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Photo by Douglas Levere


Department of Sociology

University at Buffalo

404 Park Hall

Buffalo, NY  14260

(716) 645-8476 

Erin Hatton, Ph.D.

I am professor of sociology at the State University of New York at Buffalo. My research is centered in the sociology of work, while also extending into the fields of race and gender, culture, labor, law, and social policy.

My recent book, Coerced: Work Under Threat of Punishment (University of California Press, 2020), analyzes four very different groups of workers:  incarcerated, workfare, college athlete, and graduate student workers. Drawing on more than 120 in-depth interviews across these four groups, in this book I uncover a new form of labor coercion--"status coercion"--and analyze its consequences for workers in America. Coerced was awarded the Max Weber Award for Distinguished Scholarship from the  American Sociological Association's section on Organizations, Occupations, and Work. 

I am also editor of the recent book Labor and Punishment: Work In and Out of Prison (UC Press, 2021). This interdisciplinary volume examines the multiple and multi-directional intersections between the carceral state and labor and employment in the U.S. today. 


My first book, The Temp Economy: From Kelly Girls to Permatemps in Postwar America (Temple University Press, 2011), weaves together gender, race, class, and work in a cultural analysis of the temporary help industry and the rise of the new economy. The Temp Economy won an Honorable Mention for the Distinguished Scholarly Monograph Award from the American Sociological Association's Labor & Labor Movements Section.


  • I was awarded the 2023 SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities
  • Coerced was awarded the 2022 Max Weber Award for Distinguished Scholarship 
  • Coerced was shortlisted for the 2022 Alice Amsden Book Award by the Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics
  • Labor and Punishment is out! Get 30% off with code 17M6662 at UC Press
  • Choice named Coerced as one of 2020's Outstanding Academic Titles
  • Check out Stacey Robinson's *amazing* artwork inspired by Coerced
Labor and Punishment--cover.jpg


"This landmark study is essential for experts and laypersons seeking to understand the twentieth century's wide-scale transformation of work."

 -Irene Padavic, author of Women and Men at Work



"This book is a must-read for students of organizations, occupations, and work; labor markets and unions; sex and gender; and economic sociology." 

-Contemporary Sociology



"A detailed, lively, and convincing account. I appreciate this book not only for the content but also for the fine example of how to write qualitative analysis."

-Work and Occupations




"This interesting book is useful for scholars interested in gender, work and occupations, labor organizing, the economy, and research methods... The book is ideal for showing the explanatory power of content analyses."

-Gender & Society



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