Beyond 'heightism' and 'height premium': An anthropology and sociology of human stature. By: Lasco, Gideon. 2024. Sociology Compass. Vol. 18 Issue 2, p1-18.

This review article examines the meanings and materialities of human stature, from serving as a marker of human difference to shaping the socio‐spatial experiences of individuals. I introduce existing perspectives on height from various disciplines, including biomedical discourses on the factors (e.g. nutrition, genetics) that determine height, economic discourses on how the average heights of populations have changed over time, sociobiological and psychological discourses that assume a pre‐cultural, evolutionary “height premium”, and popular discourses on heightism and height discrimination. Drawing from a diverse range of scholarship since SaulFeldman called for a “sociology of stature” in the 1970s, I then present ways in which height and height differences have figured in various domains of human experience, from employment and education to sports and social relationships. Finally, I survey people’s attempts to become taller or shorter, and the implicit values that inform such height‐making practices. What these figurations and practices show, I argue, is that height intersects with notions of race, class, gender, and beauty – but is irreducible to any of them, and is thus best viewed as a distinct, embodied form of distinction, difference, and inequality. I conclude by proposing a research agenda for future work.