Special Assignment 3: Phase 1 of Sociological Research Paper
Prompt: Julian McDonald, a liberal congressman from California, intends to propose a law that will abolish marriage as a legal practice. In his book titled The Abolition of Marriage he proposes that marriage as a legal contract should be all-together abolished, and if couples seek to practice this traditional custom it should be a non-legal ceremonial, but only religious-based, act.
“Three major family trends imply that marriage has lost its value in society and for today’s culture,” says McDonald in a 2005 CNN interview. These three trends that congressman McDonald reveals are (1) high divorce rates, (2) high rates of cohabitation, and (3) rates of children born out of wedlock. According to McDonald,”high divorce rates demonstrate how little faith couples have in marriage by not seeking lifetime (long-term) commitment to the spouse.” McDonald bashes marriage by saying, “cohabitation is what couples nowadays prefer and its the intelligent way for people to get to know each other, even before opting for marriage.” McDonald continues bashing marriage when making the infamous comment, “since many children are born out-of-wedlock, they are legitimate (by law) bastards, so why marry?”
As you know, I have given you the template to writing your research paper (look at the template for the inclusion of the APA sections located in this week), but I have also provided the actual research paper page (located on week 5). However, at this time, I need to ensure that you are headed in the right direction, and so for this first phase I will furnish right orientation to initiate your research. For this first phase, I need you to have the following components to this paper in order to the above prompt:
I. Your position to McDonald’s proposition:
Either you agree or disagree to abolishing marriage as McDonald’s proposes, but with your established position you are to give an explanation of why you agree or disagree.
II. Select a sociological perspective:
Select a perspective (functionalism, conflict theory/feminism, interactionism) that BEST defends your position to McDonald’s proposition. There are several chapters (slides) that reconcile with the family and marriage topic. In fact, I have developed SLIDE 27 in Chapter 10 as a resource that covers most of the principles per each of these paradigms. You may utilize these principles, but remember that my notes do not count as research references, but should only help you with the perspective component. You still have to provide three references.
III. Professional research references:
As stated already, you have to research for three professional references. These may be books, professional online sources (NO WIKIPEDIA PLEASE), professional journals, articles, etc. The criteria for these references should involve one of the two (or both) of the following requirements: (1) best defends or supports your position and/or (2) solidifies or strengthens the same perspective you are using as foundation to your position.
Grading Criteria: The completion of all three elements of the research paper. Please use a question-answer format.
Point Breakdown: Each completed part will receive 5 points, for a total of 15 points. The totality of 15 points will be awarded if the assignment is completed per the instructions given. Best grades will be given if the assignment is written thorough and concise. It is to the professor’s discretion to deduct points if student does not abide by the minimum requirements (word count, clarity of explanation, etc.).