About

I am an Assistant Professor of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Portland State University. I received my PhD in sociology and a certificate in women’s and gender studies from the University of Oregon.

My book, Men in Place: Trans Masculinity, Race, and Sexuality in America, was published with the University of Minnesota Press in March 2019. As masculinity is being contested in the current era, I use an intersectional approach in Men in Place to explore the shifting meanings of being a man across cities and in rural areas of the United States. I illustrate that individual men do not have one way to be masculine—rather, their ways of being men shift between different spaces and places. Through in-depth interviews with transgender men in the U.S. West, Southeast, and Midwest,  I show how the places and spaces men inhabit are fundamental to their experiences of race, sexuality, and gender.

Book Cover: Men in Place: Trans Masculinity, Race, and Sexuality in America by Miriam J. Abelson

My book is part of of my broad interests in the intersection of gender, race, and sexuality and space;  masculinities; critical race studies; and queer and transgender studies. I focus on intersections of gender, sexuality, race, and class to understand how those aspects of social location are created and maintained across urban and rural spaces. Overall, I undertake this research using sociological methods to explore questions of identity and inequality in sociology and the interdisciplinary fields of women’s and gender studies and ethnic studies.

My ongoing research and writing projects focus on LGBTQ youth; whiteness, nation, and sexuality in the rural Northwest; and transgender people’s experiences of discrimination and violence.

See Research for more information on my other projects.