I am a Professor of sociology at Paris Dauphine University (PSL University). I study the material, economic and legal dimensions of family, in particular through the analysis of inheritance and marital breakdown. My research is at the crossroads of several fields: sociology of law and justice, sociology of gender and family, and economic sociology.
My last book, The Gender of Capital. The Family: an Inequality Machine) (in French, La découverte, 2020) co-authored with Sibylle Gollac, approaches the institution of family from a materialistic point of view breaking with the dominant theory of a modern relationship-based family, free of financial stakes. It takes seriously the observation of economists, in the wake of Thomas Piketty, that there is a return to property inequality, based on the legacy of capitalism in the twenty-first century. Exploring family wealth arrangements, the book answers the following questions: Why do women accumulate fewer assets than men? Why do marital separations impoverish women while they do not prevent men from becoming wealthy?
I am also the co-author of a book drawing on a vast research on family courts in France (Collectif Onze, Au tribunal des couples, Paris: Odile Jacob, 2013 ; adapted into a graphic novel, by Baptiste Virot Casterman, 2020) and the author of a book on Cognac winegrowing family businesses (De génération en génération, Paris : Raisons d’Agir 2010).
In 2016-2017, I was a member of the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton. In 2018, I participated to the History Working Group and co-authored a text “The Institute at Crossroads: Gender, Work and Family in a Scholar’s Paradise“