Jonathan B. Imber, Jean Glasscock Professor of Sociology at Wellesley College and editor in chief of the journal Society, said in a statement that he regrets publishing a commentary by Lawrence M. Mead that many scholars say is racist.
Publishing the piece “was a mistake, and one I deeply regret,” Imber said. “My intent was to have this commentary published alongside two critical reviews of his 2019 book, Burdens of Freedom, on which Mead’s commentary is based, that identify flaws in Mead’s arguments. The decision was entirely my responsibility and no other member of the editorial board of Society was consulted or participated in that decision.”
Imber said he’s “recommended the call for retraction,” and that Springer Nature, Society’s publisher, is conducting an investigation to be completed shortly. “I deeply regret the pain that this has caused. I apologize to everyone affected by this,” he said.
Mead, an influential professor of politics and public policy at New York University, denies that his article attributing poverty among Black and Latinx people to their “culture” espouses racist views.