|Culture can be so all-encompassing that we fail to see that the way we do things is not the best or only way to do them. In this reflection (relying heavily on and citing course materials), please consider the following:
1) Think of a social fact that you always assumed to be true but recently learned might not be.
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2) Examine how your cultural and upbringing shaped your views on this topic.
3) Explain how you came to see that, what you always assumed was true, may not be?
4) Are you aware of other places in the world where people do things differently in this regard?
For example, you could write about infant sleep. I was raised in a culture where the norm was to let infants cry to “learn” to sleep. But, after I had my first child I read a great deal of anthropological and biological work on infant sleep and learned that sleep training is a very American and European practice and is not biologically normal. So I did not sleep train my children (they sleep fine). If I was writing an essay, this could be my topic and I’d explain my cultural background and changing perspectives in greater detail, relying on course materials in my analysis. (If you are interested in the topic of infant sleep and child rearing, I recommend Our Babies Ourselves – a great scientific look at these topics!)
Or, you could write about male circumcision. I was raised Lutheran and this was an assumed practice in my community and family. As I grew, I learned that it is not a common practice in most places in the world and my thoughts on the topic shifted. If I was writing an essay, this could be my topic and I’d explain my cultural background and changing perspectives in greater detail, relying on course materials in my analysis
Each essay should be approximately one to two pages, single-spaced. It should start with an introductory paragraph that ends with a clear thesis. This should be followed by 3-5 supporting paragraphs (Each with clear topic or transitions sentences). Essays should end with a clear conclusion paragraph.
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