You Read it Here First: Greatest Hits in Social Science

BooksBelow is a list of some of the most influential and prestigious books and journal articles publshed by UC Berkeley authors in various fields of the social sciences. These selections were offered by the chairs of their respective departments. 


Lists by Departments

  1. Anthropology
  2. Demography
  3. Geography
  4. Linguistics
  5. Gender and Women’s Studies


The following books are recepients of the J. I. Staley Prize, awarded to a living author for a book that exemplifies outstanding scholarship and writing in anthropology. No single department in the country has as many winners of this most prestigious prize than Berkeley.

William F. Hanks
Converting Words: Maya in the Age of the Cross
University of California Press, 2010

Patrick V. Kirch, with Marshall Sahlins 
Anahulu: The Anthropology of History in the Kingdom of Hawai’i
University of Chicago Press, 1992  

Nancy Scheper-Hughes
Death Without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil
University of California Press, 1992

Lawrence Cohen
No Aging in India: Alzheimer’s, the Bad Family and Other Modern Things
University of California Press, 1998

Terrence W. Deacon
The Symbolic Species: The CoEvolution of Language and the Brain
W. W. Norton & Company, 1998

Charles L. Briggs (with Clara Mantini Briggs) 
Stories in the Time of Cholera: Racial Profiling during a Medical Nightmare
University of California Press, 2003


Kenneth W. Wachter
Essential Demographic Methods
Harvard University Press, 2014

Jennifer Johnson Hanks, with Chris Bachrach, Phil Morgan, and Hans-Peter Kohler
Understanding Family Change and Variation: Toward a Theory of Conjunctural Action
Springer, 2011

Kingsley Davis, Judith Blake 
Social Structure and Fertility: An Analytic Framework
Economic Development and Cultural Change
Vol. 4, No. 3 (Apr 1956), pp. 211-235

Kingsley Davis
The Theory of Change and Response in Modern Demographic History
Population Index, Vol. 29, No. 4 (Oct 1963), pp. 345-366

Nathan Keyfitz
On the Momentum of Population Growth
Demography, Vol. 8, No. 1 (Feb 1971), pp. 71-80

Samuel H. Preston, Nathan Keyfitz, and Robert Schoen
Causes of Death: Life Tables for National Populations
New York: Seminar Press, 1972

E. A. Hammel, Peter Laslett
Comparing Household Structure over Time and between Cultures
Comparative Studies in Society and History, Vol. 16, No. 1 (Jan 1974), pp. 73-109

Samuel H. Preston, Verne E. Nelson
Structure and Change in Causes of Death: An International Summary
Population Studies, Vol. 28, No. 1 (March 1974), pp. 19-51

Claude S. Fischer
Toward a Subcultural Theory of Urbanism
The American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 80, No. 6 (May 1975), pp. 1319-1341

Claude S. Fischer
The Subcultural Theory of Urbanism: A Twentieth-Year Assessment
The American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 101, No. 3 (Nov 1995), pp. 543-577

Allan Sharlin
From the Study of Social Mobility to the Study of Society
The American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 85, No. 2 (Sept 1979), pp. 338-360

R. D. Lee
Aiming at a Moving Target: Period Fertility and Changing Reproductive Goals
Population Studies, Vol. 34, No. 2 (Juy 1980), pp. 205-226

Kenneth W. Wachter, James Trussell
Estimating Historical Heights
Journal of the American Statistical Association, Vol. 77, No. 378 (June 1982), pp. 279-293

Kristin Luker (1985)
Abortion and the Politics of Motherhood

Stanley Lieberson (1987)
Making It Count: The Improvement of Social Research and Theory

Patrick R. Galloway
Basic Patterns in Annual Variations in Fertility, Nuptiality, Mortality, and Prices in Pre-industrial Europe
Population Studies, Vol. 42, No. 2 (July 1988), pp. 275-302

Mary C. Waters
Ethnic Options: Choosing Identities in America
University of California Press, 1990

E. A. Hammel
A Theory of Culture for Demography
Population and Development Review, Vol. 16, No. 3 (Sept 1990), pp. 455-485

Kenneth W. Wachter
Elusive Cycles: Are There Dynamically Possible Lee-Easterlin Models for U.S Births?
Population Studies, Vol. 45, No. 1 (March 1991), pp. 109-135

Leo A. Goodman
Measures, Models, and Graphical Displays in the Analysis of Cross-Classified Data
Journal of the American Statistical Association, Vol. 86, No. 416 (Dec 1991), pp. 1085-1111

Ronald D. Lee, Lawrence R. Carter
Modeling and Forecasting U. S. Mortality
Journal of the American Statistical Association, Vol. 87, No. 419 (Sept 1992), pp. 659-671

Michael Hout, Joshua R. Goldstein
How 4.5 Million Irish Immigrants Became 40 Million Irish Americans: Demographic and Subjective Aspects of the Ethnic Composition of White Americans
American Sociological Review, Vol. 59, No. 1 (Feb 1994), pp. 64-82



I. Classic Works

Clarence Glacken
Traces on the Rhodian Shore: Nature and Culture in Western Thought from Ancient Times to the End of the Eighteenth Century
University of California Press, 1967
A magisterial and highly influential study of the long history of ideas about the relationship between man and nature.

William L. Thomas, Jr., with the collaboration of Carl O. Sauer, Marston Bates, and Lewis Mumford
Man's Role in Changing the Face of the Earth, 2 vols.
University of Chicago Press, 1956
A pioneering publication in environmental research, with essays by a few dozen authors. A call to arms for what became known as the environmental movement.

John Leighly, ed.
Land and Life: A Selection of the Writings of Carl Ortwin Sauer
University of California Press, 1963
A classic body of work about man's role in shaping the face of the Earth, especially concerning North America before European colonization.

Allan R. Pred
City Systems in Advanced Economies: Past Growth, Present Processes, and Future Development Options
Wiley, 1977
A seminal work on systems of cities

James E. Vance, Jr.
The Continuing City: Urban Morphology in Western Civilization
Johns Hopkins University Press 1990
Extensively rewritten from Vance's 1977 book "This Scene of Man: The Role and Structure of the City in the Geography of Western Civilization." A classic study of urban geography, concerning the physical form and structure of the city and its influence on culture, society and daily life.

Paul Groth
Living Downtown: The History of Residential Hotels in the United States
University of California Press, 1994
An insightful analysis of a key component of urban landscapes

Richard Walker and Michael Storper
The Capitalist Imperative: Territory, Technology and Industrial Growth
Wiley-Blackwell, 1991
An analysis of the territorial forms of industrialization and their relation to foundations in politics and technology

II. Recent Work of Exceptional Merit

Kurt M. Cuffey and W.S.B. Paterson
The Physics of Glaciers
Academic Press, Fourth Edition, 2010

Nathan F. Sayre
Working Wilderness: The Malpai Borderlands Group Story and the Future of the Western Range
Rio Nuevo Press, 2006
Chronicles and analyzes events in an iconic landscape of the American West and points the way forward for sustainable western landscapes and effective, cooperative political action.

Jake Kosek
Understories: The Political Life of Forests in Northern New Mexico
Duke University Press, 2006
Illuminates the seldom-appreciated complexities of environmental politics and their relation to race, class, and state, and how they take expression in forest landscapes of the American Southwest.  
Winner of the John Hope Franklin Book Award for the best book in American Studies (2006).

You-tien Hsing
The Great Urban Transformation: Politics and Property in China
Oxford University Press, 2010
An integrated analysis of the social, economic, and political dimensions of the explosive  recent growth of urban China.

Gillian Hart
Disabling Globalization: Places of Power in Post-Apartheid South Africa
University of California Press, 2003
A rich empirical and theoretical analysis of the variable impacts of globalization on South African communities and the political responses to the transformations

Rethinking the South African Crisis: Nationalism, Populism, Hegemony.
University of Georgia Press, 2014

Richard A. Walker
The Country in the City: The Greening of the San Francisco Bay Area
University of Washington Press, 2008
A masterful regional environmental history of environmental preservation and associated politics in the San Francisco region. Winner of the Western History Association's Hal K. Rothman Award (2009)


P. Ladefoged and Keith Johnson
A Course in Phonetics
Cengage Publishing, 7th edition, 2014

M. Harvey, Susan Lin, M. Turpin, B. Davies, and K. Demuth  
Contrastive and non-contrastive pre-stopping in Kaytetye. 
Australian Journal of Linguistics, 35(3):1-19, 2015

Murray Emeneau
India as a Linguistic Area
Language 32:3‑16, 1956

Brent Berlin and Paul Kay
Basic Color Terms: Their Universality and Evolution.
Berkeley: University of California Press, 1969 [link to World Color Survey]

Karl Zimmer 
Psychological Correlates of Some Turkish Morpheme Structure Conditions
Language 45:309‑321, 1969

James Matisoff 
The Grammar of Lahu
University of California Publications in Linguistics, No. 75, 1973 (reprinted 1982)
Includes map, photographs, 57 figures, indexes, bibliography.

Robin Lakoff 
Language and Woman’s Place
Harper & Row
Revised and expanded edition
, edited by Mary Bucholtz, published in 2004 by Oxford University Press. 1975

J.J. Ohala 
The Listener as a Source of Sound Change
Papers from the Parasession on Language and Behavior. Chicago: Chicago Ling. Soc. 178 - 203, 1981

 Larry M. Hyman 
A Theory of Phonological Weight
1985, Reissued in 2003 by the University of Chicago Press

George Lakoff 
Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things
University of Chicago Press, 1987

Charles. J. Fillmore, Paul Kay and Mary C. O’Connor
Regularity and Idiomaticity in Grammatical Constructions: The Case of Let Alone
Language 64: 501-38, 1988

Johanna Nichols 
Linguistic Diversity in Space and Time
University of Chicago Press, 1992

Leanne Hinton with Matt Vera and Nancy Steele
Keeping Your Language Alive: A Common-Sense Approach to Language Learning and Teaching
Berkeley: Heyday Books, 2002

Sharon Inkelas and Cheryl Zoll
Reduplication: Doubling in Morphology
Cambridge University Press, 2005

Keith Johnson 
Resonance in an Exemplar‑Based Lexicon: The Emergence of Social Identity and Phonology
Journal of Phonetics 34, 485-499, 2006

Rafael Núñez and Eve Sweetser
With the Future Behind Them: Convergent Evidence from Language and Gesture in the Crosslinguistic Comparison of Spatial Construals of Time
Cognitive Science 30:410-450, 2006

Terry Regier, Paul Kay, and Naveen Khetarpal
Color Naming Reflects Optimal Partitions of Color Space
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 104:1436-1441, 2007

Susanne Gahl 
'Thyme’ and ‘Time’ Are Not Homophones: Word Durations in Spontaneous Speech
Language 84(3), 474-496, 2008


Gender and Women's Studies


Paola Bacchetta, contributing co-editor with Margaret Power
Right-Wing Women: From Conservatives to Extremists Around the World
New York: Routledge, 2002

Evelyn Nakano Glenn
Forced to Care:  Coercion and Caregiving in America
Harvard University Press, 2010.

Unequal Freedom:  How Race and Gender Shaped American Citizenship and Labor
Harvard University Press, 2002

Minoo Moallem
Between Warrior Brother and Veiled Sister: Islamic Fundamentalism and the Politics of Patriarchy In Iran
University of California Press, 2005.

Leslie Salzinger
Making Workers in Mexico's Global Factories
University of California Press, 2003

Juana Maria Rodriguez
Queer Latinidad: Identity Practices, Discursive Spaces
NY: New York UP, 2003

Charis Thompson
Making Parents: The Ontological Choreography of Reproductive Technologies
MIT Press, 2007

Good Science: The Ethical Choreography of Stem Cell Research
MIT Press, 2013

Barrie Thorne
Rethinking the Family: Some Feminist Questions
Northeastern Univ. Press, 1992

"The Missing Feminist Revolution in Sociology" (with Judith Stacey)
Social Problems 32 (1985), 301-316.

Mel Y. Chen
Animacies: Biopolitics, Racial Mattering, and Queer Affect
Duke University Press, Perverse Modernities series, 2012.

Minh-ha Trinh
When the Moon Waxes Red: Representation, Gender & Cultural Politics
New York: Routledge,1991
Japanese version, translated by F Kobayashi, Misuzu Shobo, 1995

Woman, Native, Other: Writing Postcoloniality and Feminism
Indiana University Press, 1989
Japanese version, translated by K. Takemura, Iwanami, 1994.