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Boocock, Sarane Spence 1935-

Boocock, Sarane Spence 1935-


Born May 7, 1935, in Evanston, IL; daughter of William Kenneth and Barbara Spence; children: Paul Morris. Education: Vassar College, B.A., 1957; Rutgers University, M.A., 1961; Johns Hopkins University, Ph.D., 1966.


Office—Graduate School of Education, Department of Sociology, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08903.


Sociologist, educator, writer, and editor. Prudential Life Insurance Co., Newark, NJ, cost analyst, 1957-58; New Jersey Board of Child Welfare, New Brunswick, NJ, social caseworker and child welfare analyst, 1958-59; Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, research assistant, 1959-62, professor of sociology and department chairman, 1976-88, fellow at the Center for Critical Analysis Contemporary Culture, 1988-89, professor, then emeritus professor, in the Graduate School of Education, 1991—; Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, research associate in the department of social relations, 1962-68; Academic Games Associates, Baltimore, MD, founder and director, 1968; University of Southern California, Los Angeles, assistant professor of sociology, 1968-70, associate professor, 1970-73; Russell Sage Foundation, New York, NY, sociologist, 1973-76; Yale University, New Haven, CT, visiting professor of sociology, 1974-76. Also visiting professor at Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel, 1973, and Fromer lecturer, 1987; visiting professor at Yale University, University of Stockholm, and the University of Goteborg, Sweden; fellow at the Center for Critical Analysis Contemporary Culture, Rutgers University, 1988-89.


American Sociological Association, Sociological Research Association.


Dart Award, 1970; Fulbright research scholar, 1985; recipient of grants, including grants from the Grantee Carnegie Corp., 1965, NASA, 1969, ESSO Educational Foundation, 1972-73, Russell Sage Foundation, 1974-75, 75-77, National Institute of Education, 1978-79, Social Sciences Research Council, 1985-86, Spencer Foundation, 1986-88, Japan Public Broadcasting Corp. (NHK), 1989-90, Uehiro Foundation, Japan, 1991-93, David and Lucile Packard Foundation, 1994-95.


(Editor and contributor, with E.O. Schild) Simulation Games in Learning, preface by James S. Coleman, Sage (Beverly Hills, CA), 1968.

An Introduction to the Sociology of Learning, Houghton Mifflin (New York, NY), 1971, 2nd edition published as Sociology of Education: An Introduction, 1980.

Students, Schools, and Educational Policy: A Sociological View, Aspen Institute for Humanistic Studies, Program on Education for a Changing Society (New York, NY), 1976.

(Editor and contributor, with John Demos) Turning Points, Historical and Sociological Essays on the Family, University of Chicago Press (Chicago, IL), 1978.

Changing Definitions of Childhood Crosscultural Comparisons, National Council of Jewish Women, Research Institute for Innovation in Education, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, School of Education (Jerusalem, Israel), 1987.

(Editor, with W. Steven Barnett) Early Care and Education for Children in Poverty: Promises, Programs, and Long-Term Results, State University of New York Press (Albany, NY), 1998.

(With Kimberly Ann Scott) Kids in Context: The Sociological Study of Children and Childhoods, Rowman & Littlefield (Lanham, MD), 2005.

Also author, with Matilda W. Riley, of Sociological Research Methods, two volumes, 1963; served as editor for scholarly publications, including Sociology of Education and Simulation and Games.


Sarane Spence Boocock is a sociologist who has written, edited, and contributed to a number of books on sociology, primarily in the realms of education, children, and the family. She is the author, with Kimberly Ann Scott, of Kids in Context: The Sociological Study of Children and Childhoods. The book focuses on children and childhoods both within the home and within other social groups. The authors discuss topics such as how the relationship between children and adults is affected by the mass media and how "childhoods" have changed over historical time. "The discussion in Kids in Context builds cumulatively through the chapters, and the reader is carefully guided through the inevitable overlapping of relevant research between chapters," wrote Rhonda S. Ovist for Humanities and Social Sciences Online. Ovist also commented that the book "is exactly what the sociology of children and childhood in the United States needs: a well-organized, readable, relatively comprehensive introduction to the literature that is accessible to researchers, students and nonacademics alike." Ovist added that the authors "have written a text that is a pleasure to read, engaging the reader with well chosen and nicely contrasted studies." A Reference & Research Book News contributor noted that the authors highlight "research designs that enable kids to speak for themselves."



Reference & Research Book News, February, 2006, review of Kids in Context: The Sociological Study of Children and Childhoods.


Humanities and Social Sciences Online, (September 24, 2006), Rhonda S. Ovist, review of Kids in Context.

Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Web site, (September 24, 2006), brief profile of author.

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