Final Exam Questions

Directions: Type and double-space all answers to the following questions. Proofread all your work before handing it in. Your completed exam is due to me on Thursday, December 12th, between 10:30am and 12:30pm. Bring completed exams to my office in BRNG 6161.  ………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Directions: Address ten of the following twelve short answer essay questions. Be sure to address all the parts of each question. Aim for one solid paragraph per question. Worth 10 points each.

 1. Briefly describe the ideology behind purity balls. How does tying virginity to the idea of women’s purity harm women, especially young women and survivors of sexual assault?

 2. What is privilege? Looking back at the “Privilege Checklist” handout from class, choose one from the list that you marked. Discuss how this particular privilege has given you some invisible advantages in your life. Now that you’re aware of this privilege, how could you harness it to help combat oppression or encourage change?

 3. According to historian, Robin D. Kelley, [Race] is not about how you look, it is about how people assign meaning to how you look.” When examining racial representations in America, what meanings do we assign to dark-complected individuals? What meanings do we assign to light-complected individuals? Provide relevant examples from the media to support your argument.

 4. Name two reasons why Black women have sometimes been hesitant to identify with the feminist movement in America. According to writers like hooks and Ware, why is it important that Black women address sexism as well as racism in their communities?

 5. Why is the pro-choice movement’s rhetoric of “choice” an inadequate way to frame our debates about abortion? On the other hand, why are the pro-life movement’s attempts to criminalize abortion also ineffective?

 6. Describe the image of ideal female beauty created and disseminated by western advertisers. Briefly describe two serious, real-life consequences for women that result from the repeated sexualization and objectification of women’s bodies in such advertising images.

 7. According to Adair, how are the bodies of poor women and children often “marked” in America? As we “read” these marked bodies, what assumptions do we make about people living in poverty?

 8. How do intersections of class and race affect how we “read” the efforts of different mothers to secure a good education for their children? Use examples from class to support your analysis.

 9. Briefly describe the “New Domesticity” and who participates in this movement. Why have some contemporary feminists embraced this trend? Why have others been critical of it?

 10. According to Cynthia Enloe, give two reasons why “feminine” labor is so often synonymous with cheap labor in the global marketplace. If women are so often exploited as workers, then why have labor unions traditionally been more invested in heavy industry versus light industry?

11. Choose one scene from the 1954 film Salt of the Earth. First, analyze how intersections of race/ethnicity, gender, and class shape interactions among the characters in the scene. Second, describe how a character (or group of characters) in the scene attempts to shift the power dynamic at work in these interactions.

 12. How does Esperanza’s transformation in Salt of the Earth epitomize the struggle to move from false consciousness to revolutionary consciousness? What obstacles or anxieties threaten to prevent her developing a more revolutionary consciousness? What encourages her on her path toward revolutionary consciousness?