Marriage and Family


Option 1: Analyzing the Movies

DUE DATE:  Friday April 10th, in my office no later than 5:00pm.  NO EXCUSES!

LENGTH:  The papers should be approximately 3-5 pages in length.  All extra credit 
         papers are required to be computer generated - no hand written, ragged edged 

FORMAT:  There is a list of movies below (it will grow with time!).  For each movie 
         you are to provide a sociological analysis using ideas generated from our textbok
         and class discussions.  

THE MOVIES:  1) Parenthood, 2) Soul Food, and 3) Jungle Fever.

DUE DATE:  Last Day of Class by 5:00pm.  NO EXCUSES.

LENGTH:  Critical Book Reviews should be between 3-5 pages.  They must be
         computer generated (no hand written papers).  Papers should be double
         spaced and in a reasonable font.

FORMAT:  The purpose of a critical book review is to 1) concisely restate the
         main line of argument proposed by the author and 2) intelligently
         critique the authors argument.

         Restate the main idea:  The easiest approach to this is to read
         the book in one or two settings.  When you are don reading, put
         the book down ad try to summarize the MAIN idea in you own words.
         DO NOT Highlight!  It is distracting and is more useful when you
         need to recall minute detail (which you do not need to do in this
         particular context.

         Critique:  There are various strategies to critiquing the argument.
         There may be clear holes in the logic of the discussion or a failure
         to substantiate assertions with empirical evidence.  If you come
         across these things, your task will be easy.  Another approach is 
         think about what theoretical perspective the author(s) are drawing
         from (i.e., functionalism, social conflict, or symbolic interactionsim).
         Think about the assumptions each perspective has about the social
         world and try to critique the argument from another perspective.  For
         example, if you can identify an argument as being functionalist -
         try to look at the same phenomenon from a conflict perspective to 
         formulate a critique.

The critical review should read like an essay - not a set of questions and answers.

                                     THE BOOK LIST 

Anderson, Elijah (1994).  Streetwise.  Chicago:  University of Chicago Press.
Hacker, Andrew J. (1992).  Two Nations:  Black and White; Seperate,  Hostile, Unequal.
     New York:  Ballantine Books.
Jencks, Christopher.  (1995).  The Homeless.  Cambridge, MA:  Harvard University Press.
Massey, Douglas and Nancy Denton (1993).  American Apartheid:  Segregation and the making of
     the underclass.  Cambridge, Mass:  Harvard University Press.
Wilson, William J. 91987).  The Truly Disadvantaged:  The Inner City, the Underclass, and Public Policy.
     Chicago:  University of Chicago Press.

Option 3: Personal Biography

DUE DATE:  The last day of class by 5:00pm.  NO EXCUSES.

LENGTH:  Autobiographis should be between 5-7 pages.  They must be
         computer generated (no hand written papers).  Papers should be double
         spaced and in a reasonable font.

FORMAT:  The purpose of a personal biography is to provide a conscious and 
         contemplative look at one's own experiences from a sociological 
         perspective.  You will want to provide an even balance of recounting the 
         important experiences in your biography that have made you the person 
         that you are today along with an analysis of what social forces existed
         and what role they played in shaping both opportunities and constraints
         in your personal experience.  

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