Writing in Depth: Readings in Contemporary Culture / Edition 1

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This new brief, thematic reader helps students add depth and interest to their writing by showing them how to “transend” the personal essay to produce more thoughtful, scholarly papers.

The readings in each chapter move from personal to professional to academic essays, engaging students in deeper levels of inquiry and encouraging their own writing of argumentative, and documented essays. Centered around compelling contemporary themes, each chapter begins with works drawn from popular magazines like Glamour, Harpers, and online publications such as Salon followed by selections drawn from sources like Discover and Scientific American that provide more detailed information, alternate perspectives, and research. The final reading in each chapter comes from scholarly or near-scholarly writing that provides direction for student research. Visuals in each chapter allow students to analyze the persuasive power of images and their role in supporting and directing contemporary culture.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780321094209
  • Publisher: Longman
  • Publication date: 1/28/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 390
  • Product dimensions: 5.44 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Table of Contents


Reading, Researching, and Writing.


1. What We Remember, What We Forget: Looking at Our Childhoods.

Visual: Photograph from The Spirit of Family.

Personal Writing: Judith Viorst, “He Took Care of His Family.”

Personal Writing: Edwidge Danticat, “Westbury Court.”

Professional Writing, Geoffrey Canada, “Pain.”

Academic Writing: Uric Neisser, “Self-Narratives: True and False.”

2. Who We Are: Negotiating Difference.

Visual: Susan Straight, “Family.”

Personal Writing: Susan Straight, “One Heart, Different Hands.”

Personal Writing: Naomi Shihab Nye, “Linked.”

Professional Writing: Mary Pipher, “Teenagers: Mohammed Meets Madonna.”

Academic Writing: Leo R. Chavez, “Go Back Where You Came From.”

3. How We See Ourselves: Body Images.

Visual: Chris Rainier, “The Tribe.”

Personal Writing: Kelly McCarthy, “Too Pumped.”

Professional Writing: Brad Lemley, “Isn't She Beautiful?”


4. Super-Size It: Fast Food and American Life.

Visual: “McDonald's Corporate Social Responsibility,” Web page.

Personal Writing: Alice Waters, “Happy Meals.”

Personal Writing: Jacques Coulardeau, “A Good but Biased Beginning.”

Professional Writing: Eric Schlosser, “The Bitter Truth About Fast Food.”

Academic Writing: Robin Leidner, “McDonalds: Subservience and Skill.”

5. No Time for a Break: Where We Work, Why We Work.

Visual: National Association of Women in Construction, Illustration from Homepage.

Personal Writing: Paul W. Schenk, “Tools for Life.”

Professional Writing: Michael Kamber, “Toil and Temptation.”

Professional Writing: Barbara Ehrenreich, “Evaluation.”

Academic Writing: Richard Florida, “The Rise of the Creative Class.”

6. Sweet Dreams Are (Not) Made of This: Who Needs Sleep?

Visual: “Representing Sleep Research Visually.”

Personal Writing: Stacey Delicat, “Spotlight On: Sleep Deprivation.”

Professional Writing: Douglas Martin, “Rising, Not Shining.”

Academic Writing: Stanley J. Coren, “The Clocks Within Us.”


7. Roots and Reach: Hip Hop in Contemporary Culture.

Visual: Album Cover and CD Illustration, 50 Cent, Get Rich or Die Tryin'.

Personal Writing: Danyel Smith, “Tupac Shakur.”

Professional Writing: “The Cross.”

Academic Writing: Bakari Kitwana, “The New Black Youth Culture: The Emergence of the Hip-Hop Generation.”

8. Families We Choose.

Visual: “The Family Farm Ltd..”

Personal Writing: Jesse Green, “Orbiting the Son.”

Professional Writing: Evan Eisenberg, “The Adoption Paradox.”

Academic Writing: Sarah Blaffer Hrdy, “The Appeal of Babies.”

9. Animal Planet: Pets and Animal Intelligence.

Visual: Eadweard Muybridge, “Horse in Motion.”

Personal Writing: Kristin von Kreisler, “Courage.”

Professional Writing, Stephen Budiansky, “The Character of Cats.”

Academic Writing, Eugene Linden, “The Parrot's Lament.”

10. Visuals, Violence, and Values.

Visual: PowerPuff Girls Poster.

Personal Writing: Adele Horin, “Wham! Pow! Cartoon Violence and the Kids.”

Professional Writing: Gina Kolata, “A Study Finds More Links Between TV and Violence.”

Academic Writing, “National Television Violence Study: Executive Summary.”

Student Essays.

Bridget Schulz, “Grandmother's America.”

Adele Amoroso, “Nick Then, Nick Now.”

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