Choose an aspect or aspects of your life to consider in a broader view. Are you a child of divorce? Did you have two working parents or a stay-at-home parent? Are you of the first generation that grew up with computers? Is your household liberal or conservative? Are you employed or unemployed? Have you ever been the victim of a crime or committed a crime? How do your experiences compare with those of others in similar or contrasting circumstances?
Analyze how your culture, race, religion, gender, class, and the like have impacted events in your life and how you might be a part of a larger sociological movement. For example, how have immigration issues affected you? Are you are a child of Norwegian immigrants living in the Midwest or born of Mexican immigrants in the Southwest? Perhaps you are an undocumented worker, or one or both of your parents are. Place yourself and your experiences within the greater historical perspective.
Determine the relevance of your experiences to the time in which you live and vice versa. If you are unemployed, consider whether your unemployment is part of the larger problem of unemployment during an economic downturn. If you grew up in the age of computers, discuss how your parents dealt with the issue of children on the Internet and whether you will raise your children similarly or not.
Use sociological terminology while writing your autobiography. Using sociological language helped California State University sociology professor Alem Kebede's students distinguish their sociological autobiographies from "plain" autobiographies. Student responses to Kebede's project revealed another positive aspect of using sociological language: "unintended therapeutic consequences." Kebede found that using the language of sociology in a sociological autobiography "serves both as a medium of communication and an intellectual instrument of looking at the social world."
Come to an understanding of how the sociological...
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