Assignment Details The purpose of this assignment is to persuade a lawmaker, an

Assignment Details
The purpose of this assignment is to persuade a lawmaker, an association’s leader, etc. to implement
anti-racist structural change from a sociological perspective. Your letter must be addressed to an
individual who has authority to make change on your social issue, like the Secretary of Education if you
write about school segregation. You must use sociological reasoning to convince them to make change.
How to Write the Paper
Choose an issue that is relevant to our discussion of race and/or ethnicity and draw on our class
readings to make an evidence-based and sociologically reasoned argument for change. You must have a
position statement that centers a sociological perspective to address both the social issue you are
writing about and how to address the problem. You may choose to write about racism in the medical
industry, schools, policing, workplaces, etc. Still, you only have two pages, so be specific about the issue
you are addressing.
Most of your letter will provide evidence for, and sociologically examine, this social issue. The last
paragraph or two must provide a policy suggestion that your addressee could implement. You must
explain how and why the policy would address the social issue using sociological concepts from this
course. You must explain how the policy could create change and, if it does not address the whole of the
issue, explain why, although it is incomplete, it is still important to enact using sociological reasoning.
Formatting
Papers must be in Times New Roman or Calibri, black ink, 12-point font, with 1-inch margins, double-spaced. Citations must use the American Sociological Association (ASA) format. Refer to Purdue OWL for
citation assistance (link) for help with ASA. Your letter must be approximately 2-3 pages (a minimum of
full two pages). The heading must have your name and the title. The first line must say “Dear ____,” but
replace the blank with the name of your imagined recipient.
Tips
Places to look for policies:
• Bills proposed for legislation (either at the state or federal level)
• The Urban Institute or other institutes like The Brookings Institute or The Century Foundation
• Policy changes proposed in our course readings
• Non-profits (Ex: The Movement for Black Lives has policies on policing and mass incarceration)
Writing a sociological argument:
• Write an argument that clearly focuses your paper on one central issue
o Example: Racial segregation in education is a persistent social issue that, by
implementing regional school systems as proposed by The Carr Institute, could
dramatically reduce racial isolation.
• Consider one or two concepts that can help you weave an argument together, and draw on
evidence from readings and lectures to help you develop your argument throughout the paper
o Example: The unequal distribution of resources, like unpolluted air, occur along racial
lines, what Omi and Winant would argue is a racist racial project (Carr 2021). As such,
the racial disparities we see in asthma rates are due to an unequal distribution of diesel
exhaust in predominantly Black, and formerly redlined, neighborhoods (Manke 2019).

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