Orly Clerge

Orly Clerge Portrait

Position Title
Associate Professor

2268 SSH


  • Ph.D. Sociology & Social Demography, Brown University
  • M.A. Sociology & Social Demography, Brown University
  • B.A. Sociology & French, Wheaton College


Orly is an author and sociologist whose research focuses on race, migration, cities, inequality, and identity. Orly's first book The New Noir: Race, Identity & Diaspora in Black Suburbia (University of California Press, 2019; winner of the Mary Douglas Prize for Best Book in the ASA Culture Section, and SSSP C. Wright Mills Book Award finalist) is a comprehensive exploration of the making of Black diasporic suburbs. The New Noir examines how nationality and citizenship are negotiated by the Black middle class and is the first book in a series on the politics of Black identity in the 21st century. Orly is currently crafting a book on the political identities of Black millennials during the Obama and Trump era. Tentatively titled Young World, this book is an intersectional analysis of how Black youth growing up in middle-class neighborhoods construct and challenge ideas about opportunity, political solidarity, and racial progress.

Orly also co-edited Stories from the Front of the Room: How Higher Education Faculty of Color Survive & Thrive in the Academy (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017) which uncovers the daily encounters underrepresented faculty at historically White college and universities have with racial exclusion and their strategies of resistance. This volume is a collection of letters from dynamic faculty of color across the country who dare to make public their private racialized interactions with other faculty, administrators, students, and staff. These letters are paired with mentor letters from senior faculty who offer tools for creating racial equity in higher education. Orly's other writings have appeared in Ethnic & Racial Studies, The New Black Sociologist, Sociology Compass, and Population, Space, and Place.


SOC 143a: Urban Society

SOC 128: Sociology of Race & Ethnicity

SOC 199: Youth of Color