Dr. Gerald Turkel



University of Delaware
Newark, DE 19716
Phone: 302-831-1567
FAX: 302-831-2607

Email Dr. Turkel


Educational Background:

(Ph.D. California, Santa Barbara)

Dr. Gerald Turkel is Professor of Sociology. He teaches courses in social theory, sociology of law, law and society, and gender. Dr. Turkel directs the Law and Society Concentration in the Sociology major. He teaches Sociology of Law and the Law and Society Practicum which are required for the Law and Society Concentration. He serves on the Executive Committee of the Legal Studies Program and teaches the required Senior Seminar for Legal Studies minors. Dr. Turkel has a joint appointment in the Women's Studies Program.

Research Interests:

Dr. Turkel's research focuses on issues of concern to social theory, political theory, and the sociology of law. His work focuses on developing theoretical approaches to the public/private division and its significance for analyzing legal development, personal identities, and social action. His research on such legislation as federal loan guarantees to private corporations and federal liability insurance for the nuclear power industry aims at demonstrating how public and private elements interact in economic lawmaking. He writes on a variety of theories that contribute to analyzing the public/private division.

Representative Publications

Theories of Society: Visions and Realities. Boston: Allyn and Bacon. (In progress)

Law and Society: Critical Approaches. Boston: Allyn and Bacon, 1996.

Dividing Public and Private: Law, Politics and Social Theory. New York: Praeger, 1992.

"Law, Politics and the Social Relations of Production," in Socialism: Crisis and Renewal. 1993. Edited by Chronis Polychronius. New York: Praeger. Pp. 193-209. With Hao Pan.

"Privatizing Nuclear Power and Limiting Liability: The Price-Anderson Act," Studies in Law, Politics and Society 11 (1991), pp. 137-163. With William J. Lofquist.

"The Weakening of Tensions: Talcott Parsons on the Individual and Society," Current Perspectives in Social Theory 10 (1990), pp.253-270.

"Michel Foucault: Law, Knowledge and Power," Journal of Law and Society 17 (1990), pp.170-194.

"The Public/Private Distinction: Approaches to the Critique of Ideology," Law and Society Review 22 (1988), pp. 801-823.

"Laid-Off Workers, the Chrysler Loan Guarantee and Corporatist Legitimacy: A Thematic Analysis," Contemporary Crises 9 (1985), pp. 229-54. With David Costello.

"Situated Corporatist Legitimacy: The 1980 Chrysler Loan Guarantee," Research in Law, Deviance and Social Control 4 (1982), pp.165-190.

"Privatism and Orientations Toward Political Action," Urban Life 9 (1980), 217- 235.

"Legitimation, Authority and Consensus Formation," International Journal for the Sociology of Law 8 (1980), pp. 19-32.

"Testing Durkheim: Some Theoretical Considerations," Law and Society Review 13 (1979), pp. 721-738.

"Radical Sociology: The Emergence of Neo-Marxian Perspectives in U.S. Sociology," Annual Review of Sociology 4 (1978), pp. 193-238. With Richard Flacks.

"The Military in American Society." in Sociology: The Discipline and Its Direction. William J. Chambliss and T.E. Ryther. 1975. New York: McGraw- Hill, pp. 281-296.

Courses Regularly Offered

SOCI 312: Theories Of Society. Covers writings of Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim, Max Weber and related current approaches. Focuses on theoretical perspectives concerned with social development, social conflict, solidarity, social class and gender.

SOCI 345/CRJU 345: Sociology Of Law. Analysis of law as a social process in both historical and comparative perspective. Focuses on various theories of law and society and relevant empirical research.

SOCI 416: Social Thought And Contemporary Society. Seminar focuses on ways in which social thought defines and analyzes contemporary society. Explores how alternative theories and methods serve to create knowledge about contemporary concerns with everyday life, democracy, equality, social structure and power.

SOCI 442: Law And Society Practicum And Seminar. Field experience and related seminar. Placement in court, law firm or other law-related institution where students work for approximately 160 hours under professionally trained supervisors; weekly seminar with program coordinator.

LEST 401: Senior Seminar. Culminates the legal studies minor by requiring an independent research project resulting in a term paper. Seminar provides guidance from professor and chance to share ideas and problems with fellow students.

SOCI 612: Development Of Sociological Theory. Historical survey of the development of sociology and sociological theory beginning with contract theorists through the classic European theorists of the nineteenth century.

SOCI 655: Law And Society. Historical and structural development of legal systems. Emphasis on comparative legal systems in various cultures from Roman and Oriental law to Anglo-American legal systems.

SOCI 813: Current Issues In Social Theory. Deals with current controversies in social theory such as the public/private distinction, the development of symbolic interactionism and Neo-Marxism


Last Updated: April 1, 2010