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Understanding America as a Culturally Diverse Society

General Education Capstone Course

Event Details and Guideline Form

Event title: Understanding America as a Culturally Diverse Society

General Education category event should be listed under: Multicultural Valuing

SCC competency addressed by event:

MCV: Student should be able to identify, analyze and articulate their own values as well as those of others and recognize how these values affect opinions, decisions and behaviors.

MCV: Demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the practices/products and perspectives of the cultures studied.

Guidelines for accomplishment of event:

America is a stratified society, i.e., a class-structured in which the various class levels are arranged in a hierarchical way. In this society there is an uneven distribution of valuable resources such and wealth, power and opportunity. Often, in a culturally diverse society, an individual’s ethnic heritage will either enhance or inhibit his/her access to those valuable resources and seriously impact a person’s capability to attain a particular socio-economic status and social experiences that lead to a satisfying quality of life.

A culturally diverse society such as the United States is one that includes people who are different from one another in regard to socio-cultural characteristics such as race, ethnicity, religion, customs, language, etc.

Pick one of the following short stories, written by an author of a particular ethnicity that deals with people whose social experiences in America are impacted, in various ways, by ethnic identity:

  • Bingo Van, by Louise Erdrich.
  • Jasmine by Bharati Mukherjee.
  • Neighbor Rosicky by Willa Cather.
  • A Long Day’s Dying, by William Eastlake.

Each of the above stories will be on reserve in the library. Ask at the circulation desk for the stories that are on reserve for College 299 (capstone).

Write a minimum 4-page paper with a works cited page that answers the following questions:

  • What are some examples of how the story portrays cultural diversity in America? (see definition of cultural diversity below).
  • What relationship do you see between the ethnic heritage of the principal characters and their social experiences?
  • What does the story say, either explicitly or implicitly, about ways in which ethnicity in a culturally diverse society can impact a person’s self-identity and social relationships?
  • Articulate how these values affect opinions, decisions and behaviors to what you have learned. Find either a supporting or opposing article to support your position and incorporate it into your paper with proper MLA citation.

SCC event creator: Bill Kristen

FOR FACULTY USE ONLY:
Did essay fulfill SCC competency? _____ YES _____ NO _____ PARTIALLY

Did essay fulfill event guidelines? _____ YES _____ NO _____ PARTIALLY