ERIC Number: ED336756
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Mar
Searching for Objectivity and Prejudice in Writing about AIDS.
Luboff, Gerald F.
Three writing assignments not only gave students the opportunity to practice various rhetorical approaches in the assignments, but also provided students a learning opportunity and a chance to explore their own attitudes towards the problems and issues raised by the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) crisis. The first assignment involved the exploration of misconceptions regarding AIDS, and required research and the use of the comparative rhetorical approach in a 500-word theme. Students learned that knowledge about the disease eliminated both prejudices and misconceptions. The second assignment involved writing about any controversial aspect of the AIDS crisis. Students were required to incorporate into their paper 5 words from a list of 18 words suggesting an emotional response. The words most frequently used were "disease,""victim," and "prevention," yet none were used in association with prejudicial attitudes. The final assignment was a reaction paper to the film, "Imagine This," an 18-minute documentary interviewing college students infected with the HIV virus. Immediately after viewing the film, students wrote a two-pronged paper. In the majority of cases, students' initial reaction was anger, followed by compassion--nevertheless, some prejudices did come out. (Instructions for the reaction paper and the list of 18 words are attached.) (SR)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (42nd, Boston, MA, March 21-23, 1991).