Social Construction of ethnicity and race model_ Cornell and Hartman, sociology homework help

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Assignment 1: Social Construction Paper (Due Tuesday, February 21, 2017 at 11:59pm)

Watch the film, Gattaca, and use Cornell and Hartman’s social construction of ethnicity and race model to construct an analysis of the society presented in the film. Your paper should answer some (if not all) of the following questions.

  • Does the film present a racial structure?
  • Are there identifiable ethnic and/or racial groups in the film?
  • How salient are racial/ethnic identities in the film, and how might one account for or explain the level of salience that they have achieved?
  • Are social categories based in a system of assignment or self assertion?
  • Does the filmmaker identify sites critical to the construction of ethnic or racial categories and/or identities?
  • Does the film downplay the importance of particular group characteristics in the construction and maintenance of its racial or ethnic categories?
  • Are identities in the film “thin” or “thick”?
  • How are boundaries between groups constituted and maintained? How permeable are the boundaries?
  • Are there identifiable forces that occasion the construction of ethnicity and/or race in the film’s fictitious society?
  • Are there ways in which the social categories presented in the film are different from racial and ethnic groups as described by Cornell and Hartmann?

A copy of Gattaca is available for viewing prior to the due dates of class workshops and the final paper at Sawyer Library. If you want to use a viewing room in the library, you need to make an appointment online to reserve the room. Note that neither the professor nor Sawyer Library can guarantee continual access to the film, so take good notes while you are watching.

Your essay should be between four and six pages in length and should focus mostly on analysis of the applicability of the social construction model to the filmmaker’s social setting. You may describe aspects of the film in support of your analysis, but assume that your reader knows the film. Your grade on this assignment will be based on the clarity of the language and the adequacy of your organization (i.e. the form of your paper) as well as on the strength of your argument, the quality of your analytical work, and the degree to which it demonstrates understanding of and facility with Cornell and Hartmann’s social constructionist model of ethnicity and race (i.e. the content of your paper). More specific information about grading is available in the grading rubric at the end of this assignment. Use footnotes, endnotes, or parenthetical notations to give attribution to and identify the page numbers of direct quotes or ideas paraphrased from the Ethnicity and Race textbook. Papers must be in the Microsoft Word format, double-spaced, and in a readable-sized font. If you write more than six pages, I cannot promise to read past page eight.

Grades on this assignment are based on evaluation of the following criteria:

THESIS 3 points

(Is your thesis statement clearly identifiable? Be sure to underline or highlight it in some other way. Does the thesis summarize your overall argument? Does the thesis answer the assignment question?)

ARGUMENT/EVIDENCE 4 points

(Do you use evidence from both the movie and the textbook in support of the thesis? Does the argument flow logically from one point to the next in support of the thesis and does it clearly link the paper’s ideas to supporting evidence – i.e., explain how the evidence supports the ideas)?

DEMONSTRATED UNDERSTANDING OF CONSTRUCTIONIST PERSPECTIVE 5 points

(Does your paper demonstrate clear understanding of Cornell and Hartmann’s social constructionist perspective on race and ethnicity – i.e., correctly distinguishing between race and ethnicity, demonstrating an understanding of what a construction site is and how it supports certain definitions or attributes of race and/or ethnicity in the society, appropriately discussing the ways in which group boundaries, meanings, and bonds are constituted, indicating clear understanding of the ways group and society attributes influence construction?)

FILM ANALYSIS 5 points

(Does your paper correctly apply constructionist perspective concepts to the case of the society presented in Gattaca?)

PARAGRAPH LEVEL ORGANIZATION 4 points

(Do paragraphs hold together? Do they consist of evidence organized to support or explain a topic or kernel sentence? Has each paragraph been explicitly tied to the paper’s thesis?)

SENTENCE LEVEL GRAMMAR AND PUNCTUATION 4 points

(Spelling errors, typographical errors, punctuation errors, and problems with sentence structure – including run-ons and sentence fragments – are the reasons for deductions in this section. Also, for those of you who don’t integrate quotes into your own sentences, this is where deductions will be taken.)

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