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College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences

Faculty and Staff Profile

Matthew Costello

Assistant Professor

Office: 130F Brackett Hall

Phone: 864-656-2026


Educational Background

Ph.D. Sociology
Ohio State University 2012

MA Sociology
Ohio State University 2007

BA Sociology
University of Cincinnati 2005

Courses Taught

Juvenile Delinquency
Introduction to Sociology
Sociological Theory
Collective Behavior and Social Movements
Sociology of Deviance


Matthew Costello is a sociologist whose research focuses on online crime and deviance and political extremism. He received his doctorate in sociology from Ohio State University. Prior to arriving at Clemson, Dr. Costello worked as an Assistant Professor at Arkansas State University. His current research explores online extremism in domestic and cross-national settings. Specifically, it explores factors related to exposure to, targeting by, and production of online extremist material. Dr. Costello’s research has been published in respected journals in the fields of sociology and criminology.

Research Interests

Online Crime and Deviance, Political Extremism and Violence, Criminal Justice, Criminological and Sociological Theory, Social Movements/Collective Action, Political Economy

Research Publications

Peer Reviewed Journal Articles
Costello, Matthew, Ashley Reichelmann, and James Hawdon. 2022. “The Factors that
Predict Adolescent Cyber-Hate Among the iGen.” Sociological Spectrum

Celuch, Magdalena, Atte Oksanen, Pekka Räsänen, Matthew Costello, Catherine Blaya, Izabela Zych, Vicente J. Llorent, Ashley Reichelmann, and James Hawdon. 2022. "Factors Associated with Online Hate Acceptance: A Cross-National Six-Country Study among Young Adults." International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

Hawdon, James, Matthew Costello, Colin Bernatzky, and Salvatore Restifo. 2022. The Enthymemes of Supporting President Trump: Explaining the Association between Structural Location, Supporting the President, and Agreeing with Online Extremism.” Social Science Computer Review. 40(1): 24-41.

Costello, Matthew, Feng Luo, Hongxin Hu, Long Cheng, Song Liao, Ebuka
Okpala, Nishant Vishwamitra & Mingqu Li. 2021. “COVID-19: A Pandemic of Anti-Asian Cyberhate” Journal of Hate Studies.

Reichelmann, Ashley & Matthew Costello. 2021. “When Patriot Becomes Hate-triot: The Effects of American Identity on the Production of Cyberhate” American Journal of Criminal Justice

Costello, Matthew, Salvatore J. Restifo, and James Hawdon. 2021. "Viewing anti-immigrant hate online: An application of routine activity and Social Structure-Social Learning Theory." Computers in Human Behavior: 106927.

Bernatzky, Colin, Matthew Costello, and James Hawdon. 2021. “Who Produces Online Hate?: An Examination of the Effects of Self-Control, Social Structure, & Social Learning” American Journal of Criminal Justice. p 1-20.

Wachs, Sebastian, Matthew Costello, Michelle F. Wright, Katerina Flora, et al.2021. “DNT
LET ‘EM H8 U! Applying the Routine Activity Framework to Understand Cyberhate
Victimization Among Adolescents Across Eight Countries.” Computers and Education. 160,

Reichelmann Ashley, James Hawdon, Matthew Costello, John Ryan, Catherine Blaya, Vicente
Blava, Atte Oksanen, Pekka Rasanen, Izzabela Zych. 2020. “Hate Knows No Boundaries:
Content and Exposure to Online Hate in Six Nations. Deviant Behavior. 1-12

Costello, Matthew, Rebecca Barrett-Fox, Colin Bernatzky, James Hawdon and Kelly Mendes. 2020. “Predictors of Viewing Online Extremism among America’s Youth.” Youth and Society. 52(5): 710-727.

Hawdon, James, Matthew Costello, Rebecca Barrett-Fox, and Colin Bernatzky. 2019.
“Perpetuation of Online Hate: A Criminological Analysis of Factors Associated with
Participating in an Online Attack.” The Journal of Hate Studies. 15(1).

Costello, Matthew, James Hawdon, Colin Bernatzky, and Kelly Mendes. 2019. “Social Group
Identity and Perceptions of Online Hate.” Sociological Inquiry. 89(3) 427-452.

Hawdon, James, Colin Bernatzky, and Matthew Costello. 2019. “Cyber-Routines,
Political Attitudes, and Exposure to Violence-Advocating Online Extremism.” Social Forces. 98(1): 329-354.

Costello, Matthew, Joseph Rukus, and James Hawdon. 2019. “We Don't Like Your Type
Around Here: Regional and Residential Differences in Exposure to Online Hate Material
Targeting Sexuality” Deviant Behavior: 40(3) 385-401.

Costello, Matthew. 2018. “Oil and Gas Rents and Civilian Violence in the Middle East and North Africa, 1990 – 2004: A Resource Curse, or Rentier Peace?” Social Sciences (Special Issue: The Politics of Peace and Conflict). v7(3), 39.

Costello, Matthew and James Hawdon. 2018. “Who are the online extremists among us?
Sociodemographic characteristics, social networking, and online experiences of those who
produce online hate materials.” Violence and Gender. v5(1).

Costello, Matthew. 2017. “Oil Ownership and Domestic Terrorism.”Research in Social
Movements, Conflict, and Change.v41, 107-136.

Hawdon, James, Matthew Costello, Thomas Ratliff, Lori Hall and Jessica Middleton. 2017.
“Conflict Management Styles and Cybervictimization: Extending Routine Activity Theory.”
Sociological Spectrum. v1: 1-7.

Costello, Matthew, James Hawdon and Amanda Cross. “Virtually Standing Up or Standing By?
Correlates of Enacting Social Control Online.”The International Journal of Criminology and
Sociology. v 6, 16-28.

Costello, Matthew, James Hawdon, and Thomas Ratliff. 2017. “Confronting Online Extremism:
The Effect of Self-Help, Collective Efficacy, and Guardianship on Being a Target for Hate
Speech.” Social Science Computer Review. v35(5), 587-605.

Costello, Matthew, James Hawdon, Thomas Ratliff, and Tyler Grantham.2016. “Who Views
Online Extremism? Individual Attributes Leading to Exposure.” Computers in Human Behavior.
v63, 311–320.

Costello, Matthew. 2016. “Rentierism and Political Violence.” Sociology Compass, v10, 208

Costello, Matthew, Craig Jenkins, and Hassan Aly. 2015. “Bread, Justice, or Opportunity? The
Determinants of the Arab Awakening Protests.” World Development, v67, 90-100.

Jenkins, Craig J., Katherine Meyer, Matthew Costello, and Hassan Aly. 2011 “International
Rentierism in the Middle East, 1971-2008.” International Areas Study Review, v14, 3-31.

Peer Reviewed Book Chapters
Hawdon, James, Ashley Reichelmann, & Matthew Costello. 2022. “Riding the Cyberwaves: The Ebbs and Flows of Internet Cyberhate” Palgrave Handbook of Global Social Change

Hawdon, James and Matthew Costello. 2022. “Confronting Online Extremism: Strategies, Promises, and Pitfalls” North American Rightwing Extremism.

Hawdon, James and Matthew Costello. 2020. “Learning to Hate: Explaining Participation in Online Extremism.” Radicalization and Counter-Radicalization. Ed. Derek Silva and Matthew Deflem. v. 25.

Costello, Matthew and James Hawdon. 2019. “Hate Speech in Online Spaces” in The Palgrave Handbook of International Cybercrime and Cyberdeviance. Eds. Thomas J. Holt and Adam M. Bossler.

Other Publications
Costello, Matthew (numerous encyclopedia entries). 2022. Marijuana in America: Cultural,
Political, and Medical Controversies.

Hawdon, James and Matthew Costello. 2021. “Hate Movements.” Encyclopedia of Social and
Political Movements 2e.

Dorris, Wyatt, Ruijia Hu, Nishant Vishwamitra, Feng Luo, and Matthew Costello. 2020.
“Towards Automatic Detection and Explanation of Hate Speech and Offensive Language.”
IWSPA 2020 Workshop Paper.

Vishwamitra, Nishant, Ruijia Roger Hu, Feng Luo, Long Cheng, Matthew Costello, and Yin
Yang. 2020. "On analyzing covid-19-related hate speech using bert attention." In 2020 19th
IEEE International Conference on Machine Learning and Applications (ICMLA), pp. 669-676.

Hu, Ruijia, Wyatt Dorris, Nishant Vishwamitra, Feng Luo, and Matthew Costello. 2020. "On
the Impact of Word Representation in Hate Speech and Offensive Language Detection and Explanation." In Proceedings of the Tenth ACM Conference on Data and Application Security and Privacy, pp. 171-173.

Edited Volume
Hawdon, James, Bryan Miller, and Matthew Costello (Editors). 2022. “Marijuana in
America: Cultural, Political, and Medical Controversies.” Publisher: ABC-CLIO, LLC.

College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences
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