Assignment 1: Ethnic Identity Essay
For this assignment you are to write a 3-1/2 to 4-page essay that answers one simple question: What is the ethnic label that you choose for yourself and why? Many ethnicities in the US have multiple labels ascribed to them. As such, here is your chance to inform the reader about how you see yourself and for you to think about what that label says about you. For example, are you Asian or Chinese American, Black or African American? Chicana/o/x, Hispanic, Mexican American, or Latina/o/x, White or Euroamerican? or something else?
The label you choose tells others a lot about how you view yourself, your ethnicity, where you see your place in US society, and your political orientation. Some people say they do not want to be labeled and would prefer to be seen as simply an American or as a person. Regrettably, society places labels on everyone, whether we want it or not. Additionally, you may identify as one label and others may categorize you as something else. What does this reality say about human nature? About power dynamics in the US? Do not answer these last two questions; they are merely food for thought.
Your essay must be in either Calibri (11 point font) or Times New Roman (12 point font). It needs no outside references. However, if you use any they must be cited in APA, Chicago, or MLA format. However, you do need to tell the reader what your label means to you by writing a short one to two sentence long definition. For this assignment, you must avoid using contractions, slang, and colloquial language. As such, your essay will have an academic tone but will be more approachable than traditional social science or rhetoric.
Most importantly, there is NO right or wrong way to answer this essay question. So long as your argument is logically sound and you are NOT offensive against other ethnic identities, you can earn a good grade.