Soc 3: Discovering Your Own Racial/Ethnic Experience

Soc 3: Discovering Your Own Racial/Ethnic Experience
Due Date: 12/13/10
Over the course of the semester you have completed a series of short writing assignments, researching the
implications of your own identity, your racial/ethnic history, and how your social experiences are shaped by
race/ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality. For your final paper assignment you are going to bring all of these
papers together and to write a “final paper.” Essentially you will be consolidating these papers together into one
longer paper to provide an overall picture of your own racial/ethnic experience. You will also be using class
readings to reflect on the intersection between your own experience and opportunities and the racial/ethnic
issues in the larger society. Therefore, you much use at least 6 class readings and 1 class video to “couch” your
analysis. Must be turned on this date, in class, at the very beginning of class. No late papers will be accepted
and no papers accepted over email.
Your essay should be organized according to the following format. Be sure to make all the sections “flow”
together as one paper with transitions between each section.
1. Introduction (1-2 pages): In your introduction you want to introduce yourself and provide a main
argument (or thesis statement) about how you can understand your own racial/ethnic experience. To
present this main argument answer the following:
a. We are each individuals, but we live in a world shaped by the intersections of race/ethnicity,
class, and gender. What can you tell me about your individual experience (history/heritage;
identity; and social location within the opportunity structure) in a society structured on
2. Body of the Paper: Use the papers you already wrote to provide the body of the document, but be sure
to organize these sections to answer the questions under each section heading.
a. History and Heritage – Paper #1 (2-3 pages)
i. What is your racial/ethnic background?
ii. How do you think your family’s experiences and opportunities have shaped who you are
b. Social Location and the Personal Experience of Race/Ethnicity – Paper #2 (2-3 pages)
i. What do you find most significant and important about your race/ethnicity, class position,
gender, and identity?
ii. How did you learn your racial/ethnic identity and you social location in society?
iii. In what ways are you privileged in society? And, in what ways are you under-privileged?
c. Institutional Racism and Your Opportunities – Paper #3 (2-3 pages)
i. How do you think your position in the opportunity structure has affected your life
chances, life experiences, and life choices?
3. Conclusion (2 pages): In your conclusion you need to answer the following questions:
a. How is your own racial/ethnic experience similar or different to what you have learned in this
class about race/ethnicity/gender/class?
b. What have you learned about yourself from this writing project?
Paper Format:
 Typed, 12 pt font, 1-inch margins, double spaced;
 Must be stapled and name on all pages;
 At 6 course readings and at least 1 video must be properly cited in-text your paper.
Grading (50 points): Evaluation of the paper will be based on the degree of thought and care that went into
researching and writing the paper. I am looking for evidence that you have carefully attended to and thought
about the assignment and critically evaluated the relevant issues. The paper should be carefully written and
proofread for grammatical and spelling mistakes.