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Submitted By aporte04
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Department of History
HIST*2800 Winter 2014
“The Trouble with Normal”
Part One: Sample Outline (15%) Date Due: Drop Box Feb 24th

Historically, social problems about youth and youth subcultures have been used as a wedge to pry open private family life and intimate relations, for public gaze or scrutiny. The purpose of this essay for you to play the role of an ANTHROPOLOGIST studying STRANGE popular cultural treatments of: A) youth subculture; or, B) the nuclear family unit. Your outline and final essay must view either topic A or B from three different social science theoretical perspectives or theories (suggestions: structural functionalism, Marxism, deviance or labeling theory, feminism, men’s movement, queer theory, marketing theory, youth transition theory, leisure or sub-cultural theory, etc.). The movies will provide opportunities for you to practice casting a “serious eye” on the historical and social construction of “normal” class, race and gender roles, and their links to social institutions (family and school). You should look/imagine how the film provide “primary source” evidence of particular norms, values, ideologies, rituals or worldviews, at a point in time. The sitcoms tend to take a light-heated or silly approach to dark and serious social issues. You should look/imagine how sitcoms over 3 decades have emphasized elite prejudices, stereotypes, punished nonconformity, and promoted or reinforced heterosexism, classism, sexism, etc. AND also how sitcoms resisted them? Can sitcoms or films be forces for cultural change? Late Penalty: 1 mark per day. Not accepted after Feb 28th.

Outline (PowerPoint or Prezi. Keep a CVC until your final essay is graded in April):

Slides 1: Introduction (one paragraph, identify your theme and 3 theories).
Slides 2-3: Two feature length films (data collection 1 may have been shown in class).
Slide 4-8: Three Sitcoms (content analysis of 6-8 episodes over 30 year time span).
Slide 9: Tentative conclusion (data and analysis reception by contemporary audience).
Slide 10: Bibliography (press interviews, theorists, media reports, journals articles).

Final Essay Questions:

1) What is the main theme of each film and/or sitcom? (actions, rituals, style) 2) What aspect of the theme is informed by (functionalism, Marxism/conflict theory, deviance, labeling theory, feminism, men’s movement, queer theory, marketing theory, transition theory, leisure or subcultural theory, consumption patterns). 3) How has the treatment of the theme changed over 3 decades? 4) Identify elite, hegemonic, middle-class prejudices, +&- stereotypes, non-conformity, reinforced heterosexism, classism, sexism, etc. 5) How to these media promote “normality” or “social problems” in theory? 6) Link your answers closely to specific secondary source readings. 7) Take #### detailed notes & collect quotes. Be critical, original and creative!!!!!!…...

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