In order to complete this assignment, you need to have completed your interview, decided on which Women’s Studies topics your report will cover, and identified supporting material in the course materials (course modules, online articles, and PowerPoint or written lectures).
As a response to this topic, post:
- A one-paragraph summary of your interview experience (8 points).
- introduce your subject in a sentence or two
- briefly discuss how the interview proceeded (you can expand this in your final essay; a couple of sentences are fine here)
- briefly present the major Women’s Studies topics you covered (you do not have to list everything that will appear in the final paper)
- A list of the course materials (at least three items) you have identified which will provide supporting scholarly information for your discussion of the interview (4 points).
- Under each item in the list, a very brief summary of what you have found in that item that will be useful for your essay (6 points).These summaries do not have to be in complete sentences.
- Be sure to clearly identify each item by page number, section number, or reference to the lecture title (2 points).You will need this information to build your citations.
“Items” may include assigned online articles, assigned powerpoints or written lectures, module commentary sections, individual quotes from the commentary or articles, quotes or paraphrases from the powerpoint lectures or other course materials. In other words, if all your support will come from a single course module, choose specific sections or quotes to summarize to get to your three required items. If you have more than three items, you are welcome to include them. You will need specific quotes for the report due next week, so this should be a useful exercise!
Please note that essays which rely entirely (or mostly) on powerpoint lectures for supporting information and do not include the more scholarly material found in the articles and modules will not be scored as highly.
When you are ready, post your thesis and materials summary as a response to this topic. I will respond to this assignment with feedback as soon as I see it. As always, your score will be posted privately under “Grades.”
Please post any questions you have about this assignment to the Ask the Professor discussion.
Sample Interview and Course Materials Summary
I interviewed my friend, Sarah Martin. Ms. Martin is a 43-year-old divorced mother of an 8-year-old with autism and a financial planner. We conducted our interview over email and telephone. She was generous with her time, and provided thoughtful responses to my questions. She even provided follow-up answers when I asked for more information. Some of the major Women’s Studies topics we covered were family roles, motherhood, and work.
Course Materials summary:
- Adrienne Rich, “Claiming an Education:” This essay encourages women to “take responsibility” for themselves. It also will help me to explain the change in Ms. Martin’s attitude toward her own education and role in her marriage that led to her finally completing her college degree with a toddler and a deployed husband after many years of failing classes or dropping out of school.
- “Motherhood” PowerPoint lecture: This lecture discusses the ways motherhood is idealized in our culture. I will use this powerpoint lecture to help explain why, as the mother of a young child, Ms. Martin found it difficult to step into the role of breadwinner after her ex-husband lost his job.
- Course Module 4, Commentary Section I: “It is very difficult to change the imbalance in the division of housework because social roles are so predicated on household tasks. Men don’t feel masculine doing household tasks, and women often feel less feminine if they avoid them. … Many of the women felt that taking good care of their homes and families showed their love, and by extension made them truly womanly (Winkler, 2002).” This section discusses internalized gender roles and the traditional division of labor in the household. It also reflects many of the reasons that Ms. Martin gave for putting her education and career goals off during the first ten years of her marriage.