Pepper Glass

Jun 30, 2020

Misplacing Ogden, Utah

Race, Class, Immigration, and the Construction of Urban Reputation

University of Utah Press 2020

Pepper Glass’s new book Misplacing Ogden, Utah: Race, Class, Immigration, and the Construction of Urban Reputation (University of Utah Press, 2020) evaluates the widely held assumption that divisions between urban areas are reflections of varying amounts of crime, deprivation, and other social, cultural, and economic problems. Glass uses Ogden, Utah as a case study to argue that urban reputations are “moral frontiers” that uphold and create divides between the reputations of members of a community. As a working-class city, Ogden, Utah has long held a history of racial and immigrant diversity. Among many Utahns this community gained a reputation as a "sin city" in the middle of an entrenched religious culture. Glass blends ethnographic research with historical accounts, census reports, and other secondary sources to provide insight into Ogden’s reputation, past and present. This book captures the perception of residents of the entire city as opposed to only a sector of the community. Glass’s unique approach suggests that we can do a better job at confronting urban problems by rethinking the assumptions we have about place and promoting interventions that breakdown boundaries. Pepper Glass, Ph.D. is associate professor of sociology at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. He has published his research on racial inequality, social movements, and youth culture in Ethnic and Racial Studies, Mobilization, and the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography.
Michael O. Johnston, Ph.D. is assistant professor of sociology at William Penn University. He earned his doctoral degree in Public Policy and Public Administration from Walden University. He researches place and the process of place making as it is presented in everyday social interactions. You can find more about him on his website, follow him on Twitter @ProfessorJohnst or email him at

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Michael Johnston

Michael O. Johnston, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at William Penn University.

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