Race and Ethnicity: Fall 2022-Writing Assignment

Think critically think about the key ideas, concepts, and /or theories we have covered in class and in the text in writing your essay.

Assignment: For this writing assignment you are asked to write an autobiographical essay that reflects upon and analyzes how the structure of race and ethnic relations in the United States (or in other countries where you have lived) has impacted the course of your own life in some significant way.

You may wish to consider, for example, how concepts we have already discussed in class—such as racial formation, prejudice, institutional discrimination, residential segregation, white privilege, immigration, and/or assimilation—have played a role in making you who you are, or in making it harder/easier for you to become who you would like to be in the future.

If there is some aspect of your life experiences related to racial/ethnic matters that we have not addressed in class in significant detail, (e.g., passing, colorism (light skin vs dark skin), health problems associated with racial discrimination, intergenerational conflicts within immigrant families, or the impact of bilingualism on school achievement.) you may need to do some additional research into these matters but you are certainly welcome to include discussion of these issues in your essay. 

While this is an autobiographical essay you are expected to rely on course readings in your paper to help explore and explain your experiences from both a personal and sociological perspective.

Format and Layout:

  • Essays should be 4-5 pages in length, doubled spaced, with 1 inch margins. Typeface should be no larger than size 12 Times New Roman font.  

Use of scholarly sources:

  • You will need to relate your own life experiences to the contributions of at least two (2) scholarly books/articles/reports, in addition to your textbook and any other materials that we have covered in the course.

Citations and references:

  • Lengthy direct quotations are not acceptable. You should paraphrase the author’s ideas in your own words.
  • All sources should be cited parenthetically in the text and included on your

reference page according to ASA or APA style guidelines. 

  • I encourage you to seek the assistance of a Writing Studio tutor (if needed) in the completion of this assignment; but remember: you, not your tutor, are ultimately responsible for the quality and content of the paper you submit.

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