Alone in Publand: Leaving Academics to Themselves

Gianna F. Mosser*, Hannah Wohl, Gary Alan Fine

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In recent decades, the number of print and electronic outlets for scholarly publication across the humanities and social sciences has grown exponentially. Business models have shifted from university presses who offer subject-based clusters of journals to include commercial publishers and open-access digital platforms. With greater pressure than ever to publish early and often for those on and just out of reach of the tenure track, concerns with the timeline to publish and the number of outlets for publication become tantamount to the texts themselves. But what happens to the literature? When does readability no longer remain a commitment an author makes to its audience or editors make to their authors? This article argues for a persistent renewal of the journal editor’s commitment to providing authors with substantive peer review and suggestions for workable revisions. Publishers of scholarly content should also renew their commitment to professional copyediting in order to create lasting contributions to sociological literature that can be digested, interpreted, and built upon by researchers and students alike.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-252
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Sociologist
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • Copyediting
  • Journal publishing
  • Proofreading
  • Sociological writing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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