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Amir Mostaghim - University of Ontario Institute of Technology. Oshawa, ON, CA

Amir Mostaghim Amir Mostaghim

Lecturer, Faculty of Social Science and Humanities | University of Ontario Institute of Technology

Oshawa, ON, CANADA

Breaking down gender and ethnic stereotypes in leisure and consumption identity


Many physical, mental, social and economic factors contribute to identity in today’s society. Leisure and consumption are two of the lesser understood factors, yet they speak volumes about individual identity. Amir Mostaghim, a Lecturer in the Faculty of Social Science and Humanities aims to shed light on the gender and ethnic stereotypes around leisure and consumption. His latest research explores gender and ethnic dimensions of marijuana use in Canada.

Mostaghim joined UOIT in 2015 and teaches undergraduate courses in areas of policy development, policing, and perspectives in criminal justice. He aims to inspire his students to push the boundaries of social justice policy in Canada and around the world in order to improve the lives of marginalized populations.

Previously, he was a sessional instructor at Wilfred Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario as well as University of Guelph in Guelph, Ontario where he is currently finishing up his Doctorate in Sociology and Criminology. He also earned his Master of Arts in Criminology and Criminal Justice Policy here. Intrigued by social science and human interaction, Mostaghim completed his Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Sociology and Psychology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.

As an immigrant child in Canada, he grew up interested in the role of ethnicity, particularly around leisure. Both leisure and consumption play a key role in establishing an individual’s identity, yet little research has been done to examine this cause and effect. Mostaghim’s research aims to understand how the ways in which people enjoy leisure time helps establish their identities.

A fervent social justice advocate, Mostaghim has served as a human rights observer with Amnesty International for more than a decade, and most recently led the sponsorship of 12 Syrian refugees into Canada.

Industry Expertise (2)



Areas of Expertise (7)




Identity Development

Post-Modern Theory


Youth Subculture

Education (2)

University of Guelph: MA, Criminology and Criminal Justice Policy 2010

McMaster University: BA (Honours), Sociology and Psychology 2006

Affiliations (1)

  • Amnesty International

Languages (3)

  • English
  • French
  • Farsi

Event Appearances (4)

Exploring the Continuum of Tactical Engagement: Active Interviews in a Variety of Studies

27th Annual Qualitative and Ethnographic Research Conference  University of Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada


It’s Only the Coconuts Who Smoke Weed: Role of Ethnic Identity Formation in Decision to Use Marijuana

26th Annual Qualitative and Ethnographic Research Conference  University of Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada


My Ethnicity, My Gender, and My Bong: The Role of Marijuana in Identity Construction Amongst University Students

Critical Perspectives: Criminology and Social Justice, the University of Ottawa.  Ottawa, Ontario


Identity Formation, Marijuana and 'The Self': A Study of Cannabis Normalization Among University Students

Qualitative Analysis Conference Laurier-Brantford University  Brantford, Ontario


Research Grants (1)

Attitudes Towards Marijuana: A Three Campus Study of Normalization Among University Students

SSHRC Standard Research Grant $103500


This five-year research project examines cultural and gender perceptions of marijuana use in Canada; and aims to understand the role of leisure and consumption in contributing to an individual’s identity.

Courses (5)

Introduction to Sociology

SSCI 1100U, 1st Year Undergraduate Course

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Data Analysis

SSCI2910U, 2nd Year Undergraduate Course

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SSCI 3050, 3rd Year Undergraduate Course

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Advance Level Policy Development

SSCI 4010U, 4th Year Undergraduate Course

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International Perspective in Criminal Justice

SSCI 4075U, 4th Year Undergraduate Course

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Articles (3)

A Nuanced View of Normalization: Attitudes of Cannabis Non-Users in a Study of Undergraduate Students at Three Canadian Universities Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy


This research aims to critically investigate the extent of normalisation of the use of cannabis by undergraduate students. To examine the extent of peer accommodation, this paper focuses on attitudes of students who abstain. It sheds light on social meanings of the practice by exploring non-users’ reasons for abstaining in addition to their attitudes, perceptions and experiences of use among their peers.

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Book Chapter: Crimes of Mortality, Understanding Crime in Canada: An Introduction to Criminology Toronto: Emond Montgomery Publications


Understanding Crime in Canada: An Introduction to Criminology provides an overview of the foundations of criminology, and is intended for an introductory-level university and college audience. In addition to surveying the key theoretical approaches, it also examines important aspects in the study of criminology, including the role of the media; key points of criminal law; ways of measuring crime; and a thorough survey of the various types of crime.

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Identity Formation, Marijuana and "The Self": A Study of Cannabis Normalization Among University Students Frontiers in Psychiatry


Over the past half-century, as use of marijuana has become more widespread in Canadian society, there are indications of a normalizing process in societal reactions and experiences of use. Among other research avenues, these trends suggest a need for further exploration of young people's understandings of how they make the choice to use or not and how decisions relate to presentation of the self. This study draws on interviews with 30 undergraduates recruited from a larger online survey of respondents at the University of Guelph, ON, Canada.

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