This is a collaborative workspace which we will use for our media projects. You will be posting inside the main pages by opening up the window by clicking the Edit button on the page you will be using.
Third Project [Due by April 5th / this is a change from the syllabus]
In the wiki assignments, you have been doing more than taking in information and reflecting on it, but also moving step by step into the kind of preparation that is the foundation for doing humanities research projects. The first assignment paired a classic example of humanities research that analyzed primary sources through “close reading” of the materials with a more recent primary source to offer an opportunity to do likewise, while also allowing us to compare similarities and differences between the past and present. The second assignment had you select materials from within a larger pool to work with in probing the question of gendered representations further. This third and last assignment asks you to generate your own examples for analysis, using the book The Body Electric as your starting point.
The additional component of this third assignment is the fact that The Body Electric does not take as its central focus the question of how popular meanings of and interpretations drawn from science and technology had an impact on Americans’ bodies and minds that may have played out in gendered terms. Our first two assignments did provide source material that directly featured gendered content; for The Body Electric, the historical episodes that are discussed provide a rich set of opportunities for gender analysis, but this perspective is not the one that drives the thematic focus of the book. So part of your task in this assignment is to approach material that is not already preliminarily worked out for you as fitting particular gendered categories for analysis, but instead is more general in its cultural underpinnings, allowing you to see what sorts of results might occur using a broader landscape.
Okay, the specific assignment asks you to do two things:
1) Identify an historical aspect from The Body Electric that you judge to have a significant gendered component to it, and to explain this in a thoughtful paragraph of text; and
2) Discuss to what extent a similar phenomenon exists today, in terms of the incorporation of scientific/technological ideas in relation to our understanding of how modern bodies work (or don’t work, or should work), and whether or not it retains gendered associations (and offer some reasons as to why or why not). This will be a companion paragraph to your first one.
Your paragraphs will be added to the wiki in the way you did for the second assignment, where they all fit on one page. Give your contribution a title and bold it so that it is set off from the others. At the end click the button in the editing bar that has a blue bar in the middle of it and it will add a line at the end. Your contribution should be somewhere between five hundred to nine hundred words in length.
The second project is a discussion of three examples of current images of gender and SciTechMed, drawing on the archive at Sociological Images. The assignment is to pull up the roster of articles they have posted and to select three to feature in your discussion, because they strike you as being particularly significant, they surprise you, they raise interesting questions, they provide an especially good entry into the topic, etc. You will present your three choices by discussing their use in directing our attention to ideas we need to think further about, and linking to them for easy access.
You can create the list of articles to look at by using the search box at the top right of the page under the social media icons. Put in the search terms gender plus science, or technology, or medicine, and you will get a set to work with. You can also add a third term such as race, children, advertising, etc. to see what comes up that may relate to specific interests you have or areas you are curious about.
Give your contribution a title and bold it so that it is set off from the others. At the end click the button in the editing bar that has a blue bar in the middle of it and it will add a line at the end. Your contribution should be somewhere between five hundred to nine hundred words, and posted by Monday, March 3rd.
Our first project will be a media analysis of a recent documentary "The Great Sperm Race" from 2009.
For instructions, click here (these are copied from our Canvas course website).
To start adding your examples from the documentary, go directly to the appropriate page listed in the navigation panel at the right.