I am an Assistant Professor at Florida State University with a joint appointment in the Department of Sociology and the Program for African American Studies, where I have been a faculty member since 2017. My research interests center on culture, race and racism, gender, intimacy, digital life, and work inequity in academia.  Most of my current published work explores how race and ethnicity, gender, and sexuality shape the ways that people build and negotiate intimate relationships. Through this work, I illustrate how interpersonal relationships structure and reify identities and social inequalities. In particular, this branch of my research focuses on multiracial populations and interracial couplings as people move through life course processes like dating, cohabitation, marriage, and parenthood. In addition to studying multiracial people and their families, I also research and write about sexual violence, social media (specifically online dating platforms), the representation of race, gender, and sexuality in popular culture, and racial and gender inequality in academic spaces.

22_1018_ProPublica_FSU_Shantell Buggs_012
CREDIT: Tara Pixley

The overlapping of these interests is most evident in one of my continuing research projects on dating.  This research examines how self-identified multiracial and multiethnic women navigate race as part of their online dating experiences in several urban centers in Texas; I am expanded this project by interviewing white men in Texas about their interracial dating experiences. My most cited publication from this project — “Dating in the Time of #BlackLivesMatter“, which discusses the ways that multiracial women utilize social movements like Black Lives Matter as a metric of racial progressiveness that both enables them to articulate their own political positions and provides them with a means of vetting potential dating partners — is available in Sociology of Race and Ethnicity. Other publications from this project are available in Journal of Marriage and Family,  Sociological Inquiry , Sociology Compass, and in the 4th Edition of Introducing the New Sexuality Studies.  Occasionally, I make guest appearances on podcasts and write at popular outlets such as NBC News and Bitch Media. (To read my other scholarly or public-facing writings, please check out my publications and media pages).

Aside from my research, I am very involved in service at both the university-level and to several national organizations. I have won several awards for mentorship, teaching, and service from my university and national organizations. Among other responsibilities, I am currently faculty advisor for two undergraduate organizations at Florida State. Outside of Florida State, I am an Associate Editor for the journal, Social Problems; an editorial board member for Journal of Marriage and Family and Social Currents; an elected member of the Committee on Committees for the Society of the Study Social Problems; an elected member of the Publications Committee for the Southern Sociological Society; and most recently, the new Chair-Elect for the Section on Sociology of Sexualities (American Sociological Association).