English 102

Assignment 1

1. In the poem “Immigrants” page 254, what stereotype is the speaker afraid his/her child may encounter.  What actions does the speaker take to avoid that?

2. What stereotype does the speaker wish to argue against in “So Mexicans are Taking Jobs from Americans” page 1052.  What is one argument the speaker  makes against the stereotype.

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3. The speaker “So Mexicans are Taking Jobs from Americans” refers to the economic opportunities that draw immigrants to America.  From the film “Destination America” Part one discuss the particular details of one other group besides Mexicans who came to America for economic opportunity.  Mention where they came from, why they sought a better economic situation and what kind of work they did when they arrived.  Mention one example from the film when America wanted workers from another country for a certain kind of work.

4. In the poem “Refugee Ship” page 1167 why do you think the last line is in Spanish.  From the film Destination America Part Two discuss one immigrant group that has held on to  their traditions and language in America.

Assignment 2

1. The short story “Senior Picture Day” (page 51) begins with the sentence: “Sometimes I put two different earrings in the same ear.”  In the context of the story, what might “two different earrings” symbolize?  On page 53, Terri and the narrator discuss the difference between being Mexican and Californian.  In what ways is the narrator both?

2. What standard of beauty is the narrator of “Senior Picture Day” trying to achieve by pinching her nose?  Can you think of any attempts on the part of women in our society to conform to a standard of beauty that is not natural for them? In what ways does Terri’s life also fail to conform to standards of perfection?  What does that prove?

3. In “It’s Hard Enough Being Me” the narrator states: “Trying to understand who and why I am, while understanding Plato or Homer, is a lot to ask of myself”(136),  What does she mean?  How does her comment support Claude Steele’s research (see video on Stereotype Threat) on the connection between stereotype threat and intellectual achievment?

4. Mention two ways in which Anzaludua in “To Live in the Borderlands Means You” page 1175 expresses a dilemma similar to both “Senior Picture Day” and “It’s Hard Enough Being Me.”  Mention and explain at least one example you know of a person or group living on “the borderlands.”

5. Mention one way in which the play Los Vendidos might reinforce stereotypes, and one way in which it satirizes the whole idea of stereotypes.  Give one example of a stereotype found in popular media today.

ASSIGNMENT 3

1. What does the following conversation between the narrator of “The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fightfight in Heaven” and the policeman demonstrate: “You don’t fit the profile of the neighborhood.”  “I wanted to tell him that I didn’t fit the profile of the country.”  Why does the narrator not fit the profile of the neighborhood?

2. When the narrator of “The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fightfight in Heaven” tells his mother that he doesn’t know what to do with the rest of his life, he says that answer would be fine for most Indians but not for him.  What kind of social capital do most Indians lack?  What kind of social capital does the narrator have?  Why prevents the narrator from making the most of the social capital he does have?

3. When the children in “The Lesson” visit F.A.O. Schwartz the narrator says she is ashamed to walk into the story.  Why is she ashamed?

4. After the children return home from their visit to F.A.O. Schwarz Sugar says, “…this is not much of a democracy if you ask me.  Equal chance to pursue happiness means an equal crack at the dough.”  Do you agree with her?  Do you think people in this country have “an equal crack at the dough?”  Why or why not?  Provide an example to support your answer.

5. From your reading of Find an object (e.g. an image, video clip, or audio file) and insert into a word document. The object will reflect part of your historical or cultural analysis (e.g. a theme, conflict, character, symbol, etc.).  Describe the object and explain how it relates to your topic.  You will eventually use this image analysis as part of Essay 2.

The analysis should be at least 200 words.

” and “The Lesson” what kinds of people would you say work in 7 Elevens?  What kinds of people shop in F.A.O. Schwarz?  Is the difference between them only a question of income?  Can you think of two different stores that you know that also demonstrate this divide in society?

ASSIGNMENT 4

Find an object (e.g. an image, video clip, or audio file) and insert into a word document. The object will reflect part of your historical or cultural analysis (e.g. a theme, conflict, character, symbol, etc.).  Describe the object and explain how it relates to your topic.  You will eventually use this image analysis as part of Essay 2.

Please note that you can use being African American, am from west Africa.

The analysis should be at least 200 words.

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