Ethnographic Exercise 1: Language

Ethnographic Exercise 1: Language


In the chapter dealing with language, we’ve discussed a variety ways in which we use language and communication styles that differ according to microcultural differences. These can be based on sex or gender, on socioeconomic class, on occupation, on ethnicity, on age, or any number of other factors. Within a group, these communication styles are usually well understood, but when interacting with someone from a *different* group, the different communication styles can create misunderstandings. 


What I want you to do for this exercise is to think about some communication situations that you’ve experienced that demonstrate some of these differences. You might discuss how you use a different communication style at home as opposed to at work. You might describe an example of "code-switching" that you observed, overheard, or participated in. You might consider how your expectations of how someone should speak (based on their age, sex, gender, or clothing) were not met when you encountered their actual speaking style. You could discuss a situation in which you were faced with a specialty communication (such as an occupational or other microcultural jargon) that may have been intended to clarify the message but actually ended up confusing it. Remember- this isn’t a research assignment, I want you to describe something from your own experience.


Your submission should be about 750 words.  A bit over or under isn’t a huge issue, but aim for around 750. Make sure your page is double-spaced, with 1" margins. Use a standard 10 or 12 point font. Your page should be left-justified,  with the first line of each paragraph indented the standard 5 spaces (or 1/2 inch). Make sure you proofread your work, and check that your spelling, grammar, and vocabulary reflect a college level of writing. It should be "Saved as" or "Exported As" a PDF document. Submit it to the assignment inbox on Canvas. Do NOT email it directly to me. I can’t grade it unless it’s in Canvas. Check the originality report after you’ve submitted it. In an assignment of this sort, your "similarity index" should be under 10%. 


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