Resume & CV

Scroll down for an overview of my work. Click for a copy of my academic CV [pdf]. 


I was born in Belgium, where I lived in Stokkem and attended high school at St. Jan Berchmanscollege in Genk. I studied at the Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven, receiving masters-level degrees in Sociology in 1986 and in Cultural Anthropology in 1987. In 1990, I obtained an MA from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Hull, England. Between 1989 and 1992, I was an assistant in the Criminology program of the Law Department at K.U. Leuven. In 1992 I came to the United States and received my PhD in sociology from the University of Colorado in 1996. I have since held academic positions at Kenyon College, Purdue University, and the University of South Carolina.


Academic Positions 

Professor (since 2010), Associate Professor (2005-2010), Assistant Professor (2002-2005), University of South Carolina, Department of Sociology, Columbia, SC, 2002-present.

Assistant Professor of Sociology, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, 1997-2002.

Visiting Assistant Professor, Kenyon College, Law and Society Program, Gambier, Ohio, 1996-1997.

Graduate employment: Assistant/Instructor, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado, Boulder, 1992-1996; Assistant, Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven, Belgium, Department of Criminology, 1989-1992.


Ph.D. Sociology, University of Colorado, Boulder, 1996.
Dissertation: “Borders of Police Force: Historical Foundations of International Policing Between Germany and the United States.” Revised for publication as Policing World Society (Oxford University Press 2002).
M.A. Sociology of Developing Societies, University of Hull, England, 1990.
Thesis on “Processual Symbolic Analysis in the Writings of Victor W. Turner". [online as pdf file]
Special Diploma Social and Cultural Anthropology, Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven, Belgium, 1987.
Thesis on “The Anthropology of Space” (in Dutch). [online as pdf file]
Licentiate Sociology, Candidate Social Sciences, Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven, Belgium, 1983, 1986.
Thesis on “The Sociological Concept of Anomie” (in Dutch). [online as pdf file]


My specialty areas are sociology of law and social control, popular culture, and sociological theory.

My work in the area of law and social control includes several themes. First, recent research involves a study of the global diffusion of anti-police violence. This work extends from my research on the police dimension of counter-terrorism that culminated in my book The Policing of Terrorism: Organizational and Global Perspectives (Routledge 2010). Related work explores the sociology of (counter)terrorism, which evolved in the anthology Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism: Criminological Perspectives (2004) and will be the focus of another edited volume, Terrorism and Counterterrorism Today (2015). Second, I research the history and contemporary conditions of international police cooperation. This work culminated in a book, Policing World Society (Oxford University Press 2002), and several research articles. Third, I connect my interests in law and social control with theoretical issues in sociology. In my book Sociology of Law: Visions of a Scholarly Tradition (Cambridge University Press 2008), I analyze the history and systematics of the sociology of law. Presently in progress, also, is a multi-volume Encyclopedia of Social Control to be published in 2017.

Recent interests explore contemporary issues of popular culture, especially fame and music, themes which connect with my initial specialization in cultural sociology and my background in cultural anthropology. Starting 2011, I organized a course on the sociology of the fame (, and I have been publishing various papers on music and fame. Relatedly, I also teach a course in visual sociology, and I have edited books on Music and Law (2013) and Popular Culture, Crime, and Social Control (2010). Other work on culture addresses such topics as the movies of Alfred Hitchcock, music censorship, and the anthropology of Victor Turner.

Much of my work is of a global and/or comparative/historical nature. This interest is reflected throughout my studies on various substantive issues. I have also merged a global concern with my interest in the sociological profession in the form of an edited volume, Sociologists in a Global Age: Biographical Perspectives (Ashgate 2007), in which sixteen leading international sociologists share their personal and professional experiences of becoming practitioners in the field.

Throughout my sociological work, I devote much attention to give adequate theoretical expression to the social structures and processes my empirical work is devoted to. Besides articles and chapters, my publications on sociological theory include the edited volumes Sociological Theory and Criminological Research (Elsevier 2006) and Habermas, Modernity and Law (Sage 1996). Related theoretical research projects involve several works on classical and contemporary theories, such as Robert Merton's anomie theory and Simmel's influence on the sociology of money.

I have not only published consistently, ever since my first article appeared in 1989, but I have also published very broadly in different outlets in sociology, criminology, criminal justice, theory, history, international studies, and culture. In this way, I seek my work to reach many audiences. I hope this website also contributes to that goal.

See the Books and Articles & Essays pages for online copies of my writings.


The courses I presently teach at the University of South Carolina include:
  • Sociology of Law - SOCY 540. Undergraduate course.
  • Sociology of Social Control - SOCY 507. Undergraduate course.  
  • Sociological Theory - SOCY 302. Undergraduate theory.
  • Society Through the Lens - SOCY 368. Undergraduate topics.
  • Lady Gaga and the Sociology of the Fame - SOCY 398D. Topics course.
  • Contemporary Scholars - SOCY 711. Graduate theory seminar.
  • Scientific Methods and Sociological Inquiry - SOCY 701.
  • Law and Social Control - SOCY 791D. Graduate seminar.
See the Teaching Pages on this site for further information.


Sabbatical leave for research on social control and popular culture, Spring 2016.

Series Editor, Sociology of Crime, Law, and Deviance, published by Emerald Group, since 2004.

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, Member of the review panel for Insight Grants, Spring 2012.

Sabbatical leave for research in Qu├ębec, Sweden, Scotland, and Germany, funded by the College of Arts and Sciences and the Department of Sociology, University of South Carolina, Spring 2009.

National Science Foundation, Member of the Law and Social Science Advisory Panel for Dissertation Improvement Grant Proposals, Spring 2009.

Deputy Editor, Journal of Criminal Justice Education, 2005-2008.

International Scientific Board member, Sociologia e Politiche Sociali (Italy), since 2012.

Co-Director, with Huseyin Durmaz and Georgi Glonti, Advanced Research Workshop on “Understanding and Responding to Terrorism: A Multi-dimensional Approach,” funded by the NATO Programme Security Through Science, Washington, DC, September 8-9, 2006.

Academic Fellowship, The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, program on “Defending Democracy, Defeating Terrorism,” Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies, May-June 2004.

Mentor of the Year Award from the American Society of Criminology, November 2000.

Purdue-Hamburg Faculty Exchange, Hamburg University, June 2000.

National Science Foundation, Doctoral Dissertation Grant, Law and Social Sciences Division, #SBR-9411478 (co-PI), September 1994 - August 1995.

See Books and Articles & Essays pages for publications.
The webpages on (@mathieudeflem) are hosted on Blogger and privately maintained by Mathieu Deflem.