COM 310 Family Communication

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Unit One

Chapters 1, 2 and 3

RAT Test over Chapters 1, 2 and 3

In-class individual assignment: Since the American family does not exist, what messages do we receive about what the American family is supposed to be?  Consider a “message” about the American family – for instance: Watch a television show/movie or read a book/story about a family in America: What does the message you reviewed say about families?  What is the membership? What are the roles of those members?  What are the functions of a family?  What are the goals of a family?  What is the communication like in a family (i.e., who talks to whom, about what, in what manner?) Write a 1-2 page paper using concepts from Chapters 1-3. Cite the text when you use it, please.  Due Monday, 23rd.

Mini-project: Find two different kinds of families. They may be different from each other in any significant way: very different sizes, structures (multi-generational, single-parent etc.), socio-economic levels, cultures, races, ages of parents/children, etc. They may be real families (your own, relatives, friends, neighbors) or fictional (from movies, TV, books). Analyze these families either from a systems, a social constructionist, dialectic, or narrative theory perspective. Given that perspective,what are the similarities and differences that you found in these families? What do you think created the similiarities/differences?

Video alternative: Consider recording your two families to add images to your analysis - may do the entire thing as a mini-documentary and present it in class.

Can use discussion forums in Blackboard to talk about these between classes.

Blog analysis: For the family you have chosen for analysis this semester, analyze cohesion, adaptability, root metaphor, boundaries, and themes for your family. See my example in Blackboard.