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Kjerstin Gruys
Postdoctoral Scholar 2015-16

Kjerstin Gruys is a Thinking Matters Fellow at Stanford University and a Postdoctoral  Scholar (by courtesy) at the Clayman Institute for Gender Research, also at Stanford. She completed her Ph.D. in Sociology at UCLA in 2014.  

Kjerstin's research broadly explores the relationship between physical appearance and social inequality, often examining how body size, in particular, intersects with other markers of difference, such as gender, race/ethnicity, class, sexuality and age. For example, her dissertation examined how workplace expectations for workers' appearance, mannerisms, and style - their "aesthetic labor" - reinforced while obscuring gender inequality in the workplace. She uses multiple methods in her research, including ethnography, in-depth interviews, content analysis, and experiments.

Prior to earning her PhD from UCLA, Kjerstin worked as a merchandiser in the corporate offices of two multi-national fashion firms. Her research has been published in peer reviewed journals, including Social Problems and Social Science & Medicine and she is currently developing a book manuscript, tentatively titled: True to Size?: A Social History of Clothing Size Standards in the U.S. Fashion Industry.