Critical Reflection 1 – An Introduction to Race as a Concept and a Construct & The Concept of Whiteness
Critical Reflection Papers
Each week we cover a variety of topics falling in the larger thematic area of our class. At times, we view part of a film or a documentary or other forms of media, including written material. Other times we’ll simply be reflecting on our discussion and lecture material.
My questions/issues posed to you (overall) ask that you apply your critical thinking skills to discuss the themes in question with what we’re reading and talking about in class. These Critical Reflections are meant only to help you think through the issues we’re grappling with in class, so there usually will be no direct right or wrong answer. A solid paper engages our reading assignments along with the media text(s) in question and class discussion. Remember it’s an open format: I want to see how you’re digesting the material, but you will need to remember to engage all of the material for each topic. That said, please do not give me the answer you think I seek from you. Also, this is not a journal – it’s a thoughtful, college-level essay.
Do not simply give a review or your opinion of the text/s. Rather, use your critical thinking skills to discuss how it deals with the various representation(s). For instance, if you’re writing a paper on a clip from a series of commercials you watch, you would write about how they ‘deal’ with sex and sexuality. Is it a clear focus? How so? Again, your critical reflections are not graded on a right or wrong basis. I want you to have fun with these. Include a critical examination of what your reaction is to the text and its subject matter. An important question to ask yourself is, “What am I getting out of this?” The questions I pose to you will attempt to elicit these responses.
Critical Reflection One
After reviewing the Prezi (Links to an external site.)from last week, and the videos today about Whiteness, reflect now about things you learned. A suggestion is to return to the Presentation and review slide by slide. Which slides/videos affected you the most? Why and in what way?
After you’ve written out your thoughts about the presentation, write a personal reflection about your reaction (or reactions) to the presentation overall. What did you think about the various slides? What did you learn? Pay particular attention to what was hard to watch or to what was challenging for you. Was any of it boring? Why? Was any of it funny? Why? While this is a personal reflection, do not soapbox or write solely on how you justify your personal perspective. Spend time with the material and discuss it intellectually, citing thoroughly and thoughtfully throughout. Be sure to also review the Critical Thinking Mini-Guide.
Pick three slides and write a more focused reflection on the above questions. Use specific examples and cite where appropriate. 2-3 pages – that is, no less than two, no more than three. Follow the writing guidelines in the syllabus.