Jennifer Utrata

Jennifer Utrata

Professor, Sociology and Anthropology

I am a sociologist interested in how economic and cultural transformations shape gender and intimate relationships in families. My award-winning book, Women without Men: Single Mothers and Family Change in the New Russia (Cornell, 2015), analyzes how ordinary people, especially single mothers, navigate the transition from state socialism to market capitalism during Russia’s “quiet revolution” in family life. Through in-depth analysis of Russia’s matrifocal families, I challenge several assumptions underlying theories of family life, poverty, and gender. Related to my interest in single-mother families, I have written about nonresident fathers and divorce, the effects of work insecurities and neoliberal capitalism on the self, intergenerational relations between grandmothers and adult children, the intersectionality of gender and age, and the ways in which unpaid care work shapes gender inequality.

My current research examines how “intensive grandmothering” in the United States affects the transition to parenthood, parents’ responses to the child care crisis, and broader inequalities among families. 

Selected Publications

  • “Masculinity Restored? Putin’s Russia and Trump’s America,” Contexts (2020)
  • “Invisible Labor and Women’s Double Binds: Collusive Femininity and Masculine Drinking,” Gender & Society (2019)
  • Women without Men: Single Mothers and Family Change in the New Russia (Cornell, 2015)
    *Distinguished Scholarship Award, 2017, Pacific Sociological Association
    *Mirra Komarovsky Distinguished Book Award, 2016, Eastern Sociological Society
  • "Youth Privilege: Doing Age and Gender in Russia’s Single-Mother Families,” Gender & Society (2011)
    *Distinguished Article Award, 2012, American Sociological Association’s Sex and Gender Section
BA University of Chicago 1992
MA University of California, Berkeley 2001
PhD University of California, Berkeley 2008
Hacking Happiness CONN 128-A Fall 2024
Senior Thesis SOAN 490-A Fall 2024

Contact Information

Mcintyre 213M