Pitzer Professor to Speak on New Approach to Understanding Public Opinion

Claremont, Calif. (October 7, 2013) — Pitzer College Professor of Anthropology Claudia Strauss will discuss an anthropological approach to parsing public opinion in her talk, Making Sense of Public Opinion about Immigration Reform and Obamacare, at the Honnold/Mudd Library Founders Room on Wednesday, October 9, 2013 at 4:15 p.m. This address is part of the Claremont Colleges Library’s Claremont Discourse lecture series.

Claudia Strauss
Claudia Strauss

Strauss contends that it is impossible to make sense of the way the American public thinks about issues like immigration reform or the government’s role in health care by analyzing opinions in terms of standard liberal/conservative ideologies. Her talk draws on anthropological interviews to show that people form opinions from a patchwork of conventional discourses that cross ideological lines.

This lecture expands on the ideas Strauss explored in her book, Making Sense of Public Opinion: American Discourses about Immigration and Social Programs, published by Cambridge University Press in 2012. Strauss received her PhD from Harvard University and has taught at Pitzer since 2000.

Now in its 15th year, Claremont Discourse is a faculty lecture series that features professors from The Claremont Colleges discussing their recent publications, research or artistic creations. This lecture is free and open to the public.

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