narrative on female friendship

Challenges to Female Friendship Narrative

One of the central themes in our course is investigating challenges in female friendship; that is, challenges between women and/or girls in the making of or keeping of friends. During our weeks together we will examine several factors that can pose challenges to friendship, such as sexuality, race, ethnicity, appearance, age, disability, and religion, as well as other factors. Several of our readings describe the authors experiences of challenges to female friendship and how they thought about and dealt with (or did not deal with) these challenges.

This assignment will give you the opportunity to think, reflect, and write about the challenges you and others have faced in female friendships. Later this semester, you will come back to this assignment and explore the connections between your narrative and the ideas raised in the readings, lectures, and discussions over the duration of the course.

What is a narrative?

narrative |nartiv|


a spoken or written account of connected events

(Oxford American Dictionary)

Essentially, a narrative tells a story; it is a retelling of events or a chronicle of events.

What is a challenge?

challenge | cha-lnj|


to dispute especially as being unjust, invalid, or outmoded; to confront or defy boldly; a calling to account or into question

A challenge will go beyond a single argument, fight or disagreement between friends and question (challenge) the very foundation of the friendship.

Assignment Instructions:

For this assignment each student will prepare a 2 page typewritten and double-spaced narrative on female friendship. All papers must use an acceptable font (i.e. Calibri 11 ppt.) and adhere to proper citation when direct and indirect quotations are used APA, MLA, and Chicago are acceptable.

For all female students: Your narrative will describe a time when you experienced a challenge in a friendship with another female, or a challenge between female friends that you have observed personally, or watched or read about (movie, T.V. or book), and must be centered around one or more of the major course themes.

Note #1: If you chose to write about a female friendship in a book or movie, it cannot be a friendship depicted in Libba Brays Beauty Queens, or any of the friendships depicted in Karen Engs Secrets and Confidences or the readings in the coursepack.

Note #2: Whether you write about your own friendship, or a friendship you have observed, or a friendship in a book, on T.V. or in a movie, you should not talk about a friendship between sisters, a mother/daughter friendship, or a friendship among cousins. Because of the familial bond, there is a fundamental difference to the nature of the friendship.

Note #3: It is best to stick to a friendship between two women. From past experience, if you try to describe a friendship between three or more women, your narrative becomes too general because of the length restriction of this assignment. These narratives are also very hard to follow keeping all parties in the story straight can become difficult for the reader.

Note #4: It is best to stick to the major course themes and write about challenges to sexuality, race, ethnicity, appearance, age, disability and/or religion in your friendship narrative. If you write about boys or men as a challenge you may find it difficult to complete the friendship analysis paper later in the term.

Use the questions below as a guide to enrich your narrative:

1/3 of the page or approx. 1 paragraph: Describe the friendship (e.g. How did you/these friends meet? Why did you/they become friends? What was special about this friendship?

2/3 of the page or approx. 1 to 2 paragraphs: using the above definitions of challenge and in keeping with the course themes, describe the challenge you/they faced (e.g. What type of challenge did you/they face? Why was this a challenge for you/them? How did this challenge affect your/their friendship? How did it affect you and the other person/them?

If you are writing about a personal experience, you may write in the first person, but please respect the confidentiality of others and use pseudonyms in place of real names.

For the purpose of clarity and grading, please be specific when including the above questions in your paper do not lead the reader to assume or guess what it is you are trying to say. The best way to accomplish this is to use the wording of the questions in your narrative e.g.) Sarah and I met . Our friendship was special because . The challenge to our friendship was .

Keep in mind it is much more difficult to write a short paper than a long paper. Every word counts. Be sure everything you include is directly related to describing your friendship and the challenge you faced.

SafeAssign, Plagiarism, Late Penalties

1. Papers must be submitted  in order to be graded.

2. Papers with any amount of plagiarism will receive an “F” (0 points).

3. Assignments are due on the dates listed in the course syllabus and must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. .  Penalty for late assignments is 5% per day (including Saturday and Sunday) in order to be fair to those students who hand their work in on time.

4. If using a program other than MS Word, please convert youre a WORD document. Please no .odt or .rtf files. If your file cannot be opened you will be asked to re-submit your paper.


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