Sunday, November 28, 2010

Final Papers . . .

Because I am always thinking about your writing, I am curious about two things. A) In what ways has your writing changed this semester and how has that change come about? Has it been a positive change, do you think? B) As you are working on your final paper, what is your biggest worry, in regard to your writing of your paper? What do you think you still "don't know how to do," as it were?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

As we sum up . . .

Which sequence from our class this semester -- family, environment, education -- did you find most compelling? Why? What ideas were you introduced to for the first time within the sequence that you found most interesting?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Marriage is for...

In our discussions of the Prop 8 readings, we have discussed some of the reasons people use to support of Prop 8. Often, supporters contend it will help to "protect the institution of marriage" (language that is often used in this debate). As you see it, what IS the role, in modern American society, of the "institution of marriage"? How has this role changed over time? Or has it?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Extended families...

In Roger Jack's "An Indian Story," what many roles does his aunt play in his life? What sort of message does his text send about stereotyped American family structures and those who do and do not represent/embody them? What is the value, to him, of his aunt as guardian and culture-bearer?

Friday, November 5, 2010

What we really miss . . .

According to Coontz, what DO we really miss about the 1950s? Do you think, in America at present, that we are still nostalgic for the '50s? Are YOU nostalgic for a particular time in American history? Why? In regard to the American family, do you think future generations might look back in an idealized or nostalgic fashion on today?

Monday, November 1, 2010

American families

In the introduction to your book's "Harmony at Home" chapter, the author writes that "America is becoming increasingly ambivalent about the future of family life, perhaps with good reason" (20). What do you think are the most worrying phenomena to have developed over the last several decades that have had a negative impact on American families? Why? If you think many of the changes that we have experienced culturally have, in total, had a positive impact on American families, please give some examples.