Sociologist, author

Barry writes about: Psychology, Society

One of the country’s leading sociologists, Barry Glassner is the author of seven books on contemporary social issues, including the bestseller The Culture of Fear: Why Americans Are Afraid of the Wrong Things as well as The Gospel of Food, an argument for abandoning food fads and mythical beliefs about diet. Glassner cohosts the podcast FearNOT with comedian Alonzo Bodden, which debunks the fearmongering we hear every day in the news.

Formerly Professor and Executive Vice Provost at the University of Southern California and President of Lewis and Clark College, Glassner has published widely in research journals such as The American Sociological Review and the American Journal of Psychiatry as well as in media outlets such as The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. He has also appeared on numerous television shows, including CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” ABC’s “Good Morning America,” and MSNBC’s “Hardball,” and on radio shows including National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered,” “Fresh Air,” and “Talk of the Nation.”

The short answer to why Americans harbor so many misbegotten fears is that immense power and money await those who tap into our moral insecurities and supply us with symbolic substitutes.


Explore the Network