Research Project: Reading / Analyzing / Researching / Writing BACKGROUND:
In The Hidden Brain: How Our Unconscious Minds Elect Presidents, Control Markets, Wage Wars, and Save our Lives, Shankar Vedantam explores the influence our “Hidden Brain” has on how we perceive, understand and act in our cultural, social, and political environments. He proposes that our unconscious mind, not our conscious reasoning, is often the key driver in our decision making and actions.
- Select one of the issues Shankar Vendantam writes about in a chapter of the The Hidden Brain.
- Conduct your own research about the topic Vedantam explores to develop a deeper understanding of the issues/topics.
- Use the concept of the “hidden brain” as a lens to explore the issue.
Your Reading/Research Goals Your Writing Goals:
You will write three Annotated Bibliography Entries.
You will write an introduction to your Annotated Bibliography Entries. In this ➢ ➢ ➢ introduction, you will do the following: describe background information on the issue, explain why it is significant, and present your perspective on this topic/issue. As you begin, use the Journalist’s Questions to help you define your topic: “Who, What, When, Where, Why and How” ➢ What is the topic about? ➢ Why does your topic represent a significant social, political, and/or economic issue? ➢ Who/what plays a major (and minor) role in the issue? ➢ How has your topic impacted your community/society/country? ➢ What should you learn about it? ➢ What do people think about this issue (what are the various opinions and perspectives)? ➢ When did the consequences of the issue begin? Why? ➢ What is currently being done about the issue? What should be done differently? introduction, you will do the following: describe background information on the issue, explain why it is significant, and present your perspective on this topic/issue. As you begin, use the Journalist’s Questions to help you define your topic: “Who, What, When, Where, Why and How” ➢ What is the topic about? ➢ Why does your topic represent a significant social, political, and/or economic issue? ➢ Who/what plays a major (and minor) role in the issue? ➢ How has your topic impacted your community/society/country? ➢ What should you learn about it? ➢ What do people think about this issue (what are the various opinions and perspectives)? ➢ When did the consequences of the issue begin? Why? ➢ What is currently being done about the issue? What should be done differently?
To get started To write an annotated bibliography here are the steps:
• Choose your sources – Before writing your annotated bibliography, you must choose your sources. This involves doing research much like for any other project. Locate records to materials that may apply to your topic.
• Review the items – Then review the actual items and choose those that provide a wide variety of perspectives on your topic. Article abstracts are helpful in this process.
• Write the citation and annotation – When writing your annotation, the complete citation should always come first and the annotation follows.
Use MLA citation for your citation. You will want to include the following: o The kind of resource (article, essay, documentary etc…) o A summary of its content o Information about the author(s) o Its relevance to the topic o Any special or unique features about the material o The strengths, weaknesses or biases in the material Directions For Creating An Annotated BIBLIOGRAPHY For your Final Project you will create THREE Annotated Bibliography Entries Links to an external site. of about 200-250 words each. 1) Find at least two articles about the topic related to the topic explored in the chapter you choose from The Hidden Brain. Check those Library links to help you locate articles and resources in the Skyline Library Database: Links to an external site. Academic One File, EBSCO HOST, and CQ Researcher are all good Databases to use 2) Read and annotate these resources to find out what they are about. Consider whether they will be useful for your final writing assignment which will explore the topic. 3) For TWO of the useful resources you find create TWO Annotated Bibliography Entries. 4) Create a THIRD entry for the chapter from The Hidden Brain you read. Directions: Take some time to scan and preview few of the chapters from the Hidden Brain. Then choose one that seems to be the most interesting for you. Complete the worksheet below. Then, eventually begin reading and taking notes on this chapter. Chapter 5 Chapter Number and Title:
1. Write down the title of the chapter. What does the title of the chapter indicate? What do you think the topic of the chapter will be? Chapter 5- The Invisible Current: Gender, Privilege, and the Hidden Brain
2. Read the Iirst paragraph or two of the chapter. What is the author talking about – many times he begins with stories about people; what is the story about? What can you understand about not just the example but also the content and topic of the chapter? What concepts and ideas will the author discuss in the chapter?
3. Read a few paragraphs in the beginning, the middle and near the end of this chapter. Can you understand what the topic is a little more? How do you think it connects to the larger topic of unconscious bias or the “hidden brain” in the book? What connections to our world can you make to the information in the chapter?
4. Read the last paragraph and summarize the information below.
5. Do you have an interest in or connection to this chapter? Explain why your do or do not have interest as thoroughly as you can.
I am a woman in my 40’s . I have struggled throughout my life with what I now consider hidden bias. I have an open mind and try to allow others to deIine themselves without being judged unfairly. I have personally seen the devastation of many hidden biases being played out. I now have a new lens to focus through which can transcend the hidden pathways into a more enlightened state.
English 105 ~ Introduction The Hidden Brain The author explains that Mahzarin Banaji studies unconscious prejudices, which Vedantam describes as “subtle cognitive errors that lay beneath the rim of awareness”. Paraphrase this definition. Why is the presence of these “unconscious prejudices” so disturbing? Vedantam mentions several reasons, what are they? Vedantam asks a question, “If unconscious forces could influence us when we made swift judgments about other people, could these forces influences us all the time?” What did his initial research indicate (p. 3-4)? Vedantam asserts that people believe that unconscious bias is the same as prejudice or preference, yet as he discovered, it is not the same (p. 4)? Humans have long speculated about the unconscious mind, but until recently we haven’t been able to verify its power. What is different about the research that Vedantam found? What did he discover about why unconscious bias is so hard to find and reveal? What is it about our human desire to understand human behavior that prevents us from understanding and embracing the power of unconsciousness bias (p. 4-5)? Vedantam asserts that our previous assumptions and theories about human behavior are essentially wrong. Explain what he says was our wrong way of thinking about our previous assumptions(p. 5). On p. 6, Vedantam lays out why the new research about how we make decisions and how our brains work is significant not just for individuals but for societies across the globe. What major elements today’s world make hidden biases (our hidden brains) so much more dangerous than before? How does he describe the term “hidden brain”? At the very end of the Introduction Shankar Vedantam offers a definition of what an “extraordinary” person is. Summarize his definition. How could the new thinking about how our brain works help all of us become “extraordinary” people?