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Jamie Small

Associate Professor; Director of the Women's and Gender Studies Program

Full-Time Faculty

College of Arts and Sciences: Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work


Email: Jamie Small
Phone: 937-229-2168
SJH 419


  • Ph.D., Sociology and Women's Studies, University of Michigan
  • M.A., Sexuality Studies, San Francisco State University
  • B.A., English Literature, Indiana University


Jamie L. Small is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program at the University of Dayton. She completed her doctoral degree in Sociology and Women’s Studies at the University of Michigan, and she also earned a master’s degree in Sexuality Studies at San Francisco State University, where she discovered the delights of the social sciences. Her areas of specialization include law and society, gender-based violence, human rights, international development, sexualities, public policy and feminist pedagogy. She is a skilled communicator who builds bridges between academia, civil society and government.

Professor Small’s research and teaching agenda centers broadly on the intersection of law, crime, and gender, with a focus on sexual violence and the legal construction of masculine vulnerability. Her approach to studying sexual violence is somewhat unconventional because she investigates cultural meanings associated with sexual violence and how narratives of harm, vulnerability and victimization emerge in social institutions. Much of her research focuses on the logics of prosecutorial discretion in sexual assault cases, including child sexual abuse, statutory rape, and sexual bullying among teenaged boys. Her publications have been recognized with scholarly awards and featured in several “best of” article compilations. 

Currently, Professor Small is co-Principal Investigator for a large-scale project that aims to prevent radicalization to extremist violence in Southwest Ohio. She leads a team that takes a public health approach to violence prevention. Their activities focus on media literacy, youth resilience, raising awareness about the pathways to violence, and strengthening community networks. The project is funded by the Department of Homeland Security’s Targeted Violence and Terrorism Prevention Grants Program.

From 2020-22, Professor Small was a Science and Technology Policy Fellow through the American Association for the Advancement of Science. This prestigious public service program places scientists in the federal government to help solve our most pressing societal challenges. Professor Small’s placement was at the United States Agency for International Development in the Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment Hub. In her role as a Gender-Based Violence Advisor, she managed foreign assistance grants and contracts; served as a technical expert on gender equity; and contributed to the development of U.S. government strategy and policy. She worked closely with colleagues in the State Department’s Office of Global Women’s Issues and the White House Gender Policy Council, and she traveled to field offices in El Salvador, Guatemala, and South Africa. Her substantive areas of expertise in this sector included migration, LGBTQI+ inclusion, climate and environment, and democracy and governance. In addition, she was a lead architect and drafter of the 2022 update to the U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally

Earlier in her career, she worked in the violence prevention, sexuality education, and HIV/AIDS fields in San Francisco, Montreal, and Detroit.

Research interests

  • Law and Society
  • Sexual Violence
  • Masculinity Studies
  • Human Rights
  • Media Studies
  • Feminist Legal Theory

Selected publications

Small, Jamie L. 2023. “‘Jocks Gone Wild’: Masculinity, Sexual Bullying, and the Legal Normalization of Boys’ Victimization,” Social Problems 70(1): 22-37.

Small, Jamie L. 2020. “Conceptualizing Consent: How Prosecutors Identify Sexual Victimization in Statutory Rape Cases,” Law & Social Inquiry 45(1): 111-131.

Small, Jamie L. 2019. “Constructing Sexual Harm: Prosecutorial Narratives of Children, Abuse, and the Disruption of Heterosexuality,” Gender & Society 33(4): 560-582.

Small, Jamie L. 2015. "Classing Sex Offenders: How Prosecutors and Defense Attorneys Differentiate Men Accused of Sexual Assault." Law & Society Review, 49(1): 109-141.

Small, Jamie L. 2012. "Trafficking in Truth: Media, Sexuality, and Human Rights Evidence." Feminist Studies, 38(2): 415-443.