Tara Milbrandt, PhD

Associate Professor, Augustana - Social Sciences


Associate Professor, Augustana - Social Sciences
(780) 679-1172
Augustana Campus
4901-46 Ave
T4V 1S4




Ph.D. York University (Sociology)

MA York University (Sociology) 

BA Augustana University College (Sociology)

Certificate in Building Capacity for Reconciliation, Augustana Faculty, Camrose, AB (September 2016-April 2017)

International Visual Sociology Association, Board Member (June 2018-July 2022) (https://visualsociology.org/?page_id=1211)

Reviews Editor for Elicitations in Imaginations: Journal of Cross-Cultural Image Studies (2011-2021)


Primary Research Areas:

Sociological Theory 

Visual Sociology

Media and Digital Culture

Urban Life and the Public Realm

Recent Publications:

Mibrandt, Tara. 2020. “‘Make Them Famous’: Digital Vigilantism and Virtuous Denunciation after Charlottesville”. In Vigilant Audiences: Understanding Scrutiny, Denunciations, and Shaming in Digital Media Use, edited by Daniel Trottier, Rashid Gabdulhakov and Qian Huang, 215-258, Cambridge: Open Book Publishers (https://books.openbookpublishers.com/10.11647/obp.0200.pdf)

Milbrandt, Tara. 2020 “Season of Dreaded Joys: Adaptation, Enchantment, and Solidarity in a ‘Winter’ City”, for Seasonal Sociology, edited by Tonya Davidson and Ondine Park, 119-138. Toronto: University of Toronto Press (https://utorontopress.com/blog/2021/02/08/excerpt-winter-seasonal-sociology/)

Davidson, Tonya, Milbrandt, Tara, & Ondine Park (equal authorship). 2020. “Introduction to Seasonal Sociology.” In Seasonal Sociology Edited by Tonya Davidson and Ondine Park, 1-16. Toronto: University of Toronto Press (https://utorontopress.com/9781487594084/seasonal-sociology/)

Milbrandt, T. 2017. “Caught on Camera, Posted Online: Mediated Moralities, Visual Politics and the Case of Urban ‘Drought-Shaming’”, Visual Studies, 32(1): 3-23. DOI: 10.1080/1472586X.2016.1246952 

Harper, D. and T. Milbrandt. 2016 (equal authorship). “Seen and Imagined: A Northwestern Crossroads City”, Imaginations: Journal of Cross-Cultural Image Studies, 7(1): 160-175. DOI: 10.17742/ IMAGE.NBW.7-1.13

Datta, R. P. and T. Milbrandt. 2014 (equal authorship). “The Elementary Forms of Religious Life: Discursive Monument, Symbolic Feast”, Introduction to Special Issue on Durkheim's Elementary Forms of Religious Life: Contemporary Engagements, for The Canadian Journal of Sociology, 39(4): 473-522 

Milbrandt, T. 2013. “Signs of the City: Space, Place, and the Urban Street Poster”, in Captured by the City: Perspectives in Urban Culture Studies. Edited by B. Momchedjikova, 49-70. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Press 

Milbrandt, T. 2012. "Visual Irruptions, Mediated Suffering, and the Robert Dziekanski Tragedy: An Inquiry into the Efficacy of the Image", in Ethics and Images of Pain. Edited by A. Gronstad and H. Gustafsson, 74-92. New York: Routledge 

Milbrandt, T. and F. Pearce. 2011 (equal authorship). “Émile Durkheim.” In The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Major Social Theorists, Volume I Classical Social Theorists. Edited by G. Ritzer and J. Stepnisky, 236-282. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell 


Primary Teaching Areas:

Sociological Theory (Classical, Modern, Contemporary)

Visual Sociology 

Mass Communication and Contemporary Society

Social Theory of Community

Specific courses I teach regularly at Augustana: 

IDS 101: Who's Watching You? Surveillance in Everyday Life (new)

AUSOC101: Introduction to Sociology: Principles and Practices

AUSOC 103: Introduction to Sociology: Institutions and Insights 

AUSOC 232 Theoretical Developments in Sociology I

AUSOC 233: Theoretical Developments in Sociology II

AUSOC 262: Mass Communication and Contemporary Society 

AUSOC 263: Social Theory of Community 

AUSOC 372: Visual Sociology 

AUSOC 439: Seminar in Contemporary Sociological Theory 


AUIDS 101 - First Year Seminar

Selected topics that highlight the interdisciplinary nature of the Liberal Arts and Sciences. This seminar-style class is the first course in Augustana's Core. The focus and content of each course are determined by faculty interests, and vary from year to year.

Fall Term 2022

AUSOC 103 - Introducing Sociology: Institutions and Insight

Introduction to sociology focusing on the relation between social institutions and everyday life. Through an examination of institutions like law, family, education, politics, religion, and economy, the course develops an understanding of themes such as changes in family organization, the relation between delinquency and power, and the relation between religion and economy.

Winter Term 2023

AUSOC 232 - Theoretic Developments in Sociology I

Survey of the origin and the development of classical sociological theory, with particular emphasis on Marx, Durkheim, and Weber. Prerequisite: One of AUSOC 101, 103, 105.

Fall Term 2022

AUSOC 262 - Mass Communication and Contemporary Society

What kind of communication is mass communication, and in what ways in particular is this different from other forms of communication? What does it mean to live in an age of mass culture? The construction and character of mass society as one organizational and communicative possibility, using notions of postmodernism and post-industrialism. Prerequisite: AUSOC 101, 103 or 105.

Fall Term 2022

AUSOC 372 - Visual Sociology

An inquiry into visual representation in and of society; this includes the social dimensions that encompass the making, interpretation, and use of visual images, especially photographs, in collective life and within contemporary sociological research. Prerequisites: AUSOC 101, *3 at a senior level in Sociology and 3rd year standing or consent of the instructor.

Winter Term 2023

AUSOC 439 - Seminar in Contemporary Sociological Theory

Issues in contemporary theory. Central concepts and arguments proposed by a variety of theorists are examined. Topics covered vary by instructor. A student confronts primary texts. Prerequisite: *6 at a senior level in Sociology.

Winter Term 2023

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