Jenna Mahay, PhD

Professor of Sociology

Department Chair, Sociology

College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Mahay teaches Globalization & Human Rights; Social Inequality: Class, Status, and Power; Contemporary Sociological Theory; Marriage and Family; and Introduction to Cultural Anthropology courses at Concordia University Chicago. Among her areas of research interest are Social inequality, human rights, sociology of culture, sociology of marriage and family, and sociological theory.

Dr. Mahay’s current interdisciplinary research projects include examining the relationship between social class, education and cultural capital. She serves as the faculty advisor for the CUC Human Rights Club, and started the Global Justice Series, a series of events focused on issues of social justice around the world. She has been a member of Concordia’s faculty since 2006.


  • PhD, University of Chicago; Chicago
  • MA, University of Chicago; Chicago
  • BA, Wellesley College; Wellesley, Mass.


  • “Their Lives Are So Much Better Than Ours! The Ritual (Re)construction of Social Identity in Holiday Cards.” Discourse 2.0: Language and New Media. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press, forthcoming.
  • “Age and the Desire to Marry” (with Lewin, A.), Journal of Family Issues, 2007.
  • “Sex, Intimacy, and Family Life in the United States” (with Laumann, E., Youm, Y.), In the Sexual Self: The Construction of Sexual Scripts, 2007.•   
  • “Network Data Collection and Its Relevance for the Analysis of STDs: The NHSLS and CHSLS” (with Laumann, E., Paik, A., Youm, Y.), Network Epidemiology: A Handbook for Survey Design and Data Collection, 2004.
  • "Meeting and Mating over the Life Course” (with Laumann, E.) The Sexual Organization of the City, 2004.


  • “Making the Connection: Engaging Students in Social Justice Issues through a Multifaceted Approach,” Associated Colleges of the Chicago Area Conference, Dominican University, October 2011.
  • “Ritual, Representation, and Power: The Role of New Technologies in Identity Construction and Social Reproduction,” Discourse 2.0: Language and New Media, Georgetown University Round Table on Languages and Linguistics, Georgetown University, March 2011.
  • “Creating a Collaborative Class Website: Techniques for Empowering Students and Sharing Their Insights,” Associated Colleges of the Chicago Area Conference, Dominican University, October 2010
  • “Transforming Pedagogy: Using a Teach-In to Ignite Student Social Action,” Associated Colleges of the Chicago Area Scholarship of Pedagogy Symposium; Chicago, October 2007.
  • “Integrating Biological and Social Data in the Study of Health: Benefits and Challenges,” American Sociological Association Annual Meeting; Philadelphia, Penn., August 2005.
  •  “Interdisciplinary Methods for the Study of Health and Aging: The National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project,” Gerontological Society of America Annual Meeting; Washington, D.C., November 2004.
  • “Criteria for the Advancement of Biomarker Collection in Population-Based Research,” 2004 Chicago Workshop on Biomarker Collection in Population-Based Health Research; Chicago, June 2004.
  • “Age and the Desire to Marry: Changing Competitive and Cultural Pressures,” American Sociological Association Annual Meeting; Atlanta, Ga., August 2003.