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Nora Taplin-Kaguru
Assistant Professor of Sociology/Anthropology

Nora Taplin-Kaguru is a sociologist with research interests in urban sociology, race, housing and social media. She earned her B.A. from Swarthmore College where she majored in Sociology and Anthropology. Her B.A. thesis was on mobilities and the politics of automobiles. From there, she decided to continue her studies in Sociology at the University of Chicago where she earned her Ph.D. In Chicago, her interest in urban issues deepened. In one project, she looked at the relationship between urban space and social media. Ultimately, she developed a focus on the persistent problem of race segregation. She is currently completing a book based on her dissertation research about how working-class African Americans navigate the homebuying process in a racially segregated metropolitan area.

Contact Info

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Drawer 25



331 Landrum Bolling Center

Office Hours
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  • Sociology/Anthropology
  • Human Development and Social Relations
  • Social Services


  • Ph.D., University of Chicago
  • M.A., University of Chicago
  • B.A., Swarthmore College

Selected Courses:

SOAN/AAAS 118 Inequality, Power and Society

SOAN 309 Sociology of Social Media

Race, Urban Sociology, Housing, Sociology of Technology, Qualitative Methods

Grasping for the American Dream: Racial Segregation, Social Mobility, and Homeownership

This project examines how lower middle class African American homebuyers understand their own agency in pursuing homeownership within the structure of racial segregation. It is based on in-depth interviews with sixty-eight African American aspiring homebuyers in the Chicago metropolitan area and follow up data collected over the course of a year and a half. Ultimately, homeownership continues to be pursued by African Americans despite higher risks and lower returns than other Americans because it represents the attainment of the American dream of freedom and equality.

Taplin-Kaguru, Nora. “Mobile but Stuck: Multigenerational Neighborhood Decline and Housing Search Strategies.” City and Community. (forthcoming).

Taplin-Kaguru, Nora. 2016. “The Flaneurs and the Regulars of Foursquare: Negotiating New Social Norms on Location-Based Online Social Networks.” Sociological Imagination 52:1.

American Sociological Association

I love working at a place where I can focus on teaching engaging classes that push students to think critically about the social world. Earlham gives you the resources and time to be creative about pedagogy and constantly improve as a teacher.

Earlham students are passionate not just about their studies but also about applying their learning to real life problems. As a sociologist, it’s invigorating to engage with students who are eager to understand social problems so that they can make positive change in the world.

I love to travel.

I enjoy dancing and cooking.

Earlham College, an independent, residential college, aspires to provide the highest-quality undergraduate education in the liberal arts and sciences, shaped by the distinctive perspectives of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

Earlham College
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Richmond, Indiana
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Earlham admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.