Kathleen C. Charmaz is a Professor of Sociology and the coordinator of the faculty writing program at Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park, California. She completed her dissertation at the University of California, San Francisco. She graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in occupational therapy from the University of California, San Francisco in 1973. After working in physical rehabilitation for many years she did a master’s degree to qualify her to teach occupational therapy.
As a young child she suffered from constant respiratory infections and hemorrhaging after she had had a tonsillectomy. This is a reason for why she pursued an interest in health professions.
Her areas of teaching range in social psychology, heath and illness, death and dying, qualitative methods, grounded theory, the study of academic writing and many others. Professor Charmaz has given many speeches and professional workshops in different states and Countries, currently she is in Japan giving a major address, meeting with scholars, and teaching doctoral students.
She has written or co-edited five books and has published many articles and chapters on; the experience of chronic illness, the social psychology of suffering, writing for publication, grounded theory and qualitative research. She is one of five co-authors of her most recent book Developing Grounded Theory: The Second Generation (2007).
She has been the President of the Pacific Sociological Association, Vice-President of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction, Vice-President of Alpha Kappa Delta, the international honorary for sociology, editor of Symbolic Interaction between 1999-2003 and is Chair of the Medical Sociology Section of the American Sociological Association.