Sunday, August 25, 2013

11 Untranslatable Words From Other Cultures: An Infographic

The original version of this topic was posted here at Daily Infographic.  I love language, it phonemes and morphemes, it grammar and syntax.  Puns are a huge part of my life.  But this infographic does what one of my favorite books does, take cool words from other tongues that do not have English correlates.  Just fun words that can tell us about the values of various cultures.

The Teaching High School Sociology web site

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Everyday Sexism

In the recent past, I've discovered a Twitter feed with the handle, "@EverydaySexism."  The feed
is fascinating for me as a male because I had no idea the kind of inappropriate and crappy behavior women have had to deal with.

I recommend checking out the sites and sharing responses with your students to get their interpretations.  Perhaps a pre-brief may be necessary as some of the content is quite graphic and the ideas may help long-held-in frustrations boil to the surface in class.  Still very worthwhile.

When it comes to giving young women a voice, we as sociology teachers must assist.  We also have an obligation to guide our young men into appropriate behavior.

The Teaching High School Sociology web site

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Rape Culture Part 2

This link was shared with me about the CNN coverage of the rape case in Ohio.  I posted my thoughts above the link from

This is part of the rape culture I was speaking about earlier. The boys' lives are ruined, yes. They made choices. What about the young woman whose life was forever altered because our society says it's ok to rape a drunk girl? She got drunk--perhaps deserved a hangover, not being raped. Avoiding expletives while typing--this really angers me.
From the Huffington Post:

CNN's Steubenville Coverage Focuses On Effect Rape Trial Will Have On Rapists, Not Victim

The Teaching High School Sociology web site

Rape Culture and a Teaching Opportunity

Earlier today, I awaited the news of the verdict of the trial of the two Steubenville, Ohio boys accused of committing sexual assault on the unconscious 16-year-old female classmate.  I then posted a series of links and comments on my Twitter and Facebook accounts.  This problem has many facets, from male entitlement, to distorted definitions of masculinity and femininity, irrational expectations related to alcohol and behavior, a culture that objectifies and denigrates women, and many more issues.

I also posted this picture I found online--it received a number of likes and comments:

My FB friends also had these items to say:

  • And being a high school football star or coach in a tight-knit community does not make you above common human decency or the law.
  • Too bad they got away with only being charged as juveniles.
  • I quit a "frat" that was like this. Right there in Ohio. It was so filthy and objectified the ladies so much. I have NEVER seen anything like it before or since. And I'm not Mr. Straight Arrow. Even today I like to party sometimes. It was hhhhHORRIBLE. This kind of stuff should be SNUFFED OUT FOR EVVVER!
  • Reading that was so sad. I hope everyone involved (coach included) has to face a fitting consequence. Also, where were any adults during this? There's alcohol, driving around (with or without alcohol?), a drunk girl that no one seems to account for until the next day... Sad.
  • Very true- it's not an issue about women or men, it's an issue within our society and culture that needs to be changed. I think because it's such a "bad" topic though, it's only gonna get pushed aside because people don't want to admit that it is something that is wrong within our culture (something wrong with us?? Never!). More awareness is a good start.
  • Chuck- do K-12 programs ever address this? I'm not saying play parents...but currently K-12 have programs about drinking and driving, drugs, etc. Seems to be a good way to address some problems in a rape culture.
  • I never heard of positive masculinity till now, but found this:

    Most of what I read just now seems good..but all this "must provide" "must protect" stuff seems a bit outdat
    ed. Can't a mother provide and/or protect? I mean yes I can do more physical damage, but that's not the only protection. 

    As to providing...I'm in that boat now. But I know other couples the women make more money. I don't think there's any shame to a stay at home dad either. If a man gets his career sidetracked by the economy or chooses to stay at home because he has a contractor kind of job, or wife makes more money, etc.

    I do wish this article in the "shared activities" would have listed another example than sports. We've put that one way to high on a golden pedestal in this nation, especially with k-12.
      Kiselica and Englar-Carlson look at how Positive Psychology can be used to support troubled men and boys. They discuss a strengths-based approach known as Positive Masculinity. As the mother of a rapidly-growing boy (aged 8, going on 18), I was very interested to come across the Positive Masculi...

  • And we still have a ways to go. I was sickened by the recent exchange on Sean Hannity in which a woman (who survived a rape) debated Hannity about guns and rape. She advocated "teach boys not to rape" over carrying a firearm.
    The reaction of the Hannity faithful was disgusting.
    Woman Receives Rape Threats After Telling Hannity Guns Won't Prevent Rape: Teaching men is the way to prevent rape, she said on the show, Democratic strategist Zerlina Maxwell, herself a rape survivor, appeared on Sean Hannity's show to talk about rape. A...

  • Is it a rape culture or a sexual objectification culture we have? Or both? There are few of us men who actually rape women, but many of us look at them and treat them as sexual objects through our looks, comments, attention, and obsession with porn. This is not at all to minimize the vileness of rape, but to say as men, I believe we need to stand against much more than just rape.

There were many more comments, but this is a good representation.  Now if we all can have these conversations in our classrooms, yes, even at the high school level, it would help being awareness to what is going on outside our classes.

So these are some issues that need to be out there and confronted in our classrooms.  I've always been fortunate enough to teach in schools that allow me to ask my students questions.  I doubt that everyone could do this, but it is worth a shot.  I will endeavor to follow up on this issue with more resources.

The Teaching High School Sociology web site

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Teaching Sociology Conference on April 5, 2013

I received the following email via the ASA listserv. For those who may have missed it, here is a wonderful announcement.  I must confess a certain affinity to the planners and location as I taught in Indiana for 13 years and attended Valparaiso University for my undergraduate work.  I only wish I could attend this wonderful opportunity.

The email came with a registration form which can be found on this page:

For those who go, the rest of us would love to hear what you gained from the experience.


Dear Social Studies/Sociology Teacher:

I invite you to participate in a workshop on teaching sociology in high school.  The workshop is sponsored by the North Central Sociological Association (NCSA), the American Sociological Association’s Section on Teaching and Learning, the Indiana Council for the Social Studies, and the Valparaiso University Department of Sociology and Criminology in Indiana. The NCSA has offered this workshop almost every year since 1991, and its design and content have been shaped by feedback from previous participants.  It includes discussion of important curricular and pedagogical issues high school teachers face.  Participants are introduced to the services of the Teaching Resources Center at the American Sociological Association and are given opportunities to network with other high school sociology teachers and professors of college level courses. You will leave the room with dozens of teaching strategies for your sociology course, but many of them are applicable to courses on government, history, or psychology as well.

The workshop is scheduled for Friday, April 5th, at the Crowne Plaza in Historic Union Station in Indianapolis, IN.  It will begin at 8:30 AM and conclude by 3:30 PM. Registration is $100 for those who pre-register by March 22nd or $125 at the door.  Registration includes lunch, provides you with several ready-to-go lessons and enables you to participate in the larger sociology conference.  A certificate for earning continuing education credits (variously named in each of the adjacent states) will be available, though application but must be initiated through your own school system if you want continuing education credits.

Enclosed you will find a description of the workshop, a registration form, and a tentative workshop agenda.

After the workshop, you are invited to participate in the rest of the annual meeting events, which run through Saturday evening.  There are both presentations of research findings by sociologists from across the midwest and sessions on various aspects of teaching sociology.

We hope to hear from you!  If you do not teach sociology yourself, please pass these materials on to a colleague who does.  Thanks!

Lissa J. Yogan, Ph.D. Co-Organizer                                           Debra Swanson, Ph.D.  Co- Organizer
Associate Professor of Sociology, Valparaiso University          Professor of Sociology, Hope College
Contact:  219/ 464-6998                  Contact:  616/395-7951

The Teaching High School Sociology web site

Monday, February 4, 2013

Bullying as a Rational Choice

Over the weekend I was reading through my Facebook feed--a title really jumped out at me: "Bullying: A Rational Choice."  Having a friend who teaches economics, I hear the term "rational choice" quite a bit, as that is apparently how economists view choices people make for their economic models.

Anyway, I read through the blog post and it stunned me.  There is a compelling argument that is made about the origins of bullying and how it represents a social bonding experience related to conformity (increasing oxytocin), in-groups and out-groups.  Fascinating.  I would imagine that sharing such an article with your kids would yield some insights as well.  There are some amazing sociological connections in relation to groups and group dynamics in the article.

BrainBlogger Home Page:

Bullying Post:

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Social Isolation-One Family's Story

You have a belief system and way of life that makes you distrust outsiders due to a political purge.  You live a harsh life in the forest and scavenge daily to feed yourself and your family of 5.  Without hunting or building equipment, you figure out how to create a "home" and hunt barefoot in the snow but mostly eat grasses, berries and bark.  The only people you've seen for 40 years are your family members.  How do you react to strangers and the new innovations they bring?  Would you embrace or reject the things and ideas they brought?

A student sent me a link to this article recently.  It's from Smithsonian Magazine about a family in remote Russia that was so far removed from society for over 40 years that they were not even aware that World War II had occurred.  I will not attempt to do the story justice here, just check out the article.  There is also a link to a Russian documentary about their lives at the end of the article.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

The Teaching High School Sociology web site

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

History of Anti-Semitism

I received an email today from Teaching Tolerance offering a new resource.  Below is the text from the message.  Prejudice and discrimination are two major topics in my sociology course.  One of the best ways to deal with the issue with our students is to acknowledge the historical atrocities that have occurred as well as current issues and give students a lens through which to view these events and incidents.  If this resource is as good as the previous ones from TT, it will be excellent.

In recent years, human rights organizations and government agencies have documented a surge in anti-Jewish rhetoric and acts of violence in countries around the world. A Convenient Hatred: The History of Antisemitism—the newest book by Facing History and Ourselves—reveals the stereotypes that lie at the heart of this hatred.  

Teaching Tolerance is pleased to partner with Facing History and Ourselves to offer A Convenient Hatred to you free of charge. Members of the Teaching Tolerance community may order one copy of A Convenient Hatred at no cost!  

In addition, you are invited to attend Facing History's free online workshopA Convenient Hatred from March 15-25. The workshop will give educators the opportunity to engage in conversation about how to effectively teach the history of anti-Semitism by addressing the impact of stereotypes. 

Don't wait to order your copy of A Convenient Hatred—the offer ends February 28, 2013! 

The Teaching High School Sociology web site