• Professor Sharon Preves

    Sharon Preves

    Professor, Sociology


    Sharon Preves is a professor in the Sociology Department and was one of the founding directors of the Public Health Sciences Program at Hamline University. Professor Preves is also a faculty research collaborator at the Mayo Clinic, the faculty advisor to Hamline University's Sociology Club and, the immediate past chair of the American Sociological Association's Section on Sociology of the Body and Embodiment. She teaches and conducts research on gender, medicine, sexuality, ethics, tourism, and identity. Preves' research on intersex has been published widely, including in her book Intersex and Identity: the Contested Self (Rutgers University Press, 2003). She has also coauthored publications on collaborative teaching and female genital cutting. She and co-editor Jeylan Mortimer published a social psychology anthology with Oxford University Press (2011). Preves’ current research studies the socialization of medical students with respect to providing care for intersex and transgender patients and families.

    Professor Preves was first introduced to sociology as an eighteen-year-old Hamline undergraduate student. Her plan at that time was to study psychology, become a therapist, and do a little singing on the side. Instead, she took an Introduction to Sociological Thinking course – a course she has since taught many times. This sociology course, and many others, challenged her to think in new and exciting ways. She was drawn to the concept of studying not only individuals, but to pay attention to larger social structures and social contexts in her desire to understand and act against social inequality. In addition to her academic pursuits, she continues to sing, take long walks, and travel to Minnesota's North Shore whenever she gets the chance.


    Students taking a class with Professor Preves will learn how to actively critique and analyze the social world by engaging in the sociological exploration of everyday life. Her students will develop the ability to analyze popular culture, human interaction, identity negotiation, and the structure and impact of social inequality through reflective writing, research, and in class presentations.

    "I love Sociology, I love teaching, and I love my job. I am dedicated to helping students explore and understand the structure of social privilege based on gender, power, and normative position. I have opportunity to engage students in these topics by teaching courses on medical ethics, gender, sexuality, and social psychology."

    - Sharon Preves