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Dr. Kristin Park Presents Research at North Central Sociological Association

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Posted on Monday, April 17, 2017

Dr. Kristin Park, professor of sociology, presented a talk titled “Evaluating Culture and Discovering Boundaries: Non-Amish Perceptions of and Experiences with the Old Order Amish" on April 1, 2017 at the annual meeting of the North Central Sociological Association in Indianapolis, IN

Dr. Park’s presentation described findings from her ongoing qualitative research consisting of in-depth interviews with non-Amish individuals about their experiences with and perceptions of members of the regional Old Order Amish community.  Many participants positively evaluated the hard work, honesty and generosity of their Amish neighbors, as well as their living by Christian teachings.

“This research is the first stage of an ongoing project,” says Park. “In the second stage I plan to interview members of the Amish community about their non-Amish interactions and how they feel they are perceived by the “English,” as well as any other issues that my research participants would like to discuss.”

Some participants criticized racial and ethnic prejudice and the community's rejection of safety devices. Dr. Park’s findings were analyzed in terms of how criticisms of Amish practices align with or challenge a culturally relativist perspective.

For more information, contact Dr. Kristin Park at or 724-946-7251.