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For your second paper assignment, I would like you to use the evidence from the Scott and Ignatieff readings to explore the relationship and tensions between one’s sense of oneself as an individual and one’s participation within a collective identity or group.
In other words, What is the relationship between individual and group identity?
Before writing your paper, you may consider the following questions:
Does belonging to a group support a person’s sense of self as an individual or work to suppress or inhibit it because of the need to conform? Does it matter if group belonging is voluntary (chosen) or not? If group identity is relational and therefore fluid (as Ignatieff suggests), what are the bonds within a group (between group members) made of? What are the consequences to the individual when the group’s values or ideologies do not do not match the individual’s expectations or experiences? Is it possible to value the self and one’s own groups without devaluing those who do not belong?
Your essay should not attempt to answer all of these questions. Rather each question offers one possible way to approach the larger assignment question. You may choose to use any one of these questions as a starting point.
Suggestions as you prepare to write your rough draft:
First, stay away from the five-paragraph essay format taught in high school writing. This is a chance to think through what your own position is and ground that position in textual analysis.
Summarize effectively and succinctly. What are the major ideas they are working with? Where and what resources do they avail themselves to in order to support their claims? Hint: each writer’s work may be useful in a different way. One writer may give you critical language, terms, and concepts to work with to discuss another writer’s work.
Each body paragraph should begin with a claim and then involve direct evidence (cited quotations) from at least one reading that supports that claim. Try to use a 2 author body paragraph at least twice in this paper.
Look for passages that you can analyze. “Good quotes” are relative to your intended use. Textual evidence is used to support, never supplant, your ideas.
All papers are to follow MLA format guidelines. MLA is more than just “citation” formatting, but the structure of the entire paper: 1inch margins on all sides, 12 pt. font, etc. Consult your citation handout or me for any questions. Also, remember the sample paper on Blackboard is a resource and reference.


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