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I Would Like You To Analyze A Power Relationship Between Two Different Social Actors

I’m working on a writing Essay and need guidance to help me learn.

Essay Prompt

Drawing from the material in the “Cultural Hegemony and Cultural Ideologies” module, I would like you to analyze a power relationship between two different social actors. Your paper should have the following parts: This will require you to do four things in your essay:

  • explain what power is
  • explain the role that culture can play in the ability of a person or group to dominate another person or group
  • explain the role that role culture can play in the ability of a person or group to resist being dominated by another person or group
  • use the theory of cultural power you have outlined to analyze a relationship between two social actors. Your analysis should:
  • identity who has the power advantage in the relationship (i.e., who is powerful/dominates, and who is powerless/dominated)
  • explain the social, economic, and/or political benefits the dominant actor receives from its power advantage over the subordinate actor
  • explain the role that culture plays in the power relationship. In what ways does culture enable the powerful actor to control and get its way with the subordinate actor? In what ways does culture enable the subordinate actor to resist being dominated by the powerful actor?
  • develop a prognosis for the relationship. Based on your analysis, is the subordinate actor likely to resist or tolerate the domination it faces? Over time, will the dominant actor’s power over the subordinate actor increase or decrease? What developments might balance the power relationship? Be sure that you explain your responses, and that you focus on the role that culture plays in the above questions.

Please keep in mind these three things when writing your essay:

  • By “actor,” I mean an individual or group. As long as the individuals or groups are in relationship with each other, you can choose any two actors that interest you. For example, you could analyze the relationship between a parent and child; a teacher and student; an employer and an employee; a powerful country and relatively powerless country; men and women; police officers and citizens; two people who are married; etc.
  • I encourage you to analyze a real relationship rather than a hypothetical relationship. For example, analyzing the relationship between Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford would be superior to analyzing the relationship between a hypothetical man and a hypothetical woman. Similarly, analyzing the relationship between the Amazon workers who are attempt to form a union in Bessemer, Alabama and their managers would be superior to analyzing the relationship between a hypothetical employer and its hypothetical employees. Or, as a final example, analyzing the relationship between you and your landlord would be superior to analyzing the relationship between a hypothetical tenant and landlord.
  • If you are having trouble selecting a relationship to analyze, please don’t hesitate to seek my advice.

Writing and Organization

Your paper should have the following parts:

  • An introduction that outlines the material your paper will discuss. The introduction should develop a thesis statement that sketches out the paper’s purpose and explains how it will enhance understanding of the topic it addresses. (1-2 paragraphs)

Example: “This paper examines why many Appalachians support the coal industry despite the problems it has caused in the region. My analysis shows that the coal industry has won popular support by running a public relations campaign that links mining to Appalachians’ cultural values. My paper contributes to sociology by highlighting the ways in which big business uses culture to create support for and reduce resistance to industrial pollution.”

  • A literature review that explains what power is; explains the role that culture can play in the ability of a person or group to dominate another person or group; and explains the role that role culture can play in the ability of a person or group to resist being dominated by another person or group. This section should draw from Griswold’s “Culture and Power” chapter, the two Lewin pieces, and the lecture material I presented (1-2 pages)

When writing this part of your paper, make sure you synthesize the material you discuss. To synthesize means to combine constituent elements into a single unified entity.

Here is an example of an un-synthesized paper:

    • Paragraph 1: In “Culture and Power,” Griswold states…
    • Paragraph 2: In “Coal is not Just a Job,” Lewin states…
    • Paragraph 3: In “The Culture Industry,” Horkheimer and Adorno state…

Here is an example of a synthesized paper:

    • “The research shows that culture can affect power relationships in five main ways…”
  • A case study section that uses the theory of cultural power you have outlined to analyze a relationship between two social actors (3-4 pages). Your analysis should:
  • identity who has the power advantage in the relationship (i.e., who is powerful/dominates, and who is powerless/dominated)
  • explain the social, economic, and/or political benefits the dominant actor receives from its power advantage over the subordinate actor
  • explain the role that culture plays in the power relationship. In what ways does culture enable the powerful actor to control and get its way with the subordinate actor? In what ways does culture enable the subordinate actor to resist being dominated by the powerful actor?
  • develop a prognosis for the relationship. Based on your analysis, is the subordinate actor likely to resist or tolerate the domination it faces? Over time, will the dominant actor’s power over the subordinate actor increase or decrease? What developments might balance the power relationship? Be sure that you explain your responses, and that you focus on the role that culture plays in the above questions.

The analysis you provide in the case study should make use of the observations, concepts, and ideas presented in the literature review.

  • A conclusion the summarizes the paper and sketches out its implications (1-2 paragraphs).

Example: “In this paper, I analyzed the relationship between coal producers and people who live in coal mining communities. I showed that coal producers have won residents’ support by linking mining to their cultural values. They have do so in three main ways. First…Second…Third… My paper has contributed to our understanding of culture and power by showing…”

Formatting

Please follow the instructions listed below when crafting your response essay:

  • Your paper should be approximately five pages in length (double-spaced).
  • Use 12-point, Times New Roman font.
  • Use 1” margins.
  • Type your name, the course, my name, and the due date in the upper left-hand corner of your paper.
  • Create an original title for your paper that reflects its content.
  • Include a header or footer that numbers the pages of your essay.
  • Your paper should show that you have read and thought about Conquest of Cool.
  • Make a bibliography and use parenthetical citations where appropriate. You should use American Sociological Association (ASA) guidelines.

Grading

This essay is worth 20 percent of your final grade. Please see the rubric appended to this assignment, which breaks down how I will grade it. In short, the grade you receive will be based on:

  • The depth and breadth of your case study.
  • The degree to which your essay engages with and demonstrates satisfactory understanding of the material in the course module.
  • The clarity of your writing.
  • The degree to which you follow the direction

How to do Parenthetical Citations in ASA Format

Please format your parenthetical citations as follows: (author’s last name publication year). For example, you would cite the MacDonald essays as follows:

  • Some scholars have argued that mass culture destroys high culture (MacDonald 1957).

Please note that you may also cite essay like this:

  • MacDonald (1957) argues that mass culture destroys high culture.

Lastly, please note that if you are using a direct quotation, you should include the page number. For example, if you wanted to quote a passage from the Allan and Daynes piece, you would do so in one of the following ways:

  • “The overarching goal of the Frankfurt School is to bring together Marxist theory, Weberian sociology, and Freudian psychoanalysis in order to better explain modern societies” (Allan and Daynes 2017: 319).
  • Allan and Daynes (2017) claim that “the overarching goal of the Frankfurt School is to bring together Marxist theory, Weberian sociology, and Freudian psychoanalysis in order to better explain modern societies” (p. 319).

Full Citation Information for Sources

Griswold, Wendy. “Culture and Power.” Pp. 163-180 in Cultures and Societies in a Changing

World, 4th Edition. New York, NY: Sage.

Lewin, Philip. [2017] 2019. “‘Coal is not just a Job; It’s a Way of Life’: The Cultural Politics of

Coal Production in Central Appalachia.” Social Problems 66(1): 51-68.

Lewin, Philip. 2020. “Reaching the Boiling Point: Energy and Climate Policy under

the Trump Administration.” Pp. 235-263 in The Future of U.S. Empire in the Americas: The

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