What social and historical factors have contributed to making you the person you are today?
Auto-ethnography (4-5 double-spaced pages) (a non-academic sample writing was posted in the Module 1 as food for thought)
As ethnographers, we must be sensitive to the nature of our identity and appreciate that our life experiences shape our unique view of reality. This assignment provides an opportunity to reflect on the social and historical conditions and life experiences that you believe have been influential in forming your identity. You may consider the possible influence of your 1) ethnic background; 2) class; 3) gender or sexual orientation; 4) family circumstances and/or 5) general or specific life experience. In other words, what social and historical factors have contributed to making you the person you are today?
One way to frame this exercise is to prepare and submit an autobiographical account with what you consider to be crucial elements of your background. Another approach is to imagine that you are about to conduct fieldwork on a topic of your choice. Identify your fieldwork for the reader and specify specific attributes, life experiences, beliefs or values that you believe will affect your ability to conduct the research, and/or your approach to this topic. What will the reader need to know about you in order for you to appear to be a credible ethnographer?
In your writing, you must balance your personal narrative with critical analysis. The most important aspect of this assignment is the demonstration of your ability to incorporate into your analysis the course readings, handouts, videos, and discussions. Be assured that you are not expected to disclose anything that might make you feel uncomfortable and that the contents of this assignment are confidential. If you have any concerns, please let me know.
Your essays will be marked on the basis of the following criteria:
A good balance of descriptive and critical analysis
Clarity of expression, grammar, style, etc.
Demonstrated understanding of concepts and theories covered by this course.
Originality of data, sharpness of observation and insightfulness of analysis.
Consistent citation patterns.
See below for a more specific marking rubric
A catchy informative title
An explicit, strong thesis
Engagement of course materials/concepts/theories
Balance between descriptive and critical analysis
Insightfulness of the analysis