Students will complete a 5-page paper (5 pages of text not including works cited or title page, double spaced, 12pt., Times New Roman) paper on how sex and/or gender operate in a specific culture or subculture. Any culture is acceptable as long as conducting the research does not pose harm to you or anyone else. You really have a chance to be creative here so go for it! Students in the past have chosen a wide range of topics including gender inequality in the United States, gender and the Catholic Church, LGBT culture, gender and the NFL, gender and the media, gender and video games, coming of age in other cultures vs. US culture, quinceaneras, gender and vampire movies, gender in Japan, intersexuality, transgender, Two-Spirits, Hijras, Fa’afafine, etc. If you need help selecting a topic, just let me know. Emphasis should be placed on utilizing and applying the course theories and perspectives and a minimum of three scholarly sources should be used. Be very careful to cite your work properly. If students have access to the culture, they are welcome to include an ethnographic component to their paper as long as conducting the research does not pose a risk to you or anyone else (see below). Remember, don’t just tell us about the culture, try to analyze what is going on using an anthropological perspective and the course theories that we have discussed. Look for relevant anthropological themes such as- gender and biology, public and private worlds, sex, gender, and stratification, the social construction of gender, sexuality, gender and the body, property, kinship, ritual and religion, the gendered division of labor, politics and cultural change. All papers should be submitted electronically via CANVAS in .doc,.txt or .pdf format.
You are required to utilize a minimum of 3 outside scholarly anthropological sources in the paper, but be sure to cite everything properly using MLA format and include a works cited page. Be sure to place all direct quotes in quotation marks or significant points will be deducted. If you plagiarize, you will receive a zero on this paper.
If you select a culture that you have access to, you have the option to conduct ethnographic fieldwork with the culture as long as the research does not pose a risk to you or anyone else. You may not conduct ethnographic research with drug dealers, drug users, anyone who is breaking the law, pimps, prostitutes, children, the mentally ill, people with eating disorders, the homeless, axe murderers, gangs, addicts, recovering addicts, or anyone else who is going to get you killed or me fired. If you do decide to conduct ethnographic fieldwork, you must get permission from the people you are working with to conduct the research, it must not pose any threat to yourself or others, and the project must be approved by me. Extreme caution must be taken when working with people you don’t know and I encourage you to take a friend along if you choose to conduct interviews or visit strange places. If you are worried about conducting ethnographic research, simply conduct library research on the culture instead. If you do conduct ethnographic research, be sure to write about your fieldwork experiences. Discuss both what you learned in regards to the culture and to the fieldwork process. What were the challenges you faced? Was the fieldwork successful? Why or why not? Please contact me if you have any questions about this assignment.