In keeping with its mission to make the scholarly analysis of human rights accessible to a wide audience, Societies Without Borders: Human Rights and the Social Sciences —a double-blind, peer-reviewed journal – solicits 5000-8000 word manuscripts that contribute to the social scientific understanding of human rights in global context. Manuscripts should be original, theoretically-informed, and methodologically rigorous yet accessible to a broad readership. Scholars, teachers, practitioners, and activists are invited to take an innovative approach to the analysis of human rights.

Interested in writing a book review for Societies Without Borders? Please contact Book Review Editor Tugrul Keskin. Interested in writing a film review for Societies Without Borders? Please contact Film Review Editor LaDawn Haglund.

Submissions from undergraduate students: Societies Without Borders enthusiastically accepts submissions from undergraduate students. Undergraduate submissions should

  • frame the topic in the manuscript as being related to human rights.
  • do something "new." This could include an application of a theoretical model to the interpretation of a particular event or process, develop new theory, OR include the presentation and analysis of data not published elsewhere.
  • otherwise meet the formatting and writing requirements of the journal.
  • The two senior editors plus a managing editor will review manuscripts by undergraduate students. In some situations, the editors will request a review of the manuscript by an outside reviewer.

    If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact the editors.

    Societies Without Borders follows the American Sociological Association’s style guide for publications. Follow the Manuscript Submission guidelines below.


    Manuscripts should meet the format guidelines specified below. Manuscripts not in compliance with the guidelines will be desk rejected.

    All text must be double-spaced and typed in Times New Roman, 12-point font size. Margins should be at least 1 inch on all four sides. You may cite your own work, but do not use wording that identifies you as the author.

    Each submission should include the following:

    • Abstract.
    • Title Page.
    • Blinded Manuscript.


    • All pages must be double spaced (including notes and references).
    • Margins must measure at least 1 inch (i.e., line length must not exceed 6-1/2 inches).
    • Please use 12-point Times New Roman font.

    Sections in a manuscript may include the following: (1) Title page, (2) Abstract, (3) Text, (4) Notes, (5) References, (6) Tables, (7) Figures, and (8) Appendixes.

    1. Title page. Please include the following:

    • Full article title
    • Acknowledgments and credits
    • Each author’s complete name and institutional affiliation(s)
    • Grant numbers and/or funding information
    • Key words (four or five)
    • Corresponding author (name, address, phone/fax, e-mail)

    2. Abstract. The abstract (150 to 200 words) should not include authors’ names or other identifying information.

    3. Blinded Manuscript. The manuscript should not include the title page, authors’ names or affiliations, or any other identifying information. SWB uses anonymous peer reviewers for manuscript evaluation. Delete or rewrite any text that identifies you as the author: when citing your own work, please write “Smith (1992) concluded…,” but do not write “I concluded (Smith 1992)….”

    a) Headings and subheadings. Generally, three heading levels are sufficient to organize text. See recent issues for examples.

    b) Citations in the text should provide the last name of the author(s) and year of publication. Include page numbers for direct quotes or specific passages. Cite only those works needed to provide evidence for your assertions and to refer to important sources on the topic. In the following examples of text citations, ellipses (…) indicate manuscript text:

    • When author’s name is in the text, follow it with the year in parentheses—… Duncan (1959).
    • When author’s name is not in the text, enclose the last name and year in parentheses—… (Gouldner 1963).
    • Pages cited follow the year of publication after a colon—… (Ramirez and Weiss 1979:239–40).
    • Provide last names for joint authors—… (Martin and Bailey 1988).
    • For three authors, list all three last names in the first citation in the text—… (Carr, Smith, and Jones 1962). For all subsequent citations use “et al.”—… (Carr et al. 1962). For works with four or more authors, use “et al.” throughout.
    • For institutional authorship, supply minimal identification from the complete citation—… (U.S. Bureau of the Census 1963:117).
    • List a series of citations in alphabetical order or date order separated by semicolons—… (Burgess 1968; Marwell et al. 1971).
    • Use “forthcoming” to cite sources scheduled for publication. For dissertations and unpublished papers, cite the date. If no date, use “n.d.” in place of the date—… Smith (forthcoming) and Oropesa (n.d.).
    • For machine-readable data files, cite authorship and date—… (Institute for Survey Research 1976).
    • c) Notes should be numbered in the text consecutively using superscript Arabic numerals. When referring to a note later in the text, use a parenthetical note—… (see note 4).

      d) Equations in the text should be typed or printed. Use consecutive Arabic numerals in parentheses at the right margin to identify important equations.

      4. Notes should be typed, double-spaced, in a separate “ENDNOTES” section. Begin each note with the superscript numeral to which it is keyed in the text (e.g., “1 After 1981, there were…”). Notes can (a) explain or amplify text, (b) cite materials of limited availability, or (c) append information presented in a table or figure. Avoid long notes: consider (a) stating in the text that information is available from the author, (b) depositing the information in a national retrieval center and inserting a short footnote or a citation in the text, or (c) adding an appendix. Each note should not exceed 100 words.

      5. References are presented in a separate section headed “REFERENCES.” All references cited in the text must be listed in the reference section, and vice versa. Publication information for each must be complete and correct. List the references in alphabetical order by authors’ last names; include first names and middle initials for all authors when available. List two or more entries by the same author(s) in order of the year of publication. When the cited material is not yet published but has been accepted for publication, use “Forthcoming” in place of the date and give the journal name or publishing house. For dissertations and unpublished papers, cite the date and place the paper was presented and/or where it is available. If no date is available, use “n.d.” in place of the date. If two or more cited works are by the same author(s) within the same year, list them in alphabetical order by title and distinguish them by adding the letters a, b, c, etc., to the year (or to “Forthcoming”). For works with more than one author, only the name of the first author is inverted (e.g., “Jones, Arthur B., Colin D. Smith, and James Petersen”). List all authors; using “et al.” in the reference list is not acceptable. References for data sets should include a persistent identifier, such as a Digital Object Identifier (DOI). Persistent identifiers ensure future access to unique published digital objects, such as a text or data set. Persistent identifiers are assigned to data sets by digital archives, such as institutional repositories and partners in the Data Preservation Alliance for the Social Sciences (Data-PASS). Refer to the ASA Style Guide(4th ed., 2010) for additional examples:


      Bernard, Claude. [1865] 1957. An Introduction to the Study of Experimental Medicine. Translated by H. C. Greene. New York: Dover.

      Mason, Karen O. 1974. Women’s Labor Force Participation and Fertility. Research Triangle Park, NC: National Institutes of Health.

      U.S. Bureau of the Census. 1960. Characteristics of Population. Vol. 1. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.


      Goodman, Leo A. 1947a. “The Analysis of Systems of Qualitative Variables When Some of the Variables Are Unobservable. Part I—A Modified Latent Structure Approach.” American Journal of Sociology 79:1179–1259.

      Goodman, Leo A. 1947b. “Exploratory Latent Structure Analysis Using Both Identifiable and Unidentifiable Models.” Biometrika 61:215–31.

      Szelényi, Szonja and Jacqueline Olvera. Forthcoming. “The Declining Significance of Class: Does Gender Complicate the Story?” Theory and Society.


      Sampson, Robert J. 1992. “Family Management and Child Development: Insights from Social Disorganization Theory.” Pp. 63–93 in Advances in Criminology Theory. Vol. 3, Facts, Frameworks, and Forecasts, edited by J. McCord. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction.


      Charles, Maria. 1990. “Occupational Sex Segregation: A Log-Linear Analysis of Patterns in 25 Industrial Countries.” PhD dissertation, Department of Sociology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA.

      Web sites:

      American Sociological Association. 1997. “Call for Help: Social Science Knowledge on Race, Racism, and Race Relations” (ASA Action Alert, October 15). Washington, DC: American Sociological Association. Retrieved October 15, 1997 (http://www.asanet.org/racecall.htm).

      Kao, Grace and Jennifer Thompson. 2003. “Racial and Ethnic Stratification in Educational Achievement and Attainment.” Annual Review of Sociology 29:417–42. Retrieved October 20, 2003 (http://arjournals.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev.soc.29.010202.100019)

      Data Sets:


      Deschenes, Elizabeth Piper, Susan Turner, and Joan Petersilia. Intensive Community Supervision in Minnesota, 1990–1992: A Dual Experiment in Prison Diversion and Enhanced Supervised Release[Computer file]. ICPSR06849-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2000. doi:10.3886/ICPSR06849.

      6. Tables should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they appear in the text and must include table titles. Tables will appear in the published article in the order in which they are numbered initially. Each table must include a descriptive title and headings for all columns and rows. Gather general notes to tables as “Note:”; use a, b, c, etc., for table footnotes. Use asterisks *, **, and *** to indicate significance at the p < .05, p < .01, and p < .001 levels, respectively, and always specify one-tailed or two-tailed tests. Generally, results at p > .05 (such as p < .10) should not be indicated as significant. Position your tables within the text where you want them to appear.

      7. Figures should be numbered consecutively in the order in which they appear in the text and must include figure captions. Figures will appear in the published article in the order in which they are numbered initially. Preferred programs and formats for figures include the following: Excel, Word, PowerPoint, .wmf, .emf, and .tif (300 dpi). Position your figures within the text where you want them to appear.

      8. Appendixes should be lettered to distinguish them from numbered tables and figures. Include a descriptive title for each appendix (e.g., “Appendix A. Variable Names and Definitions”).


      The author(s) are responsible for securing permission to reproduce all copyrighted figures or materials before they are published by SWB. A copy of the written permission must be included with the manuscript submission.

      The Manuscript Submission Guidelines are adapted with permission from the American Sociological Association’s manuscript submission guidelines. (http://www.e-noah.net/asa/asashoponlineservice/ProductDetails.aspx?productID=ASAOE701S10)