Reflect your life 10 years to present, discussing your personal transformation as related to a social movement. I am not sure how to do this.

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Lorraine Caplan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In this reflection, you are expected to discuss your own thoughts, feelings, and opinions on a particular social issue and how your thoughts, feelings, and opinions have evolved over the past ten years. This is assuming, of course, that your ideas on that particular issue have evolved in some way, which may or may not be the case, depending on the issue.  Clearly, you are best off choosing a social issue that you have changed your stance on in some way.

You may be wondering what constitutes a social issue for the purpose of this assignment.  That is a very large category, so you will have many choices.  Anything, really, that affects society is a social issue.  One social issue that has been on people's minds is gay rights, gay marriage in particular.  If your thoughts on this have changed, that would be a suitable social issue to discuss. Another is female reproductive rights, certainly a social issue.  Whether women should have access to abortion and free choices in birth control is a question you may have some thoughts about, perhaps some thoughts that have changed over ten years.  Still another issue is immigration, whether or not we should allow amnesty to undocumented immigrants, for example.  Your ideas on this might have changed.  Poverty is an enormous social problem.  Do you think there should be a living wage or that poor people should just work harder and not have any kind of safety net such as food stamps or medical assistance? 

The whole idea, I'm sure, is to show some growth in your thinking, a willingness to reconsider a previous position on a social issue, not a knee-jerk reaction that is premised on the opinions of your parents, your peers, or the media. How you have come to change your mind on a social issue is what is being looked for, evidence that you are able to think critically, examine evidence, and consider things for yourself.  Look back ten years to where you were. Then discuss how your thinking has changed over those years and why it has changed. Reflections are good for us, a means of making us think about how we think. 

Karen P.L. Hardison eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Another approach to "personal transformation" in relation to a social movement affecting you over time is to reflect on how you have experienced some sort of transcendence as a result of exposure to, involvement in or commitment to a social issue movement. In other words, you need not have changed your position, your stance, on the social issue, as in moved from for to against, but you may instead have reached a higher plane of awareness, consciousness, understanding or knowledge because of the social movement while maintaining your original position or stance.

An example of this may perhaps be the social movement focused on the right of all people, regardless of income or wealth, to the highest level of quality, attentive healthcare. Your original stance 10 years ago may have been a belief in this tenet and political support for it. In the ensuing years, your commitment to quality healthcare may have led you to explore alternative approaches to health and healthcare so that now, 10 years into expanding your understanding of health and of how to achieve health, you find that you have transcended some barrier of commonplace knowledge of what it means to be a healthy whole person.

This sort of transcendent experience may be spurred by just about any current social movement from ethnic/racial equality movements to gender movements to anti-corporation and anti-social experimentation movements to species preservation movements.