Carrie Lane

Voice: 657-278-7359
Fax: 657-278-5820
Dept: 657-278-2441

Cal State University, Fullerton American Studies 

800 N. State College Blvd. UH-313 Fullerton, CA. 92831

OFFICE: University Hall (UH) 410

Carrie M. Lane, PhD

Professor of American Studies


Study abroad with me in Copenhagen, Denmark in July 2018! CSUF students can earn 6 units upper-division GE (or grad) credit in a four-week study abroad program themed around food, sustainability, and multiculturalism. Program includes gourmet meals, walking tours, volunteering, a field trip to Sweden, and more!

I am pleased to announce the publication of my new book Anthropologies of Unemployment: New Perspectives on Work and Its Absence , co-edited with Jong Bum Kwon, which features studies of unemployment from countries around the world. 


2005, Ph.D, American Studies, Yale University

1997, BA, Cultural Anthropology, Princeton University

Curriculum Vitae (pdf)PDF File Opens in new window


Changing Nature of Work and Careers in the United States, Anthropology of the United States; Ethnographic Research and Writing; American Community Studies; American Business and Labor History; U.S. Women's History; Theories and Methods of American Studies. 



A Company of One: Insecurity, Independence, and the New World of White-Collar Unemployment. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2011. (Winner of the 2012 Society for the Anthropology of Work Book Award; Finalist for the 2012 Book Award of the Society for Economic Anthropology)


Edited Volume

Co-Editor with Jong Bum Kwon, Anthropologies of Unemployment: The Changing Study of Work and Its Absence. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2016.


Journal Articles

Co-authored with Adam Golub, “Zombie Companies and Corporate Survivors,”PDF File Anthropology NOW 7.2 (2015): 47-54.   

“‘If The Shoe Ain’t Your Size, It Ain’t Gonna Fit’: Ideologies of Professional and Marital Instability among US White-Collar Workers,”PDF File Iowa Journal of Cultural Studies 12/13 (2010): 37-54.

“Man Enough to Let My Wife Support Me: How Changing Models of Career and Gender Are Reshaping the Experience of Unemployment,”PDF File American Ethnologist 36.4 (2009): 681-692.

“Like Exporting Baseball to Japan: U.S. Tech Workers Respond to Offshoring,” Anthropology of Work Review 25.3-4 (November 2005): 18-26.


Book Chapters

“Unemployed Tech Workers’ Ambivalent Embrace of the Flexible Ideal,” Beyond the Cubicle: Insecurity Culture and the Flexible Self , Allison Pugh, ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2016.

“The Limits of Liminality: Anthropological Approaches to Unemployment in the United States,” Anthropologies of Unemployment: The Changing Study of Work and Its Absence, Jong Bum Kwon and Carrie Lane, eds. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2016.

Co-authored with Jong Bum Kwon, “Introduction,” Anthropologies of Unemployment: The Changing Study of Work and Its Absence, Jong Bum Kwon and Carrie Lane, eds. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2016.

“Man Enough to Let My Wife Support Me: Gender and Unemployment among Middle-Class U.S. Tech Workers,” The Gender, Culture, and Power Reader, edited by Dorothy Hodgson, 333-341. New York: Oxford University Press, 2015.

"How To Be a Professional Organizer in the United States," A World of Work: Imagined Manuals for Real Jobs, edited by Ilana Gershon, 129-145. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2015.


Solicited Articles

"The Work of Care, Caring at Work: An Introduction," Anthropology of Work Review 38.1 (July 2017): 3-7.

“The Self-Assembled Career,” The Hedgehog Review 18.1 (Spring 2016): 88-95.

"Dueling Interpretations of Professional Organizers,"PDF File Contexts 14.4: 62-64.

"What I've Learned from Professional Organizers."PDF File Orange County Register, CSU Fullerton Section, Living Textbook Series (September 11, 2013): 2. 

"Finding the Fit in Organizing."PDF File Orange County Register, CSU Fullerton Section, Living Textbook Series (September 4, 2013): 3. 

"What's Driving the Demand for Professional Organizers?"PDF File Orange County Register, CSU Fullerton Section, Living Textbook Series (August 28, 2013): 3. 

“Work and Unemployment in the Global Labor Market,” Anthropology News 46.3 (March 2005): 21.

“Teaching Work to Workers,” Anthropology News 46.9 (December 2005): 59.


Book Reviews

Good Jobs America: Making Work Better for EveryonePDF File by Paul Osterman and Beth Shulman Contemporary Sociology 42.3 (2013): 410-11.

Counter Culture: The American Coffee Shop Waitress by Candacy Taylor, Anthropology of Work Review (2012): 49-51.    

The Managed Hand: Race, Gender, and the Body in Beauty Service Work by Miliann Kang, American Ethnologist 39.2 (2012): 462-3.

Headhunters: Matchmaking in the Labor Market by William Finlay and James E. Coverdill, Anthropology of Work Review24.1-2 (2003): 35-36

Minding the Store and Quest for the Best by Stanley Marcus, Journal of South Texas 16.1 (2003): 119-121.

Temps: The Many Faces of the Changing Workplace by Jackie Krasas Rogers, Anthropology of Work Review 22.2 (2001): 32-33.


Other Scholarly Work

Current research project: Professor Lane is currently researching the growing field of professional organizing, in which individuals and organizations hire organizers for tasks as diverse as cleaning out closets and garages, organizing paperwork, and reworking family schedules and workflow processes. In addition to interviewing organizers and their clients in cities across the country (but especially in Los Angeles and Orange County), as part of her research Lane is attending professional meetings and industry conferences and assisting on organizing jobs. This study considers what this fascinating and fast-growing industry can tell us about the changing nature of work and entrepreneurship, especially in the high-end service sector, and engages broader discussions around consumerism, gender, and quality of life in the contemporary United States. 


Tu/Th: 11:30am-12:30pm; Tu 2:30-3:30pm; & at other times by appointment


AMST 390: Disability and American Culture 17090: TuTh 10:00-11:15am / H-322

AMST 401T: American Culture through Ethnography 16902: TuTr 1:00-2:15pm / UH-240

AMST 499/599: Independent StudyAmerican Studies Internship / meetings scheduled individually with students