Gender articles and Gender stories
Read the 3 academic articles on the brain and sex/gender. Also read the short section on “Selecting a Mix of Primary and Secondary Sources” on p.116 in Writing Research Papers to familiarize yourself with these terms. For this reading discussion, the primary source is the short story, and the secondary source is the article on the brain and sex/gender.
Please make sure you post the initial response by Tuesday of Week 3. Here are the instructions for the initial discussion post:
1. Choose one of the articles on the brain and sex/gender and one of the short stories.
2. Write a CLAIM (in essence, a working thesis) about what the short story reveals about the underlying social message of gender in a sentence or two. You might consider these questions to help you formulate your claim:
What are the underlying messages about masculinity and/or femininity in the story? For example, what patterns of behaviors in men and women are evident in the story? What does the story’s depictions of men and women reveal about what is socially valued in men/women? What messages about relationships between men and women are imbedded in the story?
In what ways does the story’s messages about gender seem to uphold or reinforce stereotypical gender roles/behaviors?
In what ways does the story’s messages about gender seem to challenge or question these gender roles/behaviors?
In what ways does the story’s messages about gender seem to both reinforce and challenge gender roles/behaviors?
3. Write a PIE PARAGRAPH (Point, Illustrate, Explain) in which you:
First, find at least one passage of 1-4 sentences from the short story that seems to support your claim. Then, state the specific point you are making about how the passage(s) support your claim in a sentence or two. Note that the point is not a mere rewording of the claim but may simply relate to one aspect of the claim or may state a more specific point about the claim.
Second, introduce at least one passage from the short story (primary source) that illustrates the point by setting up the context and making clear who is speaking and about what. Be sure to integrate and quote the passage effectively using one of the types of integration of quotes referred to in the ”Conventions about Writing about Literature” handout. Conventions for Writing about Literature.doc Quote the passage word for word and cite its page number using the MLA format. Keep in mind that now that we are using multiple sources, you will need to include author’s last name in your citation.
Third, introduce at least one passage from your chosen academic article on the brain and sex/gender (secondary source) that illustrates the point by setting up the context and making sure that you honor the integrity of the author’s overall theory/argument and do not take the passage out of context. Be sure to integrate and quote the passage effectively, being aware that integrating quotes from nonfiction is a bit different from integrating quotes from literature. Please use the handout on integrating quotes in nonfiction. Integrating Quotes for Nonfiction.doc
Fourth, explain how each quotation helps the reader to understand the point. Be explicit in saying how the quotation supports the point about the underlying social message in the the short story.
This is an example of what your post will look like (Please note that the example is based on a different academic article and different novel than the academic article and short story that you have been assigned):
Love Medicine byLouise Erdrich critiques institutionalized racism by showing how an unjust system of privilege creates loss of identity, culture, and family in her Native American characters.
Erdrich depicts how Gerry Nanapush loses his connection to his family due to the unjust role that systems of privilege play. It is significant that Gerry “believed in justice, not laws” (Erdrich 201) because this implies that there is a difference between justice and laws—that, in fact, the legal system in the United States is unjust. This is made even clearer after he is imprisoned for his fight with the white cowboy. It is then that he realizes “white people are good witnesses to have on your side, because they have names, addresses, social security numbers, and work phones. But they are terrible witnesses to have against you” (Erdrich 201).
“Names, addresses, social security numbers, and work phones” are all indications that social institutions such as work, government, and the legal system grant what Allan Johnson calls “unearned privileges” to white people. Thus, it is the white witnesses who are the ones seen as legitimately having power granted by institutions while the Native American witnesses are not seen as legitimate witnesses for Gerry because they lack this institutional power. This is what Johnson means when he says that “a system is dominated by a privileged group” (91). Erdrich further makes her theme of injustice clear through images of weight. Gerry is sent to prison because he kicks “the cowboy’s testicles” (Erdrich 202), and therefore, “his fertility might be impaired” (Erdrich 202).
This demonstrates the weight of the white cowboy’s ability to procreate in the eyes of the white-dominated legal system. On the other hand, Gerry ends up in a prison where “no children will ever be engendered” (Erdrich 211), and when his and Dot’s daughter Shawn is literally weighed, “she was too light and did not register at all” (Erdrich 211). Gerry’s ability to procreate is given no weight at all, and even though he does have a child, she is born into an unjust world and does “not register at all” with a white-dominated system. Not only is Gerry literally separated from his family and cut off from creating more family by systems of privilege, his daughter, whom he will now never know, is born into that same system.