Thursday, February 24, 2011

Race Paper Topic Options

You have a five paragraph essay due next week. Here are your topic options:
(I know that we didn't watch the movie Crash in class, but since I've given my other classes the option of writing about it, you are welcome to, as well.)
1. Describe a scene in the movie Crash. Does it bring a particular social problem or issue to mind? Argue whether it does or does not do a good job of highlighting this issue and why.
2. Discuss the evolution of a character from the movie Crash. How do we see them change from the beginning of the film to the end? Is their personal change meant to be symbolic of a change that would/should/could happen in society?
3. Compare the portrayal of race in King of the Hill and The Boondocks. Is the subject of race more obvious in one than the other? Does one of them rely more heavily on racial stereotyping to make points and jokes? What is the effect of this difference on the audience?
4. Discuss racial stereotyping in either King of the Hill or The Boondocks. How/when is it used? Does the show use racial stereotypes in order to challenge them? Or does it use racial stereotypes as a convenient way to make a point?
5. Discuss an experience that you have had that challenged your personal ideas about race or racial stereotypes. Warning: Although this option is expository, it must still have an argument and be presented in a well-constructed five paragraph format. Because this is the most flexible topic, I will also be grading it the most critically.
Paper Format
Your paper must be typed in 12 pt. Times New Roman font. It must be double-spaced, except the header, which should be single-spaced on the left-hand side of the paper and contain: your name, the date, your course and section number, and my name. You should have a title for your paper and it should be centered. Your last name and the page number should be in the upper right hand corner of each page. This is called MLA format and you can google it if you need to. It looks like this:
Writing a Five Paragraph Essay
If you aren't completely comfortable with your understanding of what a five paragraph essay is, you should check out these links:

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

CARTOONS! And race...

Watch these cartoons!

Now, think about the ways that each race is portrayed in each cartoon. Do these cartoons rely on racial stereotypes to create a plotline, humor, or a point? Is this done in a way that is offensive or inoffensive? Why? What do you think about the cartoon's handing of race? Does it confirm ideas/stereotypes you already have of the mannerisms, behavior, or culture of certain races? I am not asking you if you think that either show is an ACCURATE portrayal of anything. I am asking you to look at HOW race is portrayed in each show. If King of the Hill was your only window into "whiteness" and The Boondocks was your only window into "blackness", what would you think of each of these two races? Post a well-written, well-constructed paragraph as a comment below. DUE FRIDAY BY NOON. Your paper assignment will be posted here TOMORROW BY NOON.

Class Today Canceled!

Class today is cancelled. Please check back here later today or tomorrow for an assignment. 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Racism VS Racial Stereotyping

As we discussed in class, it can sometimes be difficult to parse out the differences between racism and racial stereotyping. Here are the Wikipedia definitions of each:
Read the Wikipedia entries, think about what we discussed in class, and as a comment below write one paragraph discussing what you think the difference is between racism and racial stereotyping.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Racial Sterotyping

Watch this video and check out this link:
Stuff White People Like
As a comment, post a link to something you've found on the internet that uses racial stereotyping to make a point, a joke, or sell you something. Make sure to include your name as it is listed on the roll. Also check out at least three other links.
*Be careful about your choices. Blonde jokes, for example, aren't really racial stereotyping. I would say that they are more about gender.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Quiz tomorrow!

Hey y'all,
There will be an in-class quiz tomorrow on the syllabus.

Monday, February 14, 2011


Tracey Duncan                                                                       
2027 Harris Hall
Office hours: T/TR 2-330pm
AttendanceYou are expected to come to class. Students who do not come to class will not be successful. You can miss 3 classes, excused or unexcused, with no grade penalty. Upon your 4th absence, your grade will be dropped one letter. On your 5th absence, it will be dropped another letter, and so forth. Students who miss 7 or more classes will receive an F.
If you miss class, you will need to get the assignments from a classmate. No late work will be accepted.
Class Blog
We will be using a blog for collaborative assignments. This is not optional. The url is based on your course and section number. It will be one of the following:

If you are in my Wednesday class, you will need to check the blog every Tuesday by noon for any assignments or announcements. If you are in my Tuesday/Thursday class, you will need to check the blog every Monday and Wednesday by noon for any announcements. You are responsible for anything announced or assigned on the blog.
Daily QuizzesThere will be a short quiz at the beginning of every class based on readings and previously discussed material. If you are late, you will not be allowed to make up the quiz.
Major Assignments
There will be an essay due the first week of every month, beginning in February.
Grade Breakdown
Daily Quizzes      20%
Participation       10%
HW, etc.               10%
Essay 1                  10%
Essay 2                  15%
Essay 3                  15%
Essay 4                  20%
The standard Southern grading scale will be used.
For each class, you will be expected to have paper, a pen or pencil, The Longman Writer, and a 3X5 index card.