Zawadi Rucks Ahidiana

Zawadi Rucks Ahidiana's picture
Research Interests: 
urban sociology, race/ethnicity, cultural sociology, inequality
Curriculum Vitae: 
Profile: 

My research examines race and class inequality through the study of culture and urban development using survey data, documents, spatial data, and interviews.  My dissertation focuses specifically on what cultural representations contribute to common perceptions of gentrification.

The media produces and re-produces cultural meaning through the framing of their stories.  In my dissertation, I document the media’s depictions of gentrification in Baltimore, MD and San Francisco, CA from 1990 to 2014 including the common frames used to describe the process.  Drawing on quantitative and qualitative analyses of newspaper articles, I explain why perceptions of gentrification and its policy solutions are likely to vary over time and place as the local understanding of what gentrification “looks like” and its effects evolve.  I demonstrate how the media uses priming, associations, and evaluation to depict the process of gentrification. 

This research is supported by the American Association of University Women, the Institute of International Studies, the Institute for the Study of Societal Issues, and the Student Mentoring and Research Teams Program.

PhD Date:: 
May, 2018
Dissertation Title: 
Portraits of Gentrification: When Neighborhood Change Becomes News, 1990-2014
Dissertation Committee: 
Claude Fischer (co-chair), Margaret Weir (co-chair), Sandra Smith, Carolina Reid (Department of City and Regional Planning)