Preparing for Your Editorial

Finally, what do you think about the monument debate and why?  Your first graded piece of work will be an editorial.  Below is a summary of the notes created in class and articles we have read.  You do not need to do any additional research to write your opinion piece.  You will be completing the paper in stages: planning, paper and revisions.  Due dates for each section are below.

Yesterday we made a list of the reason for removing or leaving the arguments:

Reasons to leave the Monuments Reasons to Remove the Monuments
§  Educational value

§  Honors soldiers/ancestors

§  Aesthetics

§  Historical Relevance (Past & Present)

§  Shows evolution of though (with proper context)

§  Disrespectful

§  Not educationally effective without context

§  Rallying point for white supremacists

§  Empty pedestal also makes a point

§  In the Confederacy’s own words they are for the preservation of slavery

§  Spike in monuments as response to Civil Rights movement

§  Reminders of the Lost Cause

§  No longer reflect contemporary values

§  No parallel in monuments in the north


For Oct 26:

Complete the Planning Sheet portion of this handout


“Whose Heritage? Public Symbols of the Confederacy” Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) April 21, 2016

“Tempers Flare Over Removal of Confederate Statues in New Orleans” Richard Fausset, May 7, 2017 New York Times

Why I Changed My Mind About Confederate Monuments” Kevin M. Levin, Aug 19, 2017 The Atlantic



What Do You Say?

Timeline of Monuments from SPLC —

After watching Mitch Landrieu’s May 23, 2017 speech on the removal of Confederate monuments in New Orleans, we looked at the element of pathos in the speech – including word choices, images conjured and call outs to patriotism.  In class this week we will look at the facts around these statues.  Where are they?  How many?  When were they put up?  Who’s idea was it? Get ready you will be making your own argument for or against monument removal after this!

For Oct 19:

  • Read the two reports on the mayor’s speech that you took home: “NOLA Mayor: Civil War Monuments Caused a ‘Great Migration’ Out of the City” and “New Orleans Mayor’s Message on Race”
  • Complete the questions about the two articles found HERE



Jonathon Haidt’s TED Talk The Moral Roots of Liberals and Conservatives .

Example of reciprocity between mountain lions

Wondering about concrete examples and implications?  Of course you were.  Read more about framing HERE



Social Movements

Prohibition Silent Civil Rights March Suffragettes

This week we will examine the elements of a successful social movement and practice reading research articles.  Bring a laptop if you can.

Before Apr 27:


Writing Tips infographics


Health, Socially Defined and Unequally Distributed


The way we view dying and death is, not surprisingly, culturally determined.  Are we open and accepting?  In denial? Staving it off for as long as possible? We will spend the first hour considering death and dying in America through a discussion of the short film Northfound.

Our second hour we will look at mental illness in the United States.  How it is defined and who is affected.

For April 20:


Part 2 of the different high school videos,

One of the first social epidemiology studies and a great read, The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson.  Describes the effort to understand and stop a cholera epidemic in 19th century London.

A prime example of social definition of illness in The Spirit Catches You and Then You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman.  Presents California doctors trying to treat epilepsy in a young Hmong patient.

FOLLOW-UP from class:

Mental health Quiz

TED talk on stigma of mental illness.

Health Powerpoint



There is so much we could look at with of public system, goals, financing, school choice, preschool, higher ed, etc etc etc.  We are going to narrow our focus to high school and college.

Primary question: Does education reinforce existing stratification or provide a way to overcome it?

By Apr 13:

  • Read Hayley Glater, The Atlantic, March 30, 2017 What If Students Only Went to School Four Days a Week? 
  • Read Tristan Bridges, Sociological Images, Mar 20 , 2017 Racial and Educational Segregation in the US
  • Write a response paper: Summarize both articles and answer the primary question.
  • And one last thing…pick a paper topic.  Where can you find a topic?Check your book – at the end of each chapterLook back over your papers – what were you interested in?  What made you mad? Or excited? Or hopeful?Look back over the blog posts – which readings were interesting to you?

    A sociology blog, thesocietypages series “There’s Research on That”

    Narrow it down, for example:

    Education  to  gender difference to  Math performance/achievement by boys and girls in middle or high school



ListenHow For-Profit Colleges Sell “Risky Education” To The Most Vulnerable, Mar 27 Fresh Air on NPR

How to Get Low-Income Students Into Selective Colleges   Hidden Brain on Morning Edition April 12, 2017

Read: The difference between top-tier colleges and mid-level may  not matter for middle-upper income students

Watch: These may be found in the library or on streaming services.


The Lottery

Waiting for Superman

Hoop Dreams

Video from class:  A Tale of Two Schools Part 1 and Part II