Next week you will be doing your first RAID in mentor session.
We will practice a RAID in the main session of class on Tuesday, as well.
The practice RAID will not be drawn from the questions below, but will be based on the reading notes you bring to class.
Read the guidelines for doing a RAID at http://www.marthabianco.com/Courses/Cities/RAID.html
Be prepared to be randomly selected to lead and/or actively
participate in discussion about any one of the questions
during your mentor session.
As for main session, the practice RAIDs will be led by the E-G people
who are leading the current panels. DO NOT WORRY: this is practice.
I find that students really like the RAIDs.
In the "real" RAIDs (those in mentor sessions), if you are a leader
, you will be graded on how prepared you were to
the discussion, how well you succinctly
presented your responses
and arguments, how professionally
you handled the process of
facilitating group discussion, and your overall response
If you are a participant
, you will be graded on how attentive
you were during the leader's initial presentation, how
well (extent of preparedness
, ability to respond, etc.) you engaged in
dialogue about the topic after the leader finished, how professionally
you participated in discussion (not taking up too much time or
interrupting), and your overall grasp
of the subject matter.
Each student will also be graded on the written RAID
response: MLA format, content, thoughtfulness, professionalism, etc.
Please include each question (you can just copy and paste from here) or
a short (paraphrased) version
. Your discussion points for each question
should not be much longer than one page
(per question). Remember a Works Cited page and MLA format if
you paraphrase, cite, or refer to material to substantiate your
Though not required, it is usually best to type up your RAID as
discussion points or an outline, rather than in narrative text format.
Having just begun our ethnography, you may
be feeling unsure about what to focus on. Review Ch. 3 ("Posing
the Question") in Phillips to address the following with respect to
your neighborhood cluster:
A. Construct at least two research questions or hypotheses that relate specifically to your neighborhood(s). For example:
- Why is the minority population so high in these neighborhoods? (research question)
- The percentage of minority population is positively correlated
with the percentage of residents below the poverty level, the percent
who qualify for free lunches, and the percent who rent (rather than
own) their homes. (hypothesis)
- How does neighborhood design and architecture reflect residents' sense of community? (research question)
- People who live in neighborhoods with tree-lined "walkable"
sidewalks, on-street parking, houses with shallow setbacks (not too far
from the sidewalk) and porches have a stronger sense of community
than people who live in neighborhoods without these characteristics.
B. Keep in mind the issues listed
on p. 74 in Phillips under "What Questions to Ask" and discuss the
following with respect to the ethnography:
- How might your own values and biases affect what you choose to observe and how you choose to interpret any findings?
- What sorts of questions regarding "community" seem to you to be
underexamined, and how might you address some of those in your research?
- So what? Are you going to be looking at something that
will be interesting and meaningful? (I once had a student do a report
that consisted of counting trucks that crossed a bridge; with some
context, that could have been interesting, but as it was -- not so much
Most of us have at
least two different national/ethnic/racial backgrounds. For
example, I am half Italian and half French. However, I clearly
identify most strongly with my Italian side. I know the villages
in both Italy and France where my family comes from. In France,
we come from Réallon, which is in the Alsace region in Southern
France. In Italy, we come from a town called Guardia Lombardi,
which is in the province of Avellino in the Campania region of Southern
Speak with your relatives, particularly those with whose
national/ethnic/racial background you identify the most strongly.
Try to narrow down as far as you can the city, town, or village
from which that side of your family comes. For the purposes of this exercise, we will refer to this as your home town.
If you absolutely cannot find out the name of your historical, familial home town, then you can use one of the following:
- your best guess as to the place you were adopted from
- your best guess as to the place your people, if slaves, came from (probably Western Africa)
- your best guess as to the place your ancestors first settled here in the U.S.
Using Internet resources, try to find out the following
information about that location. I will use Guardia Lombardi as
- Where, exactly, is your home town?
- I used http://www.multimap.com to find out where Guardia Lombardi is.
- I downloaded and installed GoogleEarth from http://earth.google.com/ to get a satellite image of the town. This resulted in something that is just too cool to describe.
If you do this, be sure to play with the zoom and tilt devices.
(Your computer will probably need a pretty fast processor in
order for this to work.)
- You can print out an image.
Discuss your experience in doing this Exercise No. II (talking
with your relatives, finding out things you may not have known about
your past and your people, etc.)
Some students already have a very good grasp of their background.
Some religious denominations, for example, place a special value
on geneology. So, you may already have done this. Even so, see
what else you can get from this exercise.
. Pick one
of the following concepts we've been discussing or reading about and discuss aspects about it that you
find the most interesting
- competing theories of urbanization (Childe, Jacob, Mumford)
- Sjoberg's preindustrial-industrial classification
- walking cities versus streetcar suburbs
- Gemeinschaft-Gesellschaft continuum
- Louis Wirth's idea regarding "urbanism as a way of life" -- that
large size, high density, and heterogeneity -- combine in an urban
setting in such a way as to have dramatic results
Check out this news story: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060421/ap_on_re_us/foiled_plot
What aspects of this story do you find the most interesting with
respect to any topic related to our course (either that we've covered
or that we will