John (Jay) Arena is an Associate Professor of Sociology at the City University of New York’s College of Staten Island. His teaching and research interests include post-civil right Black politics, class analysis, Luxemburgism, and social movements, particularly in the context of urban struggles over neoliberal capitalist restructuring. His most recent book, Expelling Public Schools: How Antiracist Politics Enables Privatization in Newark (University of Minnesota Press, 2023) looks at popular struggles against privatization, elite containment strategies, and the lessons the Newark case provides for building an anti-capitalist alternative. Arena’s book, Driven From New Orleans: How Nonprofits Betray Public Housing and Promote Privatization, received the best book awards from the American Sociological Association’s Racial and Ethnic Minorities and Marxist sections, respectively. His writings have appeared in American Behavioral Scientist, Science & Society, Journal of Labor & Society, Nonsite, Jacobin, Black Agenda Report and Counterpunch. He is a long-time community and labor activist, including in rank-and-file reform efforts within the Professional Staff Congress, American Federation of Teachers, Local 2324 which represents CUNY education workers.
PhD, Tulane University
MA, Tulane University
BA, Le Moyne College
Expelling Public Schools: How Antiracist Politics Enables Privatization in Newark, University of Minnesota Press, 2023.
Driven From New Orleans: How Nonprofits Betray Public Housing and Promote Privatization, University of Minnesota Press, 2012. Winner of the 2013 American Sociological Association Race and Ethnicity Section Oliver Cromwell Cox Book Award (for Anti-Racist scholarship) and winner of the 2014 American Sociological Association Marxist Sociology Section Paul Sweezy Outstanding Book Award.
(Spanish translation of 2019 New Politics published in an edited book) “Solo una política de clase puede salvarnos de la violencia policial y el fascismo. Lecciones de Rosa Luxemburg y Cedric Johnson,” pp. 125-136, in Las panteras negras ya no pueden salvarnos: Sobre excepcionalismo negro, violencia policial y políticas de la identidad: con objeciones de Kim Moody, Jay Arena, Mia White y Touré Reed, Cedric Johnson ed., Libros Corrientes, 2020.