Final Reflection Paper – Memorial/Museum Visit Worth
150 points | Due Monday, May 1st by 11:59pm
Paper Requirements (Review Grading Rubric)
The paper must include a photo of you outside the center. The memorial or museum must also be visible in the photo. All photos are required to be taken in a respectful manner. Papers without a photo will not be accepted for a grade and will earn a zero. No exceptions will be considered.
The paper must be formatted in APA style. The paper must be double-spaced, 12-point Times New Roman font, and have 1-inch margins. You are not required to have either a title or a reference page.
The paper must have at least 750 words but no more than 1500 words.
The vast majority of the information included in the paper must be paraphrased from the text or documentary in your own words. Any material copied from the text must be in proper quoted format per APA style.
o Papers with more than 10% of the word count consisting of quoted material will automatically receive a 17-point grade deduction.
o Any plagiarism will result in a zero for the paper and will be officially reported. It is the student’s responsibility to double-check this before the deadline
Required Sections (Paper must include the following sections):
• Section 1: Describe your initial reactions while visiting the memorial/museum. Discuss three people you learned about while at the memorial/museum. Why were they highlighted in the memorial/museum? What is their story? How did their story impact you? Reflect on why you chose to discuss them in your paper.
• Sections 2 – 4: Next, include your answers for the student choice section prompts here (See the list of choices on page 2). All papers must include answers to at least 3 of the prompt choices. Each answer/discussion should be three separate paragraphs (i.e., sections) of the paper
• Section 5: After your visit, read the Human Rights Campaign Fatal Violence Against the Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Community in 2022 report and the Over 120 Bills Restricting LGBTQ Rights Introduced Nationwide in 2023 So Far article provided on Blackboard. Then, reflect on how the overall themes of the civil rights movement, the memorial center, the wall of tolerance, the EJI legacy museum, and the EJI’s National Memorial for Peace and Justice is still so relevant today in terms of the information in the current attacks on the Transgender community. Within this reflection, be sure to describe how you imagine one of the victims honored within the 2022 article must have felt about how the world viewed them and what you can do to help stop this epidemic
• Section 6: At the conclusion of the paper, include a section for your personal reflections of experience by discussing each the following prompts:
1. Describe how the information and the people you learned about in the memorial/museum influenced your perception of current events. If your perception was not influenced, explain why.
2. What is the overall meaning or significance of the memorial/museum to you, someone you know, and society as a whole? What can be learned from going to this center?
3. Finally, reflect on what personal changes you see yourself making in your life now that the class is over. End the paper with your answer to the biggest question posed within the class: what difference can you make? What can you do to reduce prejudice, hate, and discrimination in yourself and in others? What do you plan to do to continue to learn, grow, and do better moving forward
Student Choice Section Prompt Choices (paper must include at least 3:
• Discuss how you saw the concept of social identity theory (Chapter 8) involved within the events described within the memorial/museum and/or the posted article.
• Discuss how you saw the concept of realistic conflict theory (Chapter 8) involved within the events described within the memorial/museum and/or the posted article.
• Discuss how you saw the concept of hate groups (Chapter 8) and hate crimes (Chapter 9) involved within the events described within the memorial/museum and/or the posted article.
• Discuss how you saw the different types of discrimination (Chapter 9) involved within the events described within the memorial/museum and/or the posted article.
• Discuss how you saw the concept of prejudice against transgender people (Chapter 11) involved within the events described within the memorial/museum and/or the posted article.
• Discuss how the concept of intergroup contact theory (Chapter 13) and how it can work to reduce prejudice.
On April 25th, I visited the National Memorial for Peace and Justice and the Legacy Museum, located in Montgomery, Alabama. The National Memorial for Peace and Justice was opened in 2018 by the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) to acknowledge the victims of racial terror lynchings that occurred in the United States from the late 1800s to the mid-1900s. The Legacy Museum also opened in 2018 and is located a few blocks away from the memorial. The museum explores the history of slavery, lynching, and racial segregation in America. This visit was an eye-opening experience, and it allowed me to learn about the history of the United States that is often ignored or swept under the rug. In this paper, I will describe my initial reactions, highlight three individuals I learned about, answer three student choice prompts, reflect on the relevance of the civil rights movement, and finally, provide personal reflections.
Section 1: Initial Reactions and Highlighted Individuals
Upon arriving at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, I was struck by the memorial’s sheer size and the number of hanging steel rectangles that represented each county where lynching occurred in the United States. As I walked through the memorial, I felt sadness and anger simultaneously. The Legacy Museum was equally as impactful, as it displayed the brutality and inhumane treatment enslaved Africans and African Americans experienced in the United States. The entire experience was sobering, and it made me question how the United States could perpetrate such atrocities.
During the visit, I learned about many individuals who suffered and died due to systemic oppression and violence. Three individuals that stood out to me were Mary Turner, Henry Smith, and Jesse Washington. Mary Turner was eight months pregnant when she was lynched by a mob in Lowndes County, Georgia, in 1918. The reason for her lynching was that she had spoken out against the lynching of her husband. The mob that killed Mary and her unborn child also lynched at least six other African Americans that day. Henry Smith was a 17-year-old African American boy who was accused of killing a white girl in Paris, Texas, in 1893. A mob captured Henry, tortured him, burned him alive, and sold postcards of his charred body as souvenirs. Jesse Washington was a 17-year-old African American boy who was lynched by a mob in Waco, Texas, in 1916. He was accused of murdering a white woman, but there was no physical evidence to support this claim. He was dragged out of the courtroom, castrated, and burned alive in front of a crowd of thousands of people.
These stories highlight the horrific treatment of African Americans in the United States and how justice was often denied to them. These individuals’ stories affected me because they represented the brutal and violent racism that existed in America’s history. I chose to discuss these three individuals in my paper because I wanted to highlight their stories and acknowledge the injustice they faced.
Section 2: Realistic Conflict Theory
Realistic conflict theory (Chapter 8) proposes that prejudice arises when groups compete for scarce resources, and negative attitudes towards the out-group become more prevalent. The concept of realistic conflict theory is evident in the lynching of African Americans. White Americans perceived African Americans as a threat to their economic, social, and political status. Lynching was often used to intimidate African Americans and maintain white supremacy. By targeting African Americans who were perceived as a threat, white Americans could maintain their power and control over African Americans. This competition for resources, power, and status led to the development and maintenance of negative attitudes towards African Americans, resulting in the lynching of thousands of individuals.
Section 3: Types of Discrimination
Chapter 9 discusses different types