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GEN&SEX 50C Gender and Popular Culture Tu & Th 8-9:20 a.m.

, HIB 100
Course Code: 32550 University of California, Irvine
Spring 2014 Instructor: H. Adam Ackley, Ph.D.

Dr. ACKLEY - 1
GEN&SEX 50C SPRING 2014
WRITING GUIDE: Critical Reflection Essay (3-6 pages)
Due 5/1/14, one week prior to midterm will respond to guiding questions, course materials, and
discussions from Units 1 and 2 and parts of Unit 3 as applicable, particularly CLASS ACTIVITY at top of
p.22 and PROBLEM-BASED LEARNING EXERCISE 2 on page 23 (in Trier-Bieniek & Leavy Ch. 1):
WRITING PROMPT: Most scholars of gender and popular culture today start with the assumption that
images of gender are not neutral or objective: our ideas about men and women, ethnic groups,
sexualities, and civil society are actually formed or at least shaped and influenced by cultural texts.
Based upon what you have studied in this course so far, what images of gender do we see in popular
culture and how do we read them? Who creates and disseminates these images? Who benefits from
them? Cite one particular example of the intersection of gender and popular culture to illustrate your
general argument: How does the cultural/historical context of this example influence the way it images
gender? Cite readings to support your answers as well as evaluating the strengths and weaknesses you
see in the responses read and discussed in the course so far.
SOURCES: Consult M & M References section (215-231), TB &L Recommendations for Further Reading
(199-202) and sources cited at end of chapters or in footnotes of required articles for credible academic
resources to supplement your required course resources (texts, articles, other media). Cite sources with
full academic citations, also using quote marks around all direct quotes less than four lines or indenting
quotes of four lines or more. Using at least six sources (including required readings) and citing them
properly will comprise 25% of the assignment grade.
FORMAT: no more than double-spaced, no more than Times 12 pt. font, no more than 1-inch margins
DUE DATE: One week before midterm exam.
We have seen that most scholars of gender and popular culture we studied tend to assume that images
of gender are not neutral or objective: our ideas about men and women, ethnic groups, sexualities, and
civil society are actually formed or at least shaped and influenced by cultural texts. Based upon what you
have studied in this course so far, what images of gender do we see in popular culture and how do we
read them? Who creates and disseminates these images? Who benefits from them? Cite one particular
example of the intersection of gender and popular culture to illustrate your general argument: How
does the cultural/historical context of this example influence the way it images gender? Cite course
readings up to this point to support your answers as well as evaluating the strengths and weaknesses
you see in the responses read and discussed in the course so far. (More guidelines posted at end of
syllabus.)

1. How are our beliefs and values about gender shaped by the kinds of popular media we watch,
play, and listen to and consumer goods we buy, including social media to which we contribute
through user-generated content?