TERMS LIST 2 Ableism: A pervasive system of discrimination and exclusion thatoppresses people who have mental, emotional, and physicaldisabilities. Ally: A person who supports marginalized, silenced, or less privilegedgroups without actually being a member of those groups. This personwill often directly confront and challenge biphobia, homophobia,heterosexism, racism, transphobia and other systems of oppression. Binary Gender: A system that defines and makes room for two andonly two distinct, natural and opposite genders (i.e. male and female).These two genders are defined in opposition to each other, such thatmasculinity and femininity are seen as mutually exclusive. In thissystem, there is no room for any ambiguity or intermingling of gendertraits.
Classism: Bias based on social or economic class. Critical Consciousness: a process of continuous self-reflection and action todiscover and uncover how we continue to be shaped by societal assumptions andpower dynamics: an essential tool to help us to recognize, understand and work tochange the social forces that shape our societies an ourselves. Cultural Appropriation: The adoption of cultural elements not in one’s ownculture, without full knowledge of or respect for its value within the originalculture. Cultural Oppression: Social norms, roles, rituals, language, music, and art thatreflect and reinforce the belief that one social group is superior to anther. Dominance: The systematic attitudes and actions of prejudice, superiority, andself- righteousness of one group (a non-target group) in relation to another (atarget group). Internalized dominance includes the inability of a group orindividual to see privilege as a member of the non-target group.
In Groups, Discuss “Recitatif”Consider the questions below. What does the title “Recitatif” mean? How does the title fit the story? What does” Morrison’s “Recitatif” have in common with Hughes’s “Who’sPassing for Who? What do they share with other works? How are they different? “Passing” the poem “Passing” the short story “The Passing of Grandison” The Human Stain Discuss any other insights into “passing” that you have realized through ourreadings or discussions.
QHQ Discussion: "Recitatif"Where do you think the author came up with the idea to name this story “Recitatif”?
St. Bonny’s Why would Twyla say “my mother won’t likeyou putting me in here” when Roberta wasassigned as her roommate? Why didn’t Roberta’s mother want to shakehands with Twyla’s mother? Why didn’t Roberta, being Twyla’s bestfriend, hang out with her on day both oftheir mothers went to visit them?
Racial Ambiguity: Class Difference? Who was the black girl and who was the white? Why did Toni Morrison not reveal Twyla orRoberta’s race? Did the racial differences between the two girlsaffect their friendship at all? Why do we choose to construct race? What was the bigger conflict, class difference orracism?
Reunions Why did Roberta act different when she sawTwyla at her job? What did Roberta gain from being so shallowand mean to Twyla? Why doesn’t Roberta help Twyla when thecrowd rocks her car?
Mental Illness? Why does Roberta seem so mentally messed up? The story hints at the fact that Twyla may havesome form of mental problems, due to hersuppression of certain memories, lack of somewhatbasic knowledge (poor grammar in her story aswell), and irrational behavior at times. What is theauthor’s purpose for this? Does Twyla or Roberta have a memory problem oris something more complex than that?
Maggie Q: Why is there such confusion about what really happened to Maggie? Q: Why do the girls argue constantly over the details of the events of Maggie? Q: Was Maggie attacked by Twyla or not, who is telling the truth(fact)? Q: Why did Roberta want Twyla to believe that they had kicked Maggie? Q. Why do Twyla and Roberta remember a similar story but the key detail theyboth forget is the color of Maggie’s skin? Q: What race was Maggie? Q: Does the last line of the story where finally, the truth of Maggie isquestioned, indicate that they’re suddenly realizing the impact of onememory? Q. Was Maggie a metaphor for something?
ComparingWorksWe Have Read What does” Morrison’s “Recitatif” have in common withHughes’s “Who’s Passing for Who? What do they share with other works? How are theydifferent? “Passing” the poem “Passing” the short story “The Passing of Grandison” The Human Stain Do you have any other insights into “passing” that youhave realized through our readings or discussions.
Discussion: Does PassingReinforce the socialconstruct?Disrupt the socialconstruct?
Passing scholar, Leo Spitzer writes that passing was “by and largea personal solution to discrimination and exclusion. It was anaction that, when accomplished successfully, generally divorcedits individual practitioners from others in the subordinated group,and in no way challenged the ideology of racism or the system inwhich it was rooted. Indeed, because individuals responding tomarginality through . . . passing could be viewed as eitherconscious or unwitting accomplices in their own victimization—aspersons consenting to the continuing maintenance of existinginequalities and exclusionary ideologies—it is certainlyunderstandable why they often elicited such scathing criticismfrom their contemporaries” (Qtd. in Kennedy 11-12)Reinforcement of Social Construct
“Passing, however, does pose at least some challenge to racistregimes. That is why they typically try to prevent it. Fleeingbondage by passing may have been an individualistic responseto the tyranny of slavery but it did free human beings andhelped to belie the canard that slaves were actually contentwith their lot. The successful performance of “white man’swork” by a passing Negro upset racist claims that blacks arecategorically incapable of doing such work. The extent of thedisturbance is severely limited by the practical necessity ofkeeping the passing secret. But under some circumstances alimited disturbance is about all that can be accomplished”(Kennedy 12).Disruption of Social Construct
The Prompt:If passing for white will get a fellow better accommodations on the train, better seatsin the theatre, immunity from insults in public places, and may even save his life froma mob,” only idiots would fail to seize the advantages of passing, at least occasionally ifnot permanently.”Write an essay of four to six pages arguing for or against William Pickens’s statement.Use support from the texts you have read so far, our discussions, and your owninsights.Do you agree with Pickenss statement?If yes, why?If no, why not?
YourThesisYour refined thesis will be your position onWilliam Pickens’s Statement: Do you agreewith him or not? Why or why not? You mayrefer to Pickens or not in your thesis. You mayforecast your reasons in your thesis, or youmay refer to a broader theme and provide yourreasons in the body of your essay.
Write aWorkingThesisYou can use these as models or examplesRacial passing is a personal decision, and people should seize theopportunity if they can in order to defeat racism and discrimination.Passing is a selfish act that reinforces hierarchy in society, and it should beavoided despite the opportunities it offers the individual.While racial passing for personal safety is a necessary and acceptablebehavior, passing in general violates community norms and reinforces thesocial construct of racism.While full time passing violates familial and community connections andshould be avoided, the wise person will pass part time to take advantage ofthe benefits it can reap, including the opportunities to escape racism andoppression.
Refer to your FREECASH chart. What are your “reasons” for agreeing ordisagreeing with the act of passing? Your reasons should connect to your thesis.Each one should be a topic for at least one body paragraph. Some reasons willrequire multiple paragraph explanations. Consider your best support for your assertion.This will likely be from your brainstormingusing FREECASH. Find textual evidence to support your position. Explain how your examples support yourthesis. You can also use outside sources if you wouldlike to, but they are not necessary for thispaper.
Building Body Paragraphs Topic Sentence: This is reason #1 that you agree or disagree. This sentenceshould clearly support your thesis. Textual Evidence: This is an example from one of the texts that we read. Explanation/Analysis: This is where you explain how your example supportsyour topic sentence. You can also draw conclusion from inferences. Other Evidence: This could be from another primary text, a secondary text, orfrom your personal experience. Explanation/Analysis: This is where you explain how your example supportsyour topic sentence. You can also draw conclusion from inferences. Transition: This section moves your reader from your first body paragraph toyour second body paragraph.
IntroductionsYou never get a second chance to make a first impression. Theopening paragraph of your paper will provide your readers withtheir initial impressions of your argument, your writing style, andthe overall quality of your work. A vague, disorganized, error-filled,off-the-wall, or boring introduction will probably create a negativeimpression. On the other hand, a concise, engaging, and well-written introduction will start your readers off thinking highly ofyou, your analytical skills, your writing, and your paper.
Start by thinking about thequestion you are trying to answer:Write an essay of four to six pages arguing for or against William Pickens’s statement:"If passing for white will get a fellow better accommodations on the train, better seats in thetheatre, immunity from insults in public places, and may even save his life from a mob," wroteWilliam Pickens, "only idiots would fail to seize the advantages of passing, at least occasionally ifnot permanently"Your entire essay will be a response to this question, and yourintroduction is the first step toward that end. Your direct answerto the assigned question will be your thesis, and your thesis willbe included in your introduction, so it is a good idea to use thequestion as a jumping off point.
Open with an attention grabber. Considerthese options:• A provocative quotation: Consider a line or two from one of the texts weread. Then give some background about passing.• An intriguing example of passing: Provide a situation or two in which aperson might be inclined to pass.• A puzzling scenario: Imagine a scene that makes a reader consider theconsequences or benefits of passing.• A vivid and perhaps unexpected anecdote: Open with a short story abouta successful or failed passing attempt.• Find common ground with your reader: Offer a contemporary example ofpassing (maybe a humorous one, even) and then explain the morereasons for passing in this earlier time period.
Avoid statements like "In this paper, I will arguethat racial passing destabilizes the socialconstruction of race and is therefore beneficial tosociety." While this sentence points toward your mainargument, it isnt especially interesting. It might bemore effective to say what you mean in adeclarative sentence: “Racial passing destabilizesthe social construction of race and is thereforebeneficial to society." It is much more convincing to tell your readersthat than to tell them that you are going to saythat it does. Assert your main argumentconfidently. After all, you cant expect your readerto believe it if it doesnt sound like you believe it!
Introductions to Avoid1. The restated question introduction: Twists the question to take up space in theintroduction.2. The place holder introduction: Offers several vague sentences that don’t really saymuch.3. The Websters Dictionary introduction. This introduction begins by giving the dictionarydefinition of one or more of the words in the assigned question.4. The "dawn of man" introduction. This kind of introduction generally makes broad,sweeping statements about the relevance of this topic since the beginning of time.5. The book report introduction. This introduction gives the name and author of the bookyou are writing about, tells what the book is about, and offers other basic facts aboutthe book.
An intriguing example ofpassing: Provide a situationor two in which a personmight be inclined to pass. A provocative quotation:Consider a line or two fromone of the texts we read. A puzzling scenario: Imaginea scene that makes a readerconsider the consequencesor benefits of passing. A vivid and perhapsunexpected anecdote: Openwith a short story about asuccessful or failed passingattempt. Find common ground withyour reader: Offer acontemporary example ofpassing (maybe a humorousone, even) and then explainthe more reasons for passingin this earlier time period.Let’s Try to Write an Introduction or Two
Possible OutlineIntroduction:Thesis: This will likely be near the end of your introductionMultiple Body Paragraphs supporting your thesis: The topic sentences of your body paragraphs(probably situated fairly early in the paragraph) should connect directly to your thesis. You should use thefollowing rhetorical strategies to support your topic sentence:define (describe and/or characterize unfamiliar terms, situations, or events)classify (briefly distinguish between types: full time versus part time or kinds of passing)exemplify (provide examples from primary or secondary texts)analyze (explore and/or evaluate, particularly in terms of the connections of theexamples to your reasons or thesis)explain (give details about) the connection between your example and your assertions.conclude (provide a logical conclusion for your readers)Transition (prepare your reader for the next paragraph.Counter Argument: Anticipate your readers questions or doubts. Will will discuss this in our next class.Conclusion: We will discuss this in our next class.
WritingSketch out a rough outline.Intro: What kind?Thesis: Write out a working thesis or your refined thesisBody 1: One of your strongest arguments supporting your thesis.support/exampleBody 2: A second paragraph explaining your first reason.Body 3: Another reasonsupport/exampleBody 3: Another reasonsupport/exampleBody 4:One of your strongest arguments supporting your thesis.support/exampleCounterargument:Conclusion:
HOMEWORK Reading: Begin Stone Butch Blues (1-65) Post #12: Post partial draft: Introduction, Thesis,Minimum three body paragraphs (with topicsentences, evidence, explanation, and analysis) Studying: Vocab/Terms