Skip to main content


Dr. David KnottnerusDr. David Knottnerus' headshot


Regents Professor Emeritus

Curriculum Vitae


David Knottnerus Ph.D., has published extensively in the areas of social theory, social psychology, group processes, social inequality and structure, and ritual dynamics. Most of his efforts in recent years have focused on the development of structural ritualization theory and research.  This perspective focuses on the role ritual plays in social life. A growing number of investigations have been and are currently being carried out employing the theory (see Ritual Dynamics, Theory, and Research: Summary & Update link for books, articles, and book chapters utilizing this approach).

Dr. Knottnerus has served as the President of the Mid-South Sociological Association, has served as a member of the Council for the Theory Section, American Sociological Association, has been involved in the Sociological Imagination Group and has served as co-editor (with Bernard Phillips) of the book series "Advancing the Sociological Imagination" published by Paradigm Publishers (Boulder, CO).

His more recent books are Ritual as a Missing Link: Sociology, Structural Ritualization Theory and Research (Paradigm Publishers); coauthored with Jason S. Ulsperger,  Elder Care Catastrophe: Rituals of Abuse in Nursing Homes - and What You Can Do About It (Paradigm Publishers);  coauthored with Monica K. Varner, American Golf and the Development of Civility: Rituals of Etiquette in the World of Golf (LAP Lambert Academic Publishing); co-edited with Bernard Phillips, Bureaucratic Culture and Escalating World Problems: Advancing the Sociological Imagination (Paradigm Publishers); and, co-editing with Sing C. Chew, Structure, Culture, and History: Recent Developments in Social Theory (Rowan & Littlefield).


  • B.A. in Sociology, Beloit College
  • M.A. in Sociology, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale
  • Ph.D. in Sociology, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale

Research Interests

  • Social Psychology
  • Social Theory
  • Ritual
  • Social Structure
  • Inequality
  • Collective Behavior
  • Social Movements
Back To Top