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Faculty | Assistant Professor

RJ Maratea

Contact Information


media and culture, crime and deviance, social control, capital punishment


Dr. Maratea's research interests focus on (1) mass communication and the production of culture, criminal and deviant identities, and social control, and (2) capital punishment. He received his Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Delaware and has published numerous books and peer-reviewed articles in journals, such as Social Problems, Symbolic Interaction, and Journal of Contemporary Ethnography. His most recent book, Killing with Prejudice: Institutionalized Racism in American Capital Punishment (NYU Press, 2019) is a history of the Supreme Court ruling in McCleskey v. Kemp (1987) that chronicles the history or racialized punishment in the United States and the litigation process that culminated in what has been called "the Dred Scott decision of our time."

Select Publications

Monahan, Brian and R.J. Maratea. 2021. “The Art of the Spiel: Analyzing Donald Trump’s Tweets as Gonzo Storytelling.” Symbolic Interaction.

Maratea, R.J. 2019. Killing with Prejudice: Institutionalized Racism in American Capital Punishment. New York: NYU Press.

Maratea, R.J. and Brian Monahan. 2016. Social Problems in Popular Culture. Chicago: Policy Press.

Keys, David P. and R.J. Maratea (eds). 2016. Race and the Death Penalty: The Legacy of McCleskey v. Kemp. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner.

Maratea, R.J. 2014. The Politics of the Internet: Political Claims-making in Cyberspace and How It’s Affecting Modern Political Activism. Lanham, MD: Lexington.

Maratea, R.J. and Brian Monahan. 2013. “Crime Control as Mediated Spectacle: The Institutionalization of Gonzo Rhetoric in Modern Media and Politics.” Symbolic Interaction 36(3):261-74.

Maratea, R.J. 2011. “Screwing the Pooch: Legitimizing Accounts in a Zoophilia On-line Community.” Deviant Behavior 32(10):918-43.

Maratea, R.J. 2008. “The e-Rise and Fall of Social Problems: The Blogosphere as a Public Arena.” Social Problems 55(1):139-60.

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