A recently submitted article that has since been discovered to be false, circulated through Gender & Society recently. Through a rigorous process, editors for Gender & Society found that the paper lacked the empirical data necessary for the flagship publication of Sociologists for Women in Society (SWS).
“We encourage people not to write devastating reviews of papers,” said SWS member Dr. Amy Stone, Deputy Editor of Gender & Society and Associate Professor of Sociology and Anthropology at Trinity University in San Antonio, Tex. “There was a generosity of spirit in which we presumed that the author was a graduate student who needed mentoring. We provided 13 pages of feedback to coach and mentor the author, but the paper was clearly not up to our standards.”
Gender & Society is a peer-reviewed journal focused on research related to sociology, gender studies and women’s studies. The journal publishes less than 10% of all papers submitted to it. Articles focus on gender and gendered processes in interactions, organizations, societies and global and transnational spaces. The journal follows a rigorous review process that goes through several stages of review. Editors and reviewers noted that writing a long paper under false pretense is unprecedented in their experience, and demonstrates a larger attack on the social sciences with a particular focus on fields related to gender and sexuality.
“This experience demonstrates a larger assault on the truth and our need to be literate in our reading and absorption of information. We tend to trust that the authors are genuine people,” said SWS member Dr. Jo Reger and Editor of Gender & Society and Professor of Sociology, Oakland University in Rochester, Mich. “This shows a lack of respect for the work that we do. People don’t really know what we do. If they did, they should be convinced by it. We are publishing knowledge that is not politicized.”