Sharon D. Wright Austin, Ph.D.


Sharon Wright Austin is Professor of Political Science at the University of Florida. Her research focuses on African-American women’s political behavior, African-American mayoral elections, rural African-American political activism, and African-American political behavior. She is the author of Race, Power, and Political Emergence in Memphis (Garland 2000); The Transformation of Plantation Politics in the Mississippi Delta: Black Politics, Concentrated Poverty, and Social Capital in the Mississippi Delta (State University of New York Press 2006); and The Caribbeanization of Black Politics: Race, Group Consciousness, and Political Participation in America (State University of New York Press 2018). She has also published articles in the National Political Science Review, Political Research Quarterly, Social Science Quarterly, the Journal of Black Studies, and Politics and Policy, as well as several book chapters. She is currently editing a book entitled Political Black Girl Magic: The Elections and Governance of Black Female Mayors (Under Contract, Temple University Press).

Areas of Interest/Research

Dr. Austin has teaching interests in minority politics, American government, public law, and public policy.  She conducts research in the areas of African American politics, gender and politics, Southern politics, and urban politics.

Contact Information

On research leave during the 2019-2020 academic year.

Office: 234 Anderson Hall
Phone: (352) 392-0262
Fax: (352) 392-8127

Mailing address:
Department of Political Science
University of Florida
P.O. Box 117325
Gainesville, FL 32611-7325.