Lynn Smith-Lovin

Lynn Smith-Lovin

Robert L. Wilson Professor of Sociology in Trinity College of Arts and Sciences

External Address: 
339 Soc/Psych Bldg, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708
Internal Office Address: 
Box 90088, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708-0088
(919) 660-5786


I study emotion, identity, and action. I’m interested in the basic question of how identities affect social interaction. I use experimental, observational, survey and simulation methods to describe how identities, actions and emotions are interrelated. The experiments I do usually involve creating social situations where unusual things happen to people, then seeing how they respond behaviorally or emotionally. I observe small task group interactions to see how identities influence conversational behavior. My survey work often focuses on gender and other social positions that influence the groups and networks in which people are imbedded. My simulations studies involve affect control theory, a mathematical model of how identities, actions and emotions affect one another. Now, I’m putting affect control theory together with McPherson’s ecological theory of affiliation to show how social systems, identities, and emotional experience are connected.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 1978

  • M.A., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 1976

  • B.A., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 1972

Smith-Lovin, L. ““Emotion Management as Emotional Labor.”.” Required Reading: Sociology’s Most Influential Books, edited by Dan Clawson, Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1998.

McPherson, J. Miller, and L. Smith-Lovin. “A Comparative Ecology of Five Nations.” Ecological Models of Organizations, edited by Glenn R. Carroll, Ballinger, 1998, pp. 85–110.

Ibarra, Hermina, and L. Smith-Lovin. “Alternative Routes: A Social Network Perspective on Gender and Careers.” Creating Tomorrow’s Organizations, edited by Cary Cooper and Susan Jackson, Wiley, 1997, pp. 359–84.

Smith-Lovin, L. “"The Sociology of Affect and Emotion.".” Sociological Perspectives on Social Psychology, edited by Karen Cook et al., Boston: Allyn and Bacon, 1995, pp. 118–48.

McPherson, Miller, and L. Smith-Lovin. “You Are Who You Know: A Network Perspective on Gender.” Theory on Gender/Feminism on Theory., edited by Paula England, New York: Aldine, 1993, pp. 223–41.

McPherson, Miller, and L. Smith-Lovin. “Eliminating Choice: Reply to Folbre.” Theory on Gender/Feminism on Theory, edited by Paula England, Aldine, 1993.

McPherson, Miller, and L. Smith-Lovin. “Some Disintegrating Thoughts on Structure and Agency: Reply to Molm.” Theory on Gender/Feminism on Theory, edited by Paula England, Aldine, 1993.

Douglas, William T., and L. Smith-Lovin. “An affect control analysis of two religious subcultures.” Social Perspectives on Emotion, edited by D. Franks and V. Gecas, JAI Press, 1992, pp. 217–47.

Smith-Lovin, L. “"An Affect Control View of Cognition and Emotion.".” Self and Society: A Social Cognition Approach, edited by Judy Howard and Peter Callero, Cambridge University Press, 1992, pp. 143–69.

Robinson, Dawn, and L. Smith-Lovin. “Gender and Conversational Dynamics.” Gender and Interaction, edited by Cecilia Ridgeway, Springer-Verlag, 1992, pp. 122–56.


Robinson, D. T., et al. “PHYSIOLOGICAL MEASURES OF THEORETICAL CONCEPTS: SOME IDEAS FOR LINKING DEFLECTION AND EMOTION TO PHYSICAL RESPONSES DURING INTERACTION.” Advances in Group Processes, vol. 21, Dec. 2004, pp. 77–115. Scopus, doi:10.1016/S0882-6145(04)21004-9. Full Text

McPherson, M., and L. Smith-Lovin. “Cohesion and membership duration: Linking groups, relations and individuals in an ecology of affiliation.” Advances in Group Processes, vol. 19, Jan. 2002, pp. 1–36. Scopus, doi:10.1016/S0882-6145(02)19002-3. Full Text

Okamoto, Dina G., et al. “Measuring interruptions: Structural versus contextual approaches.” Social Psychology Quarterly, vol. 65, Jan. 2002, pp. 38–55.

Okamoto, D. G., et al. “Measuring interruption: Syntactic and contextual methods of coding conversation.” Social Psychology Quarterly, vol. 65, no. 1, Jan. 2002, pp. 38–55. Scopus, doi:10.2307/3090167. Full Text

Robinson, Dawn, and L. Smith-Lovin. “Getting a Laugh: A Look at Humor in Task Group Discussions.” Social Forces, vol. 80, Sept. 2001, pp. 123–58.

McPherson, M., et al. “Birds of a feather: Homophily in social networks.” Annual Review of Sociology, vol. 27, Jan. 2001, pp. 415–44. Scopus, doi:10.1146/annurev.soc.27.1.415. Full Text

Tsoudis, O., and L. Smith-Lovin. “Criminal identity: The key to situational construals in mock criminal court cases.” Sociological Spectrum, vol. 21, no. 1, Jan. 2001, pp. 3–31. Scopus, doi:10.1080/02732170120383. Full Text

Robinson, D. T., and L. Smith-Lovin. “Getting a laugh: Gender, status, and humor in task discussions.” Social Forces, vol. 80, no. 1, Jan. 2001, pp. 123–58. Scopus, doi:10.1353/sof.2001.0085. Full Text

Okamoto, D. G., and L. Smith-Lovin. “Changing the subject: Gender, status, and the dynamics of topic change.” American Sociological Review, vol. 66, no. 6, Jan. 2001, pp. 852–73. Scopus, doi:10.2307/3088876. Full Text

Tsoudis, Olga, and L. Smith-Lovin. “Defining the Situation: Emotional Display and Construals about Crime.” Sociological Spectrum, vol. 21, Jan. 2001.