David M. Boden

Associate Professor of Sociology and Anthropology

Areas of Specialization and Interest

Identity and Community
Neo-Nomadic Communities
Law & Social Policy
Science Fiction
Pseudoscience and the Occult
Wiccan / Pagan Communities
Contemporary Social Theory


PhD (Sociology) Northwestern University
MA  (Sociology) Northwestern University
JD The College of William and Mary
BA  (Sociology) The Johns Hopkins University

Additional Training:
Certification in Garden Design - Chicago Botanic Garden
Certification in Dendrology Methods - Rampart Scotland
Graduate Courses in Museum Studies- Virginia Commonwealth University
Pre-Columbian Lithic Artifact Identification - Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation

Courses Taught

Social Aspects of the Human Body
Social Life of Food
Chicago’s Parks and Gardens
Introduction to Sociology and Anthropology
Principles of Social Organization
Social Structure through Film
Social Problems and Policy
Supernatural and Paranormal
American Celebrations
Qualitative Research Methods: Design
Qualitative Research Methods: Analysis
Gender Roles
Queer Theory
American Masculinities
Heresy and Orthodoxy
Sociology of Knowledge
Law, Culture and Society
Science Fiction and Social Theory
Contemporary Social Theory
Introduction to Ancient Greece


“Alienation of sexuality in the occupation of male erotic dancing” Journal of Homosexuality (2007) 53(1-2):129-52.

“Interview with D. M. Boden” Journal of Homosexuality (2007) 53(1-2):210-232.

“Stability of student attitudes regarding homosexuality and masculinity: A longitudinal study” Indiana Academy of Social Sciences, Vol. 9 (2005).

“An exercise in poetic transcription” Journal of Creative Social Discourse Vol. 3, No. 1 (1994).


Titillation and the Alienation of Sexuality within the Occupation of Male Erotic Dancing

This ethnographic study emphasizes male exotic dancing as a career and investigates a predominantly male-for-male gender arrangement of the occupation. Analysis of the data suggests that the men in this occupation understand their labor as titillation, a pleasurable erotic flirtation, for the entertainment of the consumer. A central argument is that sexuality can be divided. One sexuality is constructed, alienated and commodified based upon the desires of the consumer. This division allows the other more immediate “felt” sexuality of the performer to remain intact.

Conference Work

Midwest Sociological Society
Chair, Local Arrangements Committee, 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016

Invited Talks

Chicago Botanic Garden. Ancient Garden History – Colloqium. February 2011.

Indiana Academy of Social Sciences. October 2004. Annual Conference.Gender Issues Panel Presenation. “Stability of student attitudes regarding homosexuality and masculinity.”

Northwestern University. October 2001. Qualitative Research Methodology Colloquium. Featured speaker. “Issues of ethics and entry in deviant subcultures.”  

Leo Burnett - USA. October 1998.
Gender Evolution: Agency Trend Initiative. Invited Presenter and Panelist.

Other Talks

Lake Forest College - Commencement Honors Convocation. May 2013.
Great Teacher Award - Recipient Address.
“Practicing Yoga: Learning to Learn”

Lake Forest College - Commencement. May 2004.
Key Address Speaker with 3 other recent recipients of Great Teacher Award  “Seven Minutes of Advice”

Lake Forest College - Commencement Honors Convocation. May 2003.
Great Teacher Award - Recipient Address.
 “A Lesson in Irony”

Awards and Honors

Great Teacher Award: Recipient. Lake Forest College 2013.

Commitment to Student Development Award: Nominee. Lake Forest College 2013.

Great Teacher Award: Recipient. Lake Forest College 2003.

Advisor of the Year: Nominee. Lake Forest College 2003.

Center for Teaching Excellence - Teaching Assistant Training Program: Steering Committee 1995.

Associated Student Government Faculty Honor Roll: Northwestern University 1994-95.

Robert F. Winch Award for Teaching Excellence: Honorable Mention (Repeat Recipient) Northwestern University 1993.

Robert F. Winch Award for Teaching Excellence:  Recipient.  Northwestern University 1992.

University Fellowship - Sociology:  Northwestern University 1990-92.

Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence:  Paralegal Career Institute, Houston, Texas 1988.

Teaching Experience 

2007-present  Associate Professor of Sociology, Lake Forest College

2001-2007 Assistant Professor of Sociology, Lake Forest College

1996-2001 Instructor in Sociology, Lake Forest College

1993-1998 Instructor in Sociology, Northwestern University

1993-1996 Instructor in Sociology, University of Wisconsin

1991-1993 Teaching Assistant, Northwestern University

1988-1990 Instructor, Career Institute (paralegal), Houston

Research Experience 

2009-present - Research on the practice, aesthetics, and symbolic meanings within vernacular gardening

2000-present - Long-term participant observation research with the liveaboard community of the Florida Keys

2011 - Archaeological research and site survey for White Castle Hillfort Project, Garvald, Scotland

1994-2000 - Participant observation and interview research with male erotic dancers for dissertation project

1991-1993 - Participant observation, surveys, archival and text interviews of gay pagan community

1985-1987 - Identification and cataloguing of extensive lithic artifact collection, Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation

Professional Memberships 

Midwest Sociological Society