Dickerson, D. (2021). The Making of a Movement: An Intergenerational Mobilization Model of the Nonviolent Nashville Civil Rights Movement. Social Science History, 1-26. doi:10.1017/ssh.2021.18
Daniel Cornfield, Dennis Dickerson, Larry Isaac, and Reverend James M. Lawson, Jr. 2021. “Learning from the Nashville model of social change,” Op-ed, Los Angeles Times, March 28, 2021.
Daniel B. Cornfield, Jonathan S. Coley, Larry W. Isaac, and Dennis C. Dickerson. 2019. “Occupational Activism and Race Desegregation at Work: Activist Careers after the Nonviolent Nashville Civil Rights Movement.” Pp. 217-248 in Research in the Sociology of Work, vol. 32, special issue on “Race, Identity, and Work.”
Daniel B. Cornfield, Rachel E. Skaggs, Elizabeth K. Barna, Megan L. Jordan, and Megan E. Robinson. “Equity and Engagement in the Arts: Regional Differences in the Missions of Local Arts Agencies in the United States.” Policy Paper, Curb Center for Art, Enterprise and Public Policy, Vanderbilt University, June 6, 2018.
Cornfield, Daniel. 2016. "Randy Hodson, Agent of a New Sociology of Work: Remembrance, Reflection, and Celebration." Pp. xvii - xxv in Lisa A. Keister and Vincent J. Roscigno (eds.), A Gedenkschrift to Randy Hodson: Working with Dignity, Research in the Sociology of Work, vol. 28. Emerald Publishing.
Cornfield, Daniel. 2015. Beyond the Beat: Musicians Building Community in Nashville. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Cornfield, Daniel. 2014. “Integrative Organizing in Polarized Times: Toward Dynamic Trade Unionism in the Global North.” pp. 151-168 in Lee Adler, Maite Tapia, and Lowell Turner (eds.), Mobilizing against Inequality: Unions, Immigrant Workers, and the Crisis of Capitalism. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2014.
Cornfield, Daniel. 2006. “Immigration, Economic Restructuring, and Labor Ruptures: From the Amalgamated to Change to Win.” WorkingUSA: The Journal of Labor and Society 9: 215-23.
Cornfield, Daniel, Angela Arzubiaga, Rhonda BeLue, Susan L. Brooks, Tony N. Brown, Oscar Miller, Douglas D. Perkins, Peggy A. Thoits, and Lynn S. Walker. 2003. Final Report of the Immigrant Community Assessment, commissioned by Mayor Bill Purcell, Nashville, Tennessee.
Cornfield, Daniel B. and Bill Fletcher. 1998. “Institutional Constraints on Social Movement 'Frame Extension': Shifts in the Legislative Agenda of the American Federation of Labor, 1881-1955.” Social Forces 76(4): 1305-1321.
Cornfield, Daniel. 1989. Becoming a Mighty Voice: Conflict and Change in the United Furniture Workers of America. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.
Cornfield, Daniel. 1986. "Declining Union Membership in the Postâ€‘World War II Era: The United Furniture Workers of America, 1939â€‘1982." American Journal of Sociology 91(5): 1112â€‘53.