For your final paper, you will need to use at least 2 course concepts or readings, as well as 2 outside, additional sources, to apply the ideas from our class to some aspect of
social life. Outside sources must be sociological and academic, and must add something to your analysis rather than just repeat what we have learned in class.
Your paper must have a discernable beginning, middle and end, and be crafted around a clear and interesting thesis. Various aspects of the thesis should be developed throughout the body of the essay. In your conclusion, describe how your essay expands, develops or
extends the set of social psychological concepts you employ.
Your paper should be 5-7 pages in length. All sources must be cited within the text (parenthetical notation, in which you reference the author’s last name and the year), and
listed in a bibliography (APA style). For all of these options, you can work alone, with a partner, or in a group of 3.
All papers will be graded on the following criteria
– Organization, clarity and sophistication of argument
– Demonstrated understanding and insightful application of course readings and concepts
– Appropriateness and integration of outside readings and original data
– Grammar, writing style and proper citations
Option 1: Emotions in politics
How do emotions affect our political lives? Compare and contrast the use of emotions by various candidates in the 2020 presidential campaign, or in any political events or
controversies. Craft an argument about the role emotions played in the political event in question, and the various emotional work, labor and management employed by the
This assignment will have 4 steps:
1. Reread all of the class material on emotion work and find at least two recent academic sources (within the last 10 years) that discuss emotions and politics.
2. From this literature, craft a hypothesis of how emotions have worked during the 2020 political campaign.
3. Create a data set to test your hypothesis. You may choose to use the presidential and vice presidential debates, extended interviews and town halls with the two candidates, or something like this LA Times list of political ads. Whatever you choose, justify why this is an appropriate and systematic way to measure your hypothesis. You should refer to these sources in addition to your academic sources.
4. Conclude by addressing the question of what politics teaches us about the importance of emotion work, labor and management in social life.
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