Jack Fong

Academic Degrees

 2006 PhD - Sociology. University of California, Santa Cruz

2004  MA - Sociology. University of California, Santa Cruz

1997 MA - Sociology. San Jose State University

1992 BA - Communications with a minor in English. California State Polytechnic University, Pomona

Selected Publications

Fong, Jack. 2024. “Employing Lyn Lofland’s and Ray Oldenburg’s Urban Sociology to ‘Read’ the Emptying of Los Angeles’ Publics.” Pp. 245-271 in Reconfiguring Global Societies in the Pre-vaccination Phase of the COVID-19 Pandemic, edited by Jack Fong. University of Toronto Press.  (May 2024 Release)

Fong, Jack, ed. 2024. Reconfiguring Global Societies in the Pre-vaccination Phase of the COVID-19 Pandemic. University of Toronto Press. (May 2024 Release)

Fong, Jack. 2023. “The Routinization of Charisma in Thai Nation Construction: A Weberian Reading of  Thai Royalism, Nationalism, and Democracy.” Pp. 576-594 in The Routledge handbook of nationalism in East and Southeast Asia, edited by Zhouxiang Lu. Routledge.

Fong, Jack. 2022. “Dynamics and Themes of Fourth World Advocacies and Activisms. [Review of the book Indigenous Identity, Human Rights, and the Environment in Myanmar, by Jonathan Liljeblad]. Asian Journal of Law and Society, 1-3. doi:10.1017/als.2022.25

Fong, Jack. 2020. “Death Cafes.” World Religions and Spirituality Project. April 14. [Website Publication]

Fong, Jack. 2020. Employing Nietzsche’s Sociological Imagination: How to Understand Totalitarian Democracy. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.

Fong, Jack. 2019. "A Critical Analysis of the Symbiotic Relationship between Sinophobia in Online News and United States' Foreign Policy on China." ISA eSymposium (International Sociological Association) 9(1):1-20.

Fong, Jack. 2019. “A Mourning a Late King through Portraiture: Articulations of the Sacred in the Profane in the Primate City of Bangkok.” Journal of Asian and African Studies 54(2):229-247.

Fong, Jack. 2017. The Death Café: Exploring the Horizons of Mortality. London: Palgrave MacMillan.

Fong, Jack. 2017. “Sentiments and Perspectives of Academics about Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).” Journal of Excellence in College Teaching 28(1):49-76.

Fong, Jack. 2016. “Making Operative Concepts from Murray Schafer’s Soundscapes Typology: A  Qualitative and Comparative Analysis of Noise Pollution in Bangkok, Thailand and Los Angeles, California.” Urban Studies 53(1): 173-192.

Fong, Jack. 2016. “The Retractability of American Identity from Chinese Americans: A Function of Geopolitical Crises.” ISA eSymposium (International Sociological Association) 6(3):1-13.

Fong, Jack. 2014. “The Role of Solitude in Transcending Social Crises: New Possibilities for Existential Sociology” in A Handbook of Solitude: Psychological Perspectives on Social Isolation, Social Withdrawal, and Being Alone, edited by Robert Copland and Julie Bowker (Eds). Hoboken: Wiley-Blackwell.

Fong, Jack. 2012. "Political Vulnerabilities of a Primate City: The May 2010 Red Shirts Uprising in Bangkok, Thailand." Journal of Asian and African Studies 48(3):332-347.

Fong, Jack. 2012: “The Politics of Burmese Indigeneity: Karen Transcommunalism as Revolutionary and        Development Force” in Indigeneity: Collected Essays, edited by John Brown Childs and Guillermo Delgado. Santa Cruz, CA: New Pacific Press.

Fong, Jack. 2011: “Methodological and Positional Considerations of Crisis Field Research: The Karen Struggle against the Military Regimes of Burma.” Pp. 55-74 in Reflections: Research Beyond Borders, edited by Lise-Helene Smith and Anjana Narayan. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.

Fong, Jack. 2009. “Sacred Nationalism: The Thai Monarchy and Primordial Nation Construction,” Journal of Contemporary Asia 39 (4):673-696.

Fong, Jack. 2008. Revolution as Development: the Karen Self Determination Struggle against Ethnocracy (1949 to 2004). Boca Raton, FL: BrownWalker Press.

Fong, Jack. 2008. “American Social ‘Reminders’ of Citizenship after September 11, 2001: Nativisms and the Retractability of American Identity.” Qualitative Sociology Review 4(1):69-91.

Fong, Jack. 2008. “Revising the Ethnodevelopment Model to Address Karen Self-determination in the Context of Ethnocratic and Military-ruled Burma.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 31(2):327-357.

Fong, Jack C., Eric L. Lang, Elizabeth A. McKean, National Organization on Disability (U.S.), and Lou Harris and Associates. 2001. 1994 NOD Survey of Americans with Disabilities. Los Altos, CA: Sociometrics.

Fong, Jack C., Eric L. Lang, Elizabeth A. McKean, National Organization on Disability (U.S.), and Lou Harris and Associates. 2001. 1994 NOD Survey of Public Attitudes Toward People with Disabilities. Los  Altos, CA: Sociometrics.

Fong, Jack C., Eric L. Lang, Elizabeth A. McKean, International Center for the Disabled, and Lou Harris and Associates. 2001. 1986 ICD Survey: Employing Disabled Americans. Los Altos, CA: Sociometrics.

Media and Conferencing Involvement

January 2024  Presented to the Class 53 of the California Agricultural Leadership Program on the topic of solitude; presentation titled: “The Value of Social Connections Regarding Loneliness and Solitude.”

December 2023 Referenced in Vogue France by Irene Coltrinari in article titled “La silent walk est ce qu’il y a de plus efficace et de moins cher pour se sentir bien au quotidien” (The silent walk is the most effective and least expensive way to feel good every day). See:

July 2023 
Interviewed in the Independent by Francesca Specter in article titled “Solitude used to mean sad singledom. Now it’s become a status symbol.” See:

June 2023 Referenced in Transformations Care Network in article titled “Broken Heart? Or Something More…” See:

May 2023 Referenced in My Haven Time in article titled “The most important relationship you will ever have” by Anonymous. See:

March 2023 Referenced in Theos’ “Ashes to Ashes: Beliefs, Trends, and Practices in Dying, Death, and the Afterlife” by Marianne Rozario and Lia Shimada. See:

February 2023 Referenced in the Redwood Bark in article titled “Flying Solo, Peace in Solitude,” by Charlotte Fishburne. See:

December 2022 Interviewed in Atlantic by Faith Hill in article titled “Take Yourself on a Date.” See:

September 2022 Referenced in Christianity in article titled “The Queens’ Passing is a Reminder that Death is Inevitable. But as Christians, We Know It's Not the End,” by Chine McDonald. See:

July 2022 Referenced in Katherine Chestnut: Mindfulness & Meditation in article titled “Relishing in the Freedom of Solitude”:

July 2022 Referenced in the Express Tribune in article titled “Solitude: A Key to Solace,” by Ali Hassan Bangwar. See:

February 2022 Referenced in Rice Media in article titled "This is How it Feels to Be Lonely in Singapore":

February 2022 Referenced in the Quinnipiac Chronicle in article titled “Me, Myself and Solitude,” by David Matos. See:

September 2021 Interviewed in FingerLakes1.Com in article titled “New York is 5th Most Diverse in U.S., but Parts of Upstate Struggle with Diversity.” See:

August 2021 Interviewed in the Boston Globe in article titled “Dying for a Better Life: The Pandemic Year Has Taught Us that Facing the Specter of Our Own Demise is the Best Way to Live,” by Julie Zigoris. See:

July 2021 Referenced in in article titled “What’s Most Important? And Two Other Crucial Questions to Ask Yourself Every Morning,” by Matt Norman. See:

May 2021 Cited in Philippe Campos Pessotti’s Isolated Architecture: Finding Solidarity in Isolation. See:

May 2021 Referenced in Kris Verlé: Online Life Coach in article titled “Solitude – 3 Surprising Ways For Shutting Everyone Up,” by Kris Verlé. See:

February 2021 Referenced in Economia Creativa in article titled “The Virtues of Solitude,” by Justyna Molendowska-Ruiz. See:

February 2021 Cited in The Perspective in article titled “The Crown and the Army: Thailand’s Struggle for Democracy,” by Gian Luca Traverso. See:

February 2021 Interviewed in Vox in article titled “How to Make This Winter Not Totally Suck, According to Psychologists,” by Sigal Samuel. See:

January 2021 Referenced in Original Newsbreak in article titled “The Value of Solitude: Why We Should Learn To Be More Comfortable Being Alone,” by Dayana Sabatin. See:

January 2021 Referenced in Compulsive Outdoors in article titled, “Camping—Pleasure or Pain? The 10 Benefits of Camping.” See:

December 2020 Interviewed in Vox in article titled “How to Be Alone,” by Sigal Samuel. See:

October 2020 Referenced in Advisory Board in article titled “Are You Dreading Winter? These 3 Strategies Can Help, Psychologists Say.” See:

September 2020 Interviewed on Apple Podcast Good is in the Details, hosted by Gwendolyn Dolske and Rudy Salo. Title: “What is Existential Sociology.” See:

August 2020 Cited in Theos’ article titled “Death, Dying and the Afterlife in the UK,” by Wendy Appenteng Daniels. See:

July 2020 Referenced in the Hour in article titled “How Entrepreneurs Can Find Clarity in Uncertain Times,” by Aytekin Tank. See:

July 2020 Interviewed in the Telegraph in article titled “Why Solo Camping is the Perfect Post-Lockdown Treat,” by Jessica Salter. See:

June 2020 Referenced in Light CO2 in article titled “Camping to Connect,” by Gabriel Nagel. See:

June 2020 Referenced by the Workplace Mental Health Institute in article titled “Social Isolation: How the Coronavirus is Impacting Workers Worldwide.” See:

May 2020 Interviewed on CBS SundayMorning for show titled “Adapting to Living in Isolation.” See:

May 2020 Referenced in the Medium in article titled “What They Mean During a Pandemic,” by Tryn Brown. See:

April 2020 Referenced in A Small World in article titled “Life Lessons from the Lockdown,” by Punita Malhotra. See:

April 2020 Referenced in in article titled “Art of Doing Nothing” by Gulfer Ulas. See:

April 2020 Interviewed for Vox on issues related to social distancing related to the pandemic:

April 2020 Invited to contribute essay on history of the Death Café movement by the World Religions and Spirituality Project:

March 2019 Referenced in Kacey Finch in article titled “The Sacredness of Alone Time,” by Kacey Finch. See:

January 2019 Interviewed in Elle Magazine regarding the benefits of solitude:

January 2019 Interviewed in Real Simple Magazine regarding benefits of solitude:

January 2019 Referenced in The Ubiquity (Quartz Hill High School) regarding benefits of solitude:

December 2018 Referenced in Mindful in article titled "Finding Strength in Healthy Doses of Solitude":

July 2018 Referenced in Nemo regarding benefits of solitude:

March 2018 Presented at Pacific Sociological Association (PSA). Title of talk: “Existential Sociology.”

February 2018 Referenced by Kelsey Blackwell in Made In Nature regarding benefits of solitude:

January 2018 Referenced by Orge Castellano in Medium Philosophy regarding benefits of solitude:

October 2017 Referenced in The Student Life (Claremont Colleges) regarding benefits of solitude:

October 2017 Referenced in Yale News by Keera Annamaneni regarding benefits of solitude:

September 2017 Referenced in The Brown Daily Herald (Brown University) regarding benefits of solitude:

August 2017 Referenced in Brian Collinson’s webpage (registered psychotherapist and Jungian Analyst)

August 2017 Referenced in Psychology Today’s “Overcoming the fears of Solitude: 10 Thoughts.”

July 2017 Referenced in Seely Marketing Communications regarding benefits of solitude:

July 2017 Interviewed by the UK’s Big Issue Magazine on solitude and mental health:

April 2017 Referenced in Affinity Magazine regarding benefits of solitude:

March 2017 Interviewed in the Atlantic in article titled “The Virtues of Isolation,” by Brent Crane. See:

November 2016 California Sociological Association (CSA): Presented on Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) in the CSA’s Sociology of Education panel; talk titled “Sentiments and Perspectives of Academics about Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).”

October 2016 California State University Teaching Symposium: Poster presented findings from my research on Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).

September 2016 Interviewed by Fauzeya Rahman for the San Antonio Express-News

August 2016 19th Annual California State University Teaching and Learning Symposium (at San Jose State
University): “Academic Sentiments and Perspectives about Massive Open Online Courses

March 2016 Interviewed about Death Café movement in California Health Report. See link at:

December 2014 Presented at Provost’s Symposium on Faculty Scholarship talk titled: “A Qualitative and Comparative Analysis of Noise Pollution in Bangkok and Los Angeles.”

November 2014 CSA: “Employing Habermas’ Theory of Communicative Action to ‘Read’ the Global Death Café Movement.”

May 2014 Interviewed by Dr. Maria Armoudian on KPFK’s Scholars’ Circle regarding coup in Thailand in 2014. Interview heard at:

April 2014 KTLA Channel 5 news coverage by Lu Parker of my data collection for the Death Café research.

March 2014 Pacific Sociological Association (PSA): (1) “Sentiments and Symbolisms Regarding Massive Open Online Courses”; (2) “Crisis and Solitude in Kurt Wolff’s Surrender and Catch Methodology.”

November 2013 CSA: “The Role of Solitude in Transcending Social Crises: New Possibilities for Existential Sociology.”

April 2013 Presented poster at Cal-Poly’s Stories of Successful Learning titled: “Employing Jurgen Habermas' Theory of Communicative Action to Identify Potential Student Co-Authors.”

January 2013 Indigeneity Conference at UC Santa Cruz to promote book chapter and book Indigeneity: Collected Essays (2012) Santa Cruz: New Pacific Press.

November 2012 Panel moderator and discussant at Ahimsa Conference’s “Sustainable Happiness” (11/02 – 11/04).

April 2012 National Social Science Association (NSSA): Presented Paper: “Solitude and the Existential Self as a Source of Insightful Social Narratives about Society.”

March 2012 PSA: Discussant for Panel on Dennis Loo’s Globalization and the Demolition of Society (2011); presented talk titled “Memories and Reflections of Atavisms: The Potential Ethnocratic Retraction of American Identity from Chinese Americans?”; presented talk titled “The Primacy City as National Capital: Atavistic Political Vulnerabilities of Bangkok, Thailand.”

November 2011 CSA: Presented Paper: “Memories and Reflections of Atavisms: The Potential Ethnocratic Retraction of American Identity from Chinese Americans?”

October 2011 Interviewed for “Report: Asian-Americans Grow Beyond Coastal Hubs.” San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

April 2011 NSSA presentation with Kevin Nunez titled “Disneyland: Still a World of Strangers” (Las Vegas, NV).

March 2011 PSA roundtable presentation with co-author and student Kevin Nunez titled “Disneyland: Still a World of Strangers” (Seattle, WA).

November 2010 Interviewed by the Czech Republic’s Pravda newspaper regarding the release of Burma’s democracy activist, Aung San Suu Kyi.

April 2010 Interviewed on KPFK’s 4 O’clock Thursdays (90.7) with USC’s Daniel Lynch on the decaying political situation in Bangkok, Thailand.

September 2008 Referenced by Burma: Online News and Analysis regarding Saffron Revolution.

September 2008 Presented on two panels at the International Sociological Association in Barcelona Spain. (1) “From Bangkok’s Tripartite Politics to a Dualistic Struggle between Military and Civilian Politics in the post-Rama IX Era”; (2) “Ethnodevelopment: Responding to Multicultural States in Crisis.”

August 2008 Interviewed for the Slovak Republic’s Pravda newspaper (August 8 issue) regarding the 20th anniversary of the democracy movement in Burma.

July 2008 Presented the core themes of my book at Los Angeles’ progressive KPFK channel (90.7). Appeared on 4 O’clock Thursdays show with Maria Armoudian.

May 2008 Interviewed by the Czech Republic’s Pravda newspaper (May 27 issue) regarding the staying power of the current military regime of Burma.

April 2008 PSA: Portland, Oregon. Title: “The Distances of Being: Globalization and the Existentialization of Identities.”

February 2008 Presented to the Class 38 of the California Agricultural Leadership Program on the topic of ethnopolitics and social movements; presentation titled: “New Considerations for ‘Reading’ the Ethnopolitics of Multiculturalism and Diversity.

January 2008 Interviewed by Dr. John Ackerman for Mexico’s weekly, ProcessoNovember 9, 2008 40-41.

September 2007 Interviewed by Tracy Young of Time Warner Cable, Local Edition, on protests in Burma.