This Reaction Paper is an opportunity to further examine race and ethnicity using Ted Talks. It will also encourage you to draw personal connections to racial/ethnic issues through your sociological imaginations.

Write your papers using one-inch margins, double-spaced, and 12-point font. The entire paper should be at least 4-5 pages in length (it may be even longer). REMEMBER TO UPLOAD YOUR PAPER AS A WORD DOCUMENT ONLY! Make sure to complete all steps of this assignment:

Step I:

This first step involves you visiting a website that houses ten Ted Talks focused on race in America. Click on the link to visit the following website: (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

Once you are on the website, look through all ten talks and choose one to focus on for this assignment. There is a range of topics from which you can choose, and you may find yourself watching more than one in order to make a choice. Once you have chosen your talk, proceed to Step II.

Step II:

This step involves you watching the entire Ted Talk. As you watch, pay attention to who is giving the talk, the talk’s overall goal(s), what the main points are of the talk, how it relates to our overall course, how it relates to sociology, what key points are involved in the talk, what is the “take home message,” and what your overall impression is of the speaker and the talk. Also, pay attention to how it personally resonates with you. Once you have finished watching it, proceed to Step III.

Step III:

This step involves you writing in detail about the Ted Talk you just watched. Address the following questions. Yes, you may number your responses:

  1. Describe the talk in terms of its title and its speaker. Where was the talk given and how long is it?
  2. Why did you select to watch this particular talk? How did it personally appeal to you?
  3. Describe in detail the overall talk. Please do not copy the description from the website. Use your own words. What is the focus, main argument, or key social issue that it attempts to address? Does it focus on the lives of certain people, a certain social event, a controversial social issue/problem, or some sort of impactful social change related to race and ethnicity? Discuss the talk in a few lengthy paragraphs.
  4. Choose one memorable moment from the talk. Describe why the moment stood out to you and why it is particularly memorable (this may require you to provide a little more information from the talk in order to set up the moment in a way that is understandable to someone who has not seen it!).
  5. Refer to the corresponding chapter in our class textbook on race/ethnicity (Chapter 10) and find TWO connections between the textbook content (maybe it’s a term or a concept, or maybe it is a person, general topic of discussion, or image) and the talk you watched. Make sure to state what the two connections are from the book (include the page number behind it in your paper). For example, you may write, “The textbook discusses how stereotypes about certain racial groups are an issue (p.804), and the talk focuses on how racial injustices are fueled by stereotypes.” The goal of this question is to get you to connect the book to what TED Talk you watched!
  6. What is your overall impression of the TED Talk? What was it like watching it (bored, excited, curious)? What criticisms do you have, or what didn’t you like/agree with? Would you recommend this TED Talk to someone else? Why or why not?

Step IV:

This final step involves you creating FIVE discussion questions based on the TED talk (as if you were the professor!). Number each of your questions, and think about asking questions on key aspects, important moments, or main points of the talk. What questions can you ask that will hold viewers accountable for the information, get them to think critically, and also apply their sociological imaginations regarding race and ethnicity?

For example, a discussion question might look like this: “In the first few moments of the talk, Verna Myers states that we should overcome our biases regarding race. What are some specific strategies to overcome bias about race at College?

In writing your discussion questions, remember to be specific and clear!

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