Midterm Exam – December 6 – 13

The examination consists of two questions as described below. Your response to each question should be between 1000 and 2000 words in length. The two papers will be weighted equally. Please complete your exam and send it to me by e-mail before 12:00 midnight on Wednesday, December 13. If you have any difficulty making an electronic submission, or if you prefer to submit a printed version, please bring a printed copy of your exam to my office (321 Calumet). Late papers will be accepted but a penalty will be assessed depending on when it is submitted.

Part I. Choose at least two items from List A below and at least two from List B. Write a paper in which you compare the two (or more) critiques you have selected with respect to the categories selected from Slife & Williams.

List A – some conceptual categories described in Slife & Williams

  • Ways of Knowing
  • Determinism
  • Reductionism

List B – some critiques of Psychology considered in the course

  • Kurt Danziger’s critique as seen in Naming the Mind
  • The human-scientific critique
  • The Marxist critique
  • The Feminist critique
  • The Postmodern critique
  • The Postcolonial critique

Part II. Read the following article:

Cosgrove, L. & Flynn, C. (2005). Marginalized mothers: Parenting without a home. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy, 5(1), 127-143.

The article is available by clicking on the journal title and proceeding to the appropriate pages of Volume 5, Issue 1. You will be asked to provide your library ID and password to gain access if you are not connecting to the internet through York.

Imagine that having read this article Brent Slife, Kurt Danziger and Thomas Teo gather around a table to discuss its strengths, its weaknesses and their suggestions for how the work on which it is based could be improved or extended. Write a paper in which you describe the ideas that you imagine emerging in such a discussion. If you wish, you may briefly summarize the article, but for the most part your paper should be a statement and elaboration of connections between the Cosgrove & Flynn article and the ideas we have studied in the course. You are welcome to add Isaac Prilleltensky, Cheryl Mattingly and/or Ignacio Martín-Baró to the table; and given the nature of Teo’s book, he may speak on behalf of any of those whose work he presents. If it suits your purposes, you are also welcome to add an anonymous representative of mainstream Psychology to the table.


Note: Don’t hesitate to write to me if you have questions during the exam period. Also remember that there is both a reading and a writing assignment to be completed for the first class after the break.

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