Goal to Become a Sociologist

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Goal: Write a 1,000 word essay that advances an argument about your path to attending a university, and that shows how your presence here demonstrates a relationship between interactional forces, on one hand, and institutional or structural forces on the other. Format: Doubled-spaced with citations (parenthetical or footnotes) and a reference list. The overall course goal is to develop your sociological imagination. The final paper demands that you view and describe your own life and your place in the world through a sociological lens, relating it to interactional, institutional, and structural social forces. This assignment connects personal troubles (or triumphs) to public issues. The midterm exam focused your analysis on connecting your personal history to larger social forces and patterns of social life. This final assignment asks you to include sociological insights and theories developed over the entire semester. Your paper will advance an arguable thesis statement in the introduction, and will provide a review of at least one interactional-level reading, and one institutional- or structural-level reading. You will present and analyze the data (the information about your own life) clearly and succinctly, using at least two concepts from the readings and lectures. You will also summarize what you have argued in a conclusion. Imagine you are a sociologist looking at your life from the outside—how would you theorize its course? Review the articles we have read in this class as models (e.g., Quan, Taylor & Rupp, Montemurro). Note that some readings are in more than one category because their analyses focus on multiple levels. Interactional-level readings

Quan, “The girl who wouldn’t sing”
Goffman, “On face-work”
Taylor & Rupp, “Learning from drag queens”
Rupp & Taylor, “Straight girls kissing”
Montemurro, “Deviance and liminality”
King, “Multiraciality reigns supreme?”
Lareau, “Concerted cultivation and the accomplishment of natural...
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