I am a sociologist and an associate professor at the Institut des Sciences Sociales (ISS) of the University of Lausanne in Switzerland, where I am co-director of the Centre en études genre (CEG). I previously taught at the University of Amsterdam, the Université Paris 1-Panthéon Sorbonne and the University of Chicago. I’m interested in inequality, power and difference with a wide array of foci including international migration, citizenship and illegality, labor and employment, race and racism, gender and sexuality, class structure and social theory.
After an ethnography of temporary agency work and labor organizing in the Chicago region, I completed a collective study exploring the labor-market experience and following the union-supported mobilization of undocumented immigrant workers in France, together with Pierre Barron, Anne Bory, Nicolas Jounin and Lucie Tourette. With Nicolas Jounin, I conducted comparative analysis on the implications of ‘temporary’ staffing for migrant employment precarity in Paris and Chicago. Blanca Garcés-Mascareñas and I have also been developing a theoretical framework for the moral economy of migrant illegality, undocumented migrant incorporation and frames of legal deservingness across key countries, focusing on employment in particular (with Albert Kraler). I continue to explore the relationship between precarious work, social rights and civic inequality in Europe and the United States (through ongoing writing from studies with Fiona Naismith on the UK and Henry Chow on the Netherlands) as well as deservingness at the border (with Laura Cleton).
My work on gender, sexuality and intersectionality includes broad syntheses with Laure Bereni, Alex Jaunait, Anne Revillard, and Arnaud Lerch as well as a series of pieces in lesbian and gay studies, particularly on homophobia. I have been thinking and writing together with Alex Jaunait on intersectionality and the historical epistemology of sex and gender, as part of a broader interest in the evolving ontologies of race, gender, sexuality and kinship in the 21st century. With Saskia Bonjour, I organized a symposium on “Class, Gender and Migration”, which has become a large special issue just out in International Migration.
Since the late 2000s, Bruno Cousin and I have been expanding a multi-sited research program on social and symbolic capital and the cultural sociology of economic elites, with a focus on Western Europe (elite white male social club sociability), the Caribbean region (St. Barthélemy, “Offshore Europe” with Peter Clegg), and new forms of conspicuous consumption (with Ashley Mears). With Olga Sezneva, I began to work on a new reading of the role of materiality in the history of the commodity form, focusing on the economics of cultural, virtual and agricultural products under globalized capitalism. This line of reflection on the politics of economic value is being further developed through a new multi-center seminar on “value, valuation, valorization” at the University of Lausanne since 2017.
Other ongoing writings (with Yannick Coenders, Timo Koren, Manuela Salcedo, Fatiha El-Hajjari and Apostolos Andrikopoulos) explore the dynamics of race, nationalism, sexuality and citizenship in the Netherlands, France and the U.S. Our most recent stream of published work focuses on the structuration of whiteness in the NL through new analysis of the Zwarte Piet controversies, in Dutch primary schools (Antipode piece, with Yannick), and in a famous children’s TV program (Public Culture piece, with Yannick and Timo).