Description: Write a 1500-1750 word (not including
bibliography/references) sociological autobiography in which you appropriately
use a minimum of six sociological (maximum eight) concepts to demonstrate that
you understand the role of societal factors that have influenced specified
aspects of your life. Your essay will focus on your personal experiences
of either one of the following:
You can focus on one important
single issue that you believe has played an important role in your life (e.g.
your community, your interest is a particular sport or genre of music, your
parents’ economic class position, your cultural capital) and use sociological
concepts to analyze why that issue has been important in your life.
B) You can keep track of your
typical consumption activities in a given week and use sociological concepts to
analyze how your consumption activities say something about who you are.
requires you to demonstrate your comprehension of required readings (these are
mainly textbook chapters), a selection of supplemental course readings, and a
selection of sociological concepts.
· Direct engagement with
and reference to a minimum of five (and maximum of eight) textbook chapters.
· Direct engagement with
and reference to a minimum of two (and maximum of four) additional sources from
your supplementary readings and videos list.
· Direct engagement with
a minimum of six (maximum eight) sociological
concepts from your textbook. You must
explain the concepts and then use them accurately to demonstrate that you
understand them. The list of approved concepts is provided below. Please
BOLD concepts at first use.
. Give careful attention to essay composition and writing skills
Remember to tell the reader what you are going to do, and then do
it. Your essay must include an Introduction (introduce
the purpose of the essay and how it aligns with the approach of this course), a
thesis statement (https://spark.library.yorku.ca/choosing-a-topic-creating-a-working-thesis/ Hover your cursor over bolded
text to see definitions of concepts), a body (where your essay content is logically organized and linked to
the course approach and key concepts) and conclusion
(where you briefly summarize your key points).
Your thesis statement must be approved by your TA. Your thesis statement must be submitted by
19 January or you will lose one mark. Your
essay will not be accepted without a TA approved thesis statement. A thesis statement upload link will be
Be accurate in conveying source material and include full
reference to any sources that you use. Sources
cited in your endnotes or bibliography must be used explicitly in your essay
(do not ‘pad’), and the significance of the source must be clear.
Make a commitment to writing clearly and well, and to submitting
edited, grammar-checked and spell-checked work.
We do not want to evaluate work that has not been proof-read and
polished. We will automatically deduct 5% of the value of the assignment for
work that has not been spell-checked, and 5% of the value of the assignment for
work that has not been grammar-checked. If you have concerns about your
abilities in any of these areas, please contact York University’s Learning
Skills Services for assistance.
Your essay should be approximately 6-7 pages in length (12pt.
font, double spaced), or approximately 1750 words. Be succinct and effective in
your content delivery. Use a constant
1.5″ margin on each page. Always include page numbers for citations or
quotes from the assigned reading. Properly number the pages (page 1 is the
first text page).
Every time you refer to textbook or other source material, you must
include a citation! We are very concerned about thorough and proper citation of
your source material (see the discussion of academic honesty). References should not be an after-thought. They are not optional. References (how you acknowledge the scholarly
work of others) are a crucial aspect of scholarly writing. We need to know where ideas come from.
Reference style in also really important! How you cite a
source impacts the ability of others to research that source. As well, inconsistent or incomplete reference
style looks sloppy and gives the reader a negative impression of your skills
and commitment to scholarly writing. You
may use any conventional academic referencing format, such as APA, MLA, and
Chicago Style, etc. You will find instructions for a number of styles on Spark.
If you have not already done so, it may be helpful to choose a reference style,
learn it well, and employ it consistently in your academic writing.
When the textbook authors are citing the work of someone else, you
must include the name of the original source of information.
Provide a proper in-text citation
the first time that you reference a specific textbook chapter or other
approved source. Here are some examples of how you can cite your textbook: (Johnston et al., 2017, chapter 2, 40). Or
“In chapter two…. (Johnston et al., 2017, 40).
For subsequent paraphrased
references to that chapter you may include reference to the chapter only (e.g.
However, subsequent direct
quotations must include proper in-text citations including the authors’
name, publication year, and page number.
If you are using a paper copy of the textbook,
please include page numbers (here represented by 40) with every reference to
the textbook. We realize that this may
not be possible with the e-version of the textbook. In these instances please include an asterisk
* in place of the page number.
Essays are designed to
be very specific to this course. Essays
that are not on an approved topic and that do not utilize the course analytic
framework materials will receive a
grade of 0.
You can use the essay
evaluation rubric (coming soon!) as a checklist to ensure that you have
completed all of the essay criteria.
I have extended the
deadline for this essay. Earlier
submission of essays is welcome. Late
submission is not ok. You will find the
late assignment policy in the course syllabus.
(You may only select concepts from this list.)
· Working class
· Middle class
· Material conditions
· Cultural capital
· Wage labour
· Global commodity chain
· Global south
· Social construction
· Nuclear family
· Care work
· Biological determinism
· Cultural relativism
· Consumer capitalism
· Upscale emulation
· Symbolic interaction
· Social structure
· Alienation (Marx’s
· Environmental crisis
· Class (Mark Thomas)
AND QUESTIONS TO GUIDE YOUR ANALYSIS:
Option A: Some questions that may help you think about
how to focus your essay:
· Is there
something that is enmeshed closely with your sense of self and your identity?
Explain your relationship to it in sociological terms, and how this relation is
socially organized (the social origins – not psychological, biological,
religious, etc.). Is it a style or a
brand? Does it involve music, sports,
literature, social media, etc.? Explore how this came to be the case.
· Have you had
certain advantages or disadvantages in your life because of your family’s
cultural capital? How has this shaped your
everyday and life choices and outcomes? Explore how this came to be the case.
· Discuss other
options with your TA.
Option B: Some
questions that may help you think about how to focus your essay:
· What are the
reasons why you go shopping?
(Necessities and practical items, entertainment, social time with
friends, nice things in advertisements, Instagram, etc., that beckon you,
latest tech releases, and so on).
· How much of
your shopping activity is actually for necessities?