Oppression Interview Paper
For this paper, each student should interview someone who is different from the student by race and one other dimension of intersectionality. The student will also conduct a literature review related to the interviewee. Once the interview and literature review are completed, write a 10 to 12 pages, double-spaced paper with 1 inch margins and 12-point font. Title page, abstract, and references are not included in the required page count. Cite the literature you draw from using APA style (use a minimum of 5-7 citations).
In order to protect confidentiality, use a codename for your interviewee. In addition to a Title Page, Abstract, Introduction, Conclusion, and References, the paper structure is outlined below. Use this outline in your paper:
In this paper you are asked to interview someone of a different race and one other dimension of intersectionality: ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability and ability, class, immigration status, and religion. Ask questions from the topic area that corresponds to your interviewees group. (These starter interview questions are provided below in the beginning question section). Additional questions should be added by the student and included in the paper. Provide a single-spaced verbatim of you actual interview session).
Before you begin your interview, remember to inform your interviewee that their participation is completely voluntary, that they can refuse to answer any or all questions, and their identity will be kept confidential. Again, be sure to omit any identifying information from your paper. You should participate together in a social activity where your interviewees group is in the majority (dinner, club, movie, cultural event, etc.) before engaging in the interview. Describe the social event at the start of your paper. This is followed by the complete interview, word-for-word and single-spaced.
II. Literature Review
Do a brief literature review on your interviewees member group (e.g., if you interviewed a lesbian woman, find articles on lesbian women). Review at least 5-7 sources of current, written within the past 5 years, scholarly literature.
Compare and contrast your interviewees experience with what you found in the literature. Develop tentative conclusions regarding how social workers can best assist persons from your respondents group based on a critical analysis of the interview, class materials, the research and your own thinking/experience.
In summary, answer the following questions:
1. How might your personal values, history and experiences influence the way in which you view others?
2. What are some of the similarities and differences you encountered between your answers and your interviewees answers?
3. In what ways might your interviewees views influence your thinking?
4. Has this exercise raised questions for you concerning your readiness to work with people of different cultures?
5. How has this experience help to raise your understanding of the intersection of oppression, poverty, racial differences, privilege and any bias that you might have.
Beginning Questions Section
Issues of Ethnicity and Race
If you interview someone who is a member of a racial or ethnic group different from your own, ask the following questions:
1. How do you identify yourself ethnically or racially? Explain why.
2. Do you recall when you first realized that you were a member of this group? Describe.
3. What do you think are commonly held misconceptions about your race/ethnicity?
4. What do you think are the benefits and disadvantages of membership in your race/ethnicity?
5. What do social workers need to know in order to be effective in assisting people of your race/ethnicity
Issues of Gender
If you interview someone who is of the opposite gender, transgendered, etc., ask the following questions:
1. Do you recall when you first learned that you were female (or male)? If so, please describe how you felt and what you thought about your gender.
2. What did your family/caretakers teach you about women and men?
3. What do you think are commonly held misconceptions about your gender?
4. What do you think are the benefits and disadvantages of being a member of your gender?
5. What do social workers need to know in order to effectively assist women/men, boys/girls?
Issues of Sexual Orientation
If you interview someone who is a lesbian or gay male, ask the following questions:
1. When did you first become aware of your romantic/sexual feelings for members of your gender? When did you identify yourself as a lesbian/gay man?
2. How out are you? How did you decide to come out (or not come out)?
3. What do you think are commonly held misconceptions about gay men or lesbians?
4. How did your family (if they know) react to the news of your sexual orientation?
5. What has been the most difficult thing about being gay/lesbian? What is the best part?
6. What do social workers need to know in order to be most helpful to lesbians and gay men?
Issues of Physical Challenge
If you interview someone who is physically challenged or, if you are differently-abled, if you interview someone whose physical challenge is different from yours, ask the following questions:
1. When did you first become aware that you were differently-abled? What was your reaction? What were the reactions of others?
2. How would you characterize societys response to physically challenged persons?
3. What do you think are commonly held misconceptions about persons with physical challenges/your physical challenge?
4. What do you think are the benefits/disadvantages of being differently-abled?
5. What do social workers need to know about persons who are physically challenged in order to be most effective in helping them?