My BlackboardCoursesTab 2 of 6 (active tab)CommunityContent CollectionLibrary/Learning CommonsTips & TricksSummer2015-WST2010-Int Women'S Studies-421376 Course Content Module 10: Writing & Research in Women’s StudiesSummer2015-WST2010-Int Women'S Studies-421376AnnouncementsCourse ContentSyllabusCalendar of ActivitiesDiscussionsTools & ResourcesModule 10: Writing & Research in Women’s Studies Module Introduction
This module takes a pause from following the chapters of the textbook in order to focus on best practices for writing and research in Women’s Studies. The primary written project for the course is a research essay in the mode of cultural analysis. Cultural analysis is usually interdisciplinary in nature, making it well suited for application in Women’s Studies. A type of qualitative research, cultural analysis focuses on historical material, such as visual artifacts or written texts, or cultural phenomenon with the purpose of articulating a clear understanding of the materials and/or phenomena in context and offering an informed interpretation of the materials’ or phenomena’s significance.
Students are advised to read through the entire learning object embedded in this module for it addresses each of the major stages of completing a critical analysis essay, including topic selection, thesis development, writing and research. Students also are advised to communicate with the professor regarding topic selection or approaches to research. In addition to working to demonstrate historical knowledge and inter-cultural competency, students should remember that college essays also must demonstrate intermediate to advanced writing and critical thinking skills, as well as basic of documentation of research.Course Learning Outcomes
This module addresses the following course outcomes articulated in the College Course Outline:Students will be able to articulate an understanding of the individual in society.Students will have knowledge of U.S. women’s historyModule Objectives
Upon completion of this module, the student will be able to:Analyze specific historical documents and artifacts for expressions of (and by) women.Interpret cultural artifacts with attention to the representation of women and gender.Describe the intersection of various aspects of culture (such as ethnicity, class, religion, geographic region, etc.) with gender.Appraise women’s contributions to the development of American culture.ReadingsLecture ContentLecture ContentSelect the image below to access this module's Learning Object.
Cultural Analysis Essay
Purpose:The purpose of a cultural analysis essay (based on historical artifacts) is to demonstrate in writing your ability to think critically about specific historical evidence (primary sources), usually written artifacts such as literature, letters and other first person accounts, and legal/political documents or visual artifacts such as art, advertisements and other media.
Your writing should demonstrate your ability to understand and appreciate the selected historical artifacts in contextand to apply major concepts and interpretive approaches from Women’s Studies to those artifacts. The best essays will address the social and cultural dynamics that influenced or shaped the creation of the specific artifact(s).
A cultural analysis essay is not a book report; your writing should aim to provide analytical and interpretive thought that is not immediately evident in the historical artifacts themselves
Instructions: Select one to three specific historical artifacts from our course textbook* and develop a focused cultural analysis based on oneof the following five topics:How does the intersection of gender and economic or social class inform the construction or creation of visual or written artifacts from a specific historical period?How does the intersection of gender and ethnicity, “race,” or national origin inform the construction or creation of visual or written artifacts from a specific historical period?How are attitudes and approaches to gender expressed differently across the generations? (Please select artifacts that are at least 50 years apart.)How are attitudes and approaches to gender represented differently in diverse geographic regions within the United States (e.g. North-South; East Coast-Western territories)?How have specific male historical figures contributed to and/or productively informed women’s rights movements in the United States and what does this reveal about the construction of gender in our culture?
*The blue framed pages at the end of each chapter offer the best starting point for identifying specific historical artifacts, although students may also select material from within the chapters so long as that material is a specific artifact and not general textbook passages. Specific artifacts most likely are: paintings, photographs, advertisements, letters, first person accounts, newspaper columns, poems, legal briefs, or political documents.
Expectations: Cultural Analysis Essays should be composed to college-level standards of grammar and organization; your essay should be well developed with supporting evidence from both the artifact(s) at the focus of your analysis and relevant scholarly sources.
Strong written analysis includes the following:A specific introduction that provides relevant, contextual background of the focus artifact or artifacts,A clear statement of the overall interpretation to be offered in the essay, such as through a purpose statement or thesis,A consistent interpretive focus on the features of the primary sources, the artifacts themselves: What do they express? What does this expression mean? How, specifically, is this expression conveyed? Why might the original author/creator have chosen to produce this specific artifact in this way (and for whom)?An awareness of both the intentional, obvious features of the artifacts and the unconscious, unintentional or culturally influenced aspects of the artifacts, such a biases or other historically-informed values and beliefs,A concluding analysis that suggests the larger significance of the artifact(s) for its originating context as well as our own time, andPrecisely documented quotations or evidence from the primary sources (the artifacts) as well as secondary sources (research) via MLA or APA format; at least two (but no more than five in an essay of this length) relevant secondary sources should be referenced.