Julie C. Keller

  • Associate Professor of Sociology & Director, Social Science Institute for Research, Education, and Policy (SSIREP)
  • Chafee Hall, Rm 516
  • Phone: 401.874.2309
  • Email: jckeller@uri.edu


Julie C. Keller is an associate professor of sociology at the University of Rhode Island. She earned her doctorate in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2013 and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in environmental sciences from the University of California, Berkeley. Before joining the faculty at URI, Keller was a visiting assistant professor and Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at Oberlin College in Ohio.

Keller’s research and teaching interests include transnational migration from Latin America, rural studies, new immigrant destinations, gender and sexuality. A major line of research examines the working conditions of dairy workers in the U.S. Her new book, Milking in the Shadows: Migrants and Mobility in America’s Dairyland, is now available at Rutgers University Press. Listen to Dr. Keller discussing her book on Wisconsin Public Radio.


  • Ph.D. in Sociology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2013
  • M.S. in Rural Sociology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2008
  • B.A. in Environmental Sciences, University of California-Berkeley, 2003

Selected Publications


  • Keller, Julie C. 2019. Milking in the Shadows: Migrants and Mobility in America’s Dairyland. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press
  • Keller, Julie C., Margaret Gray, and Jill Lindsey Harrison. 2017. “Milking Workers, Breaking Bodies: Health Inequality in the Dairy Industry.” New Labor Forum 26(1):36-44.
  • Keller, Julie C., Sarah E. Lloyd and Michael M. Bell. 2015. “Creating and Consuming the Heartland: Symbolic Boundaries in Representations of Femininity and Rurality in U.S. Magazines.” Journal of Rural Studies 42:133-143.
  • Keller, Julie C. 2015. Review of Continuing La Causa: Organizing Labor in California’s Strawberry Fields by Gilbert Felipe Mireles. Rural Sociology 80(1):142-144.
  • Keller, Julie C. 2014. “Rural Queer Theory,” in Feminisms and Ruralities, pp.155-166, edited by Barbara Pini, Berit Brandth, and Jo Little, Lexington Books.
  • Keller, Julie C. 2014. “‘I Wanna Have My Own Damn Dairy Farm!’: Women Farmers, Legibility, and Femininities in Rural Wisconsin, U.S.” Journal of Rural Social Sciences 29(1):75-102
  • Keller, Julie C. and Michael M. Bell. 2014. “Rolling in the Hay: The Rural as Sexual Space” in Rural America in a Globalizing World: Problems and Prospects for the 2010s, pp.506-522, edited by Conner Bailey, Leif Jensen, and Elizabeth Ransom, West Virginia University Press.