The campus community is very welcoming and is a place where people can come together and learn from each other no matter their differences.

Zachary Palmer, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor and Graduate Coordinator for Sociology

  • Faculty
Sociology and Criminal Justice
McDowell Administration Building 102F
Related Department
Kirksville, MO
College Major
Year Graduated

Zachary Palmer has always been interested in how society shapes people. He found sociology to be a great field to answer big questions like ‘how do power and privilege operate in society?' as well as more idiosyncratic questions like ‘why do some adult men love My Little Pony?' He is always interested in the ‘weird' and the ‘why' and loves to share the joy of sociology with students.

A Conversation with Dr. Palmer

What would you tell a student who is thinking about attending A&M-Commerce?

“What makes TAMUC so special is the diversity on campus. In class, you can have 18-year-olds straight from high school learning alongside 45-year-olds who are going back to school and people with all sorts of different backgrounds. The campus community is very welcoming and is a place where people can come together and learn from each other no matter their differences.”

What draws you to your discipline?

“In Invitation to Sociology, Peter Berger writes that the most important characteristic needed to be a good sociologist is curiosity, describing sociology as an outgrowth of the desire to look inside the windows of other people's houses to find out what is going on inside. While I'm not that nosy, I've definitely always had that sense of curiosity about other people. Many of my research projects begin with me thinking that something is “weird” and wanting to learn more. The great thing about sociology is that it covers such a wide range of topics, it's a field where there really is something for anyone and it's hard to imagine ever getting bored with it.”

What has been your favorite course to teach?

“I love teaching Racial and Ethnic Diversity because it is such an incredibly relevant and important topic. There is a very interesting historical component to the class too because so much of what we take for granted about race is rooted in historical context. Another thing I like about the class is learning from students about their unique experiences and perspectives during class discussion.”

Educational Background

  • Ph.D., Sociology, Purdue University, 2019
  • M.A., Sociology, Ball State University, 2014
  • B.S., Sociology, Truman State University, 2012

Academic Positions

  • Graduate Coordinator, Sociology, Texas A&M University-Commerce, 2021-Present
  • Assistant Professor, Sociology and Criminal Justice, Texas A&M University-Commerce, 2019-Present

Research Interests

  • Gender and masculinities
  • Inequality
  • Culture/media

Professional Organizations

  • American Sociological Association
  • Sociologists for Women in Society
  • Alpha Kappa Delta

Featured Courses

SOC1301 Introduction to Sociology

SOC 312 Sociology of Gender

SOC 370 Racial and Ethnic Diversity

SOC 316 Marriage and Family

SOC 436 Sociological Theory

SOC 574 Sociological Theory

Selected Publications

  • Palmer, Zachary D. forthcoming. “‘I Don't Like to Separate Myself by Gender': How Women Navigate Hybrid Masculinities in the Brony Community.” Journal of Gender Studies.
  • Palmer, Zachary D. 2022. “‘I'm Going to Love and Tolerate the Shit Out of You': Hybrid Masculinities in the Brony Community.” Men and Masculinities 25(1): 87-105.
  • Rochford, Elle and Zachary D. Palmer. 2022. “Trans TikTok: Sharing Information and Forming Community” in TikTok Cultures in the United States, ed. Trevor Boffone. Lordon, UK: Routledge.
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