Fall Writing Assignments
For each seminar, turn in a one- to two-paragraph summary
of the main argument presented in the readings for the day. In most cases,
the argument should be clear, although with a book such as There Are No
Children Here you will have to draw out the implications or the main thrust
of what he describes. In each case, however, make sure you tell us what
the author’s purpose, argument, and conclusions are, not what you
think of them. You may add a separate paragraph on what you think, but do
not let them bleed into each other.
In addition, you will have several longer assignments on which we will give
you extensive feedback:
Monday, October 11: Come in with 8 typed-up facts, pieces of data, or telling
incidents about the history or contemporary situation of education for African
Americans – all drawn from our readings -- and 5 generalizations about
the topic, also based on our readings or your interpretation of them. Give
one copy to your seminar leader and keep one for yourself to bring to class
Tuesday, October 12: During writing workshop, you will break into groups
of 2 to 3, across seminars, read each other’s lists, and discuss how
to turn some of the data and generalizations into a single organizing idea
or thesis statement for your paper.
On Monday, turn in a thesis-driven 3-6 page essay on the topic of
education and African-Americans. Use at least 5 pieces of information (not
generalizations, assertions, or quotes) to back up your assertions and
generalizations. On a separate piece of paper, turn in a typed one-sentence
thesis statement for your paper and a 5-6 sentence outline of your argument.
Revised first essay due on Monday, Nov. 1
Remember that a revision is not
an edit. It involves substantial rethinking and recasting. You will refocus
some paragraphs and replace others entirely.
No paragraph should remain unchanged; few should even remain in the same
Prospectus for second essay due on Monday, Nov. 15
Completed second essay due on Friday, Dec. 3
Tuesday, 10:00 am. Turn in your typed ethnographic field notes for weeks
2-9. If you need to miss class today, have someone else turn in your
notes. Do not bring them late.
Friday, 11-2: Final Exam. Also turn in your field notes for week X and your
field supervisor’s confirmation that you have attended for a minimum
of 60 hours.