Black is a University Professor of the Social Sciences at the University
of Virginia. After completing his doctorate at the University of Michigan
in 1968, Professor Black pursued postdoctoral studies as a Russell Sage
Fellow in Law and Social Science at Yale Law School, and continued at
Yale University with appointments in both the Law School and the Department
of Sociology. In 1979 he moved to Harvard University, where he again
held appointments in both the Law School and the Department of Sociology.
He came to the University of Virginia in 1985, where he has occasionally
taught in the Law School as well. His University Professorship entitles
him to teach in any school or department of the University.
sociologist with numerous publications in the sociology of law, morality,
and conflict, Professor Black's work has increasingly expanded to include
such projects as a theory of the differential success of ideas, a theory
of scienticity, a theory of scientific theory, and a theory of the behavior
of supernatural beings such as God. His most recent book, The Social
Structure of Right and Wrong, was awarded both the 1994 Theory Prize
and a Distinguished Book Award of the American Sociological Association.
He also authored The Behavior of Law (translated into several
languages), The Manners and Customs of the Police, and Sociological
Justice. A recent article, "The Epistemology of Pure Sociology,"
(published in 1995 in Law & Social Inquiry) won a Distinguished
Scholarship Award from the American Sociological Association. He often
serves on the editorial board of scholarly journals, and edits a series
of books called "Studies on Law and Social Control" for Oxford
University Press. He has been invited to lecture in numerous countries
abroad, including Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Holland, France, Scotland,
England, Poland, and Japan.
Black is the founder of pure sociology, a sociological paradigm that
includes no psychology or even people as such, and will soon publish
a book on the subject entitled The Death of the Person. A second
book-length project is a general theory that predicts and explains the
occurrence of conflict in all human relationships. A symposium on Professor
Black's work can be found in the November 2002 issue of Contemporary
Sociology. For additional information, see " The Geometry of
Law: An Interview with Donald Black" published in June 2002 issue
of the International Journal of the Sociology of Law.