Senior Thesis 2020

Abby Williams

Street Perspectives: How Street Newspaper Vendors (Re)Create the City of Portland, Oregon

The steadily increasing rate of chronic homelessness in Portland, made visible by the dearth of shelter beds and affordable housing units, has signaled to city politicians and residents that homelessness is a problem-so much so that Portland declared a homeless-state-of-emergency. However, mainstream city discourses about homelessness often lack input from unhoused people. Furthermore, political and scholarly discussions of homelessness traditionally fail to reach beyond of the problems associated with homelessness to include the contributions unhoused people. A notable alternative media source that prioritizes the experiences and insights of unhoused people is Portland's street newspaper-Street Roots-sold by and for people experiencing homelessness and extreme poverty. The present study addresses the gap in scholarly discourse by prioritizing the insights of Street Roots vendors. In this study I analyze in-depth interviews with 15 Street Roots vendors and 34 hours of participant observation in the Street Roots office. I draw on socio-spatial analyses to reveal the way the city creates exclusionary spaces for unhoused people, and how Street Roots vendors counteract this exclusion by both individually and collectively creating representative spaces. Furthermore, I demonstrate that Street Roots vendor participation and representation in the public translates to informed city policy changes.

Key Words: Street Newspaper, Homelessness, Portland, Community, Critical Urban Theory



Anna Stern

Love's Labor Learned: How Girls Perform Familial Emotion Work First through Self-Regulation and Later through the Conscientious Management of a Positive Family Structure

Girls' and young women's unrelenting performance of emotion work in their personal lives is a deeply prevalent yet under-researched phenomenon of gendered labor. This study seeks to understand how girls perform familial emotion work in an effort to uncover that emotion work is not a natural expression of womanhood nor familial love, but rather a costly gender performance and burden women carry since early girlhood. Eight college-aged women with brothers were interviewed in depth about their family dynamic and familial responsibility. The collected data demonstrated that girls' familial role is marked by their emotion work. The labor is first directed inward, manifesting in a commitment to not be a burden on their families, which they accomplished through self-regulation of their behavior and emotions. In young adulthood, girls' emotion work transitioned outward, developing into a broader feeling of responsibility to manage the wellbeing of their entire family unit.

Keywords: emotion work, gendered labor, familial responsibility, girlhood



Belle Durkin

Brooklyn's Best: A Content Analysis of the Branding of Luxury Residential Developments in Gentrifying Brooklyn Neighborhoods

In the era of increasing public/private partnerships in the development and redevelopment of neighborhoods in New York City, developers play a key role in shaping not only the built environment of cities, but also the images and perceptions that people have about targeted neighborhoods and districts. The foci of this study are the branding strategies of luxury residential developments in gentrifying neighborhoods in New York City. This study seeks to explore the narrative that these developers are presenting to potential residents, and how existing neighborhood characteristics are commodified when used as a branding strategy. The study uses qualitative content analysis of the luxury developments' websites, the developers' websites, and news articles to provide insight into how branding reflects an image of the city that developers are trying to construct, and how existing neighborhood qualities are used in such branding. The developers brand the culture and diversity of the neighborhoods as experiences to be consumed and enjoyed by incoming residents, while also branding the developments as agents of community development. The developers present a savior-esque role as innovative transformers of neighborhoods, while conveniently ignoring existing community spaces and groups in the neighborhood beforehand.

Keywords: branding, gentrification, commodification of culture, urbanization, development



Carter Harrison

The Zapatista Revolution Versus the Traditional Media: Neoliberalism's Ideological Front Line

Here is my abstract "The Zapatista uprising in 1994 is not limited to the Chiapas region of Mexico and was not simply a response to the signing of NAFTA. Rather, it is a resistance movement directed specifically against the global neoliberal hegemony. For this reason, the multinational corporations, politicians and economists who make up the global hegemony have a vested interest in halting the narratives and ambitions of the EZLN. From hegemony's earliest roots with Marx, it has been assumed that the traditional mass media is one of the strongest mechanisms for promoting hegemony and suppressing dissent (O'Neill and Wayne 2018). For this reason, this study includes a Critical Discourse Analysis on a sample of news articles related to the Zapatista uprising in 1994. These 50 articles contained the search term "Zapatista", were released in 1994, and were selected from the Nexus Uni database. The method draws particularly from CDA as described by scholar Norman Fairclough in his book Critical Discourse Analysis: The Critical Study of Language (1995). Analysis of these articles finds a trend in language that delegitimizes the Zapatistas' academic position, yet makes no direct comment on their character. This finding suggests the need to solve the moral dilemma for readers who generally support disadvantaged peoples, but also believe in laissez-faire economics. This paper illustrates the way in which hegemonic narratives responded and adapted to direct ideological threat from the Zapatista Revolution."

Keywords: neoliberalism, social movements, CDA, hegemonic narrative, discourse, Zapatista uprising



Celia Sommer

"I'm Intelligent Too": Highly Educated Latin American Immigrant Incorporation in the US

The topic of highly educated immigrant incorporation has been studied through the integration paradox within Eastern European immigrant communities. This paradox argues that highly educated immigrants turn away from the host society, rather than becoming more incorporated with it. However, this research has not adequately addressed highly educated Latin American immigrant communities in the US. Additionally, this research has not sufficiently addressed an added layer of the paradox of how the intersection of race and class may play a role in immigrant incorporation experiences. Therefore, this paper will address highly educated Latin American immigrants with special attention to the intersection of race and class. Specifically, this paper will examine how the intersection of race and class plays a role in the incorporation experiences of highly educated Latin American immigrants in the US; furthermore, how highly educated Latin American immigrants make meaning of their incorporation experiences in the US. The data was collected through intensive interviews with highly educated Latin American immigrants in the US. The main findings are: 1) participants have feelings of resentment from experienced micro-aggressions and stereotypes, 2) participants with lighter skin are self-aware of their privileges and recognize that race is a correlation to class for Latin Americans, 3) the participants disengage from the US society because they feel deprived of their previous social and class status they experienced in their home country, 4) many of the participants felt that Americans devalued their intelligence and overall capabilities, and 5) highly educated Latin American immigrants have a lost or confused identity after spending time in the US. This paper demonstrates the significance that the intersection of race and class has on the incorporation experiences of highly educated Latin American immigrants in the US.

Key words: immigrant incorporation, integration paradox, highly educated immigrants



Charlotte Majercik

There Is No Absolute Truth: A contextual analysis of flat earth discussions and the strategies of knowledge production within them

This study examines knowledge production/claims-making within online discussions on contested scientific knowledge, specifically, flat earth theory. This study uses content analysis of four online discussions found on the Flat Earth society website and of field notes from one in-person discussion of flat earth theory. Bourdieu's concept of field theory heavily influenced my analysis of these discussions and was formative in the creation of my coding scheme. In this research, I found that depending on their belief in either a round or flat earth the participants use different methods of producing knowledge. The flat earth believers create their methods of producing knowledge often by validating personally collected evidence over that of evidence that has been published in conventionally accepted sources (i.e. peer-reviewed journals). The round earth believers do not produce knowledge in the conventional ways prescribed by science, instead, they follow the methods of the flat earth believers mainly by not using proper citations. The flat earth believers not only place value on their methods of knowledge production but also devalue the methods of conventional science. The comments of both the two groups draw our attention to the blind faith society has in scientific knowledge.

Keywords: knowledge production, contested science, field theory, Bourdieu, flat earth, round earth, content analysis, online discussion(s)



Elam Boockvar-Klein

Affordable Housing and the Zoning Code: Policy-Changing Campaigns in Seattle and Minneapolis

This study uses case study research to examine the conditions of successful zoning policy changes meant to address housing affordability crises in Seattle and Minneapolis. Research revealed that existing political windows - due to the presence of progressive councilmembers and city staff - became the impetus for advocacy engagement. Grassroots activists then crafted framings tailored to their contexts to gain the support of environmental groups, city officials, and racial justice groups. A sense of conflict with Not-In-My-Backyard (NIMBY) opponents in turn mobilized coalition stakeholders to provide the political cover necessary for councilmembers to defend proposed changes. These findings provide a blueprint for affordable housing advocacy across the country, contributing to the cascade of campaigns that have emerged in recent years.

Key words: housing, campaign, social movement, zoning policy, Seattle, Minneapolis



Eliza Guion

Envisioning Food Security: Resident Perspectives from a Colorado Neighborhood

Food security in the U.S. presents an enormous paradox: although we are the wealthiest country in the world, some 14.3 million U.S. households experience food insecurity annually. Food security in the U.S. has become a topic of increasing scholarly concern over the past few decades; however, there remain gaps between academic knowledge production and applied interventions to improve food security on the ground. Government and academic publications alike have called for more participatory, localized approaches that address the needs of specific communities. The present study employs a qualitative, community-based methodology to explore what residents envision as food security in their neighborhood and what this implies for potential interventions. I analyze 14 semi-structured interviews and one focus group from the Meadows' Park neighborhood in Colorado Springs, Colorado. I found residents envisioned food security as economic and physical access to healthy foods and neighborhood well-being, and I argue that the success of food security interventions hinges upon meeting this vision. In this study, I center participant perspectives to generate a resident-driven vision of food security that can inform proposed neighborhood interventions.

Keywords: Food Security, Community-Based Research, Neighborhood, Envisioning



Eva King

An Analysis of the Innate Factors Impacting Patient Safety in Our Hospitals

This study addresses the structural and organizational factors that are associated with varying levels of patient safety in hospitals across the U.S. With a sample of 1,171 nurses across 27 hospitals, I use t-tests and logistic regression analysis to examine the factors that have an association with nurse perceptions of patient safety. The subjective nature of this study focuses on nurse perceptions of quality care. Frequent pressure, dysfunction, and a lack of collaboration between nurses and physicians as felt by nurses prove to be associated with poor patient safety in hospitals. The aim of this study is twofold: 1) to bring attention to the prevalence of medical errors due to a lack of patient safety in our hospitals; and 2) to highlight the factors that are creating unsafe environments for patients in hopes of guiding future policymakers, labor-rights activists, and healthcare organizations to put patients first.

Keywords: Patient-safety, pressure, dysfunction, collaboration, stress, workload, complex systems, risk, workforce dynamics, teamwork



Hailey Corkery:

Not "Just A Trip": Personal and Political Implications of American Jewish Tourism in Israel/Palestine

This thesis explores how travel to Israel/Palestine affects young liberal American Jewish tourists' Jewish identity, feelings of attachment to Israel, and political opinions about the Israeli occupation. In order to investigate these topics, I conducted twenty in-depth interviews with young liberal American Jews who have been to Israel/Palestine. In my research, I have found that travel to Israel/Palestine affects both one's beliefs and sense of self through introducing tourists to narratives about Israel being a safe place, sparking new relationships between tourists and other Jews, showing travelers that Judaism is not monolithic, and instigating contact with people living in the region. Travel to this region also has larger political consequences that harm Palestinians. While my research is specifically about young liberal American Jewish travel to Israel/Palestine, it also gives insight into the ethics and implications of tourism in general. My main argument about tourism is that while it seems like a leisure activity, it is inevitably a political practice.



Halle Taylor-Schall

Anyone Can Wear the Mask: Centralist and Casual Approaches to a Transgender Headcanon

Fanfiction showcases fans' ideas that do not appear in the published canon of a book series, television show, or movie franchise. In fanfiction, when these ideas ascribe traits to characters, such as their race, ethnicity, gender, or sexuality, they are referred to as headcanons. This project studied five authors and one reader of the headcanon that Peter Parker, as played by Tom Holland in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is a young transgender man. It found that they engaged with the headcanon both as writers and readers in two ways: the centralist approach and the casualist approach. Using the centralist approach, authors place Peter Parker's transgender identity at the center of the story, often using their writing as a way to process events in their own lives. In the casual approach, Peter's transgender identity is present but not the focus of the story, which was considered a more realistic depiction of transgender people than the centralist approach provides. Both approaches serve distinct purposes that authors and readers seek out depending on their needs.

Keywords: fanfiction, queer imagination, textual poaching



Harley Guzman

An Examination Of Informal Social Control and Formal Social Control in Their Effects on Fear of Crime and Object Crime: The Sweet-Spot to Policing in Seattle Neighborhoods

This study aims to identify the differences between informal social control and formal social control in their relationships to fear of crime and objective crime in order to better understand crime within neighborhoods. Through the use of the Seattle Neighbors and Crime Survey, 2002-2003 (Matsueda 2002), four multivariate logistic regressions were run, using the independent variables of cohesion, informal control, demographic variables, attitudes towards police, and formal control, for the four dependent variables: fear of violent crime, fear of property crime, objective violent crime, and objective property crime. This study finds that there is a sweet-spot to formal policing which decreases objective violent crime without starkly increasing fear. In line with previous studies, this study finds that informal social control consistently decreases the probability of fear whereas formal social control increases the probability of fear, but decreases the probability of objective violent crime.

Keywords: Informal Social Control, Formal Social Control, Fear of Crime, Objective Crime, Collective Efficacy



Harper Tice

"Can We Even Say 'Jesus' Here?": A study of community and belonging for Christian students at a small liberal arts college

Abstract: In an effort to gain a deeper understanding of how members of numerical minority religious groups find belonging and navigate their identities within their given context, I studied the experiences of Christian students at a small liberal arts college. The results of this study indicate that many Christian students struggle to find community and acceptance within the college community due to the religious aspects of their identity. Furthermore, many of these students attempted to find community through groups within the city that surrounds the school, at which point they were met with a "double stigmatization" on account of their connections to their college. This thesis explores not only the conditions that lead to Christian students to lack a sense of belonging and community, but also the emotional and social implications of this issue.

Keywords: belonging, stigma, passing, networks, religion, Christianity, inclusivity, marginalization, diversity



Isabella McShea

"Close" To Good Health: A Quantitative Analysis of County-Level Health Outcomes and Proximity To Planned Parenthood Clinics Versus Crisis Pregnancy Center Locations

Research on family planning clinics has found that some population health outcomes vary with regard to proximity to reproductive health care. This research paper discusses the impacts of proximity to both Planned Parenthood clinics and Crisis Pregnancy Center locations on county-level health outcomes. Using a two-model regression, I analyzed the relationship between proximity and health outcome data concerning HIV rate and teen birth rate of 3,138 counties within the United States. These regressions controlled for relevant demographic and other factors that could influence health outcomes, such as class and race. Predicted values of HIV rates increased with proximity to Planned Parenthood clinics and increased with proximity to CPC locations. Additionally, predicted teen birth rates decreased with proximity to Planned Parenthood clinics and did not clearly increase or decrease with proximity to CPC locations. To conclude, this paper proposes various types of public health research that could help clarify the effects of proximity to CPCs and Planned Parenthood clinics on population health outcomes within the United States.



Julia Shepard

Low Voter Turnout at High Elevation: A Case Study of a Negative Outlier Institution

Despite the generally progressive culture on campus, Colorado College's student voting rates trail far behind those of other schools in Colorado, comparable liberal arts institutions, and the national average. This predicament is further underscored by the demographics of Colorado College and the larger geographic context in which Colorado offers a vote-by-mail system. Using a survey completed by almost a third of the Colorado College student body, this study identifies the factors associated with non-voting and highlights some of the challenges both voters and nonvoters face in relation to the voting process. Logistic regression analyses find that sociodemographic and college specific factors hardly account for voting and non-voting behaviors in this sample. Instead, this study points to political engagement as the most influential factor in accounting for such variance. Based on the results of this study, motivational and logistical recommendations are provided to the College with the goal of improving student voting rates.

Keywords: voter turnout, college students, political engagement, (non)voting behavior, challenges



Jun Hyuk Park

"Making Windows Where There Were Once Walls": The Pedagogy of Safe Spaces in the Age of Polarization

This study will attempt to provide an archetypal account of the "safe space" and investigate the conditions that prompt the appearance of a designated "safe space". In addition, it will analyze how a "safe space" acquires its respective discourse and determine how a "safe space" constructs itself as "safe". For this study, I sampled two student organizations and conducted in-depth interviews with separate members from both organizations. The study found that these student organizations construct themselves as "safe spaces" as they actively practice their established notions of safety. In other words, these organizations discursively form their functions as "safe spaces" as they determine what safety means for their respective member-bases. Through this lens, the "safe space" is a safety seeking process that informs its existence as it recognizes the formative and restrictive conditions of its emergence. Thus, the "safe space" can be imagined as a paradoxical system that determines its formation and larger function through the situated context of its historical occurrence.

Key Words: safe space, discourse, discursive formation, Rules of Formation, historical specificity, subjectivity



Lucy Feldman

"You're Crying, What's Wrong with You?": An Examination of Mental Health Attitude in Mothers and Daughters

Differing mental health attitudes between parents and children can contribute to the mental health treatment gap, child self-stigma and a negative self-image, and be detrimental to the parent-child relationship. The purpose of this study was thus to investigate the mental health attitudes of daughters and mothers (aged 20-58) to determine areas of dissent and the factors that contribute to mental health attitudes, with the overall goal of mitigating these problems in the future. Five female-identifying students from Colorado College and their mothers from the same demographic group were interviewed. The findings indicate that mothers and daughters have similar MH attitudes, which were formed by the state of mental health care, the level of mental health knowledge and awareness, and of perceived social support. Future research with more participants is needed in order to generalize the findings of this research to the rest of the population.

Key words: mental health attitude, parent-child relationship, child self-stigma



Max St Pierre

The Price to Play NCAA: A Sociological Analysis on Student-Athlete Retirement

"While some studies research and analyse the athletic identity of students, type of retirement and student social support, research mixing all three together is rare. This study addresses the sociological implementations of student athlete retirement from Colorado College while taking these three themes into consideration. In a small sample of retired student athletes from Colorado College, interviews were conducted with the participants in an effort to examine the factors and the hidden struggles associated with retirement among student athletes. The data collected in this study suggests that retirement in general is beneficial for the participants. ln addition, this study suggests that retirement is a positive outcome for these students since overall happiness increased in their post-retirement lives. The discussion section revolves around the formation of their identity, the benefits and the drawbacks of retirement and the participants sources of social and emotional support. Limitations of this study, future directions and possible transitional buffers are discussed as well."



Rachel Delley

The Psychosocial Costs of Racism to Colorado College White Students

Understanding the cost of racism to the mental health of White Americans is crucial to understanding racism as a whole. Lisa Spainerman and Mary Heppner have created a Psychosocial Cost of Racism to Whites scale or PCRW. This study replicated former use of their survey, sampling Colorado College students while focusing on the role academic majors may play. The students were asked to respond to questions about racism that resulted in measures of their guilt, fear, and empathy towards racism. Analysis showed agreement with past research showing differences between responses from different genders, political parties, and exposure levels to people of color. Academic majors didn't show statistically significant differences. The results call for further research to be done to examine the role liberal arts education plays in how White Americans view and respond to racism.

Key Words: Racism, White Americans, PCRW, Colorado College


Rachel Sheridan

Inequalities in School Readiness: How Social Class, Parental Involvement and Early Childhood Programs Intersect

This study addresses the negative effects of low socioeconomic status (SES) on early childhood cognitive development, moderating variables, and variables that mitigate disparities. In a sample of 3,960 parents/guardians answering for their child, I use OLS regression models to examine SES measures that negatively impact early childhood cognitive development as well as models to examine potential mitigating variables. Being black or Hispanic, coming from a low income household, and having a parent/guardian with low education levels are associated with lower levels of early childhood development. Parental involvement and program participation positively impact school readiness levels. I conclude by drawing attention to the need for prevention of disparities early on in childhood to foster the decrease of the cycle of inequality.

Keywords: early childhood, cognitive development, SES, school readiness, education, parental involvement, program participation, inequality



Ramah Aleryan

Centering Syrian Voices: Departing the "Refugee Crisis" Narrative

Based on interviews with Syrian refugees and asylum seekers in Shatila camp in Beirut, Lebanon, and Oslo, Norway, my project builds on the insights of transnational and Middle Eastern feminist theory as well as critical refugee studies to make my material speak back to dominant narratives about and assumptions about refugees. In particular, my project seeks to expand our understanding of refugee subjectivity and experience by highlighting the multiple modalities of agency. My aim is to shift the "refugee crisis" narrative from a narrative that seeks to view the refugee as "threat" and "collateral damage" to a narrative that is constructed by racist, orientalist, colonial, and xenophobic histories.

The second aim of my project is to interrogate myself as an Egyptian/Arab post-colonial and post-revolutionary researcher doing work with refugees from the Middle East in English and from a position of relative privilege due to my access to Western privileges, resources and forms of knowledge as a student in the U.S. I, therefore, highlight the difficulties and power dynamics of translation both in my analysis and in the presentation of my material. Through auto-ethnography, and the use of Arabic in my paper, my aim is to present a fuller and more multilayered story that resists closure and conceptions of the researcher as all-knowing. Ultimately, my aim is to imagine a more ethical, just and capacious refugee epistemology that seeks to capture the complexity of refugee subjectivities and to resist doing violence to their stories, hopes, and dreams in the name of research.

Keywords: Syria, Refugees, Displacement, Integration, Return, Crisis



Riley Starling

The Private Misconduct of Public Servants: Pathways to career death and survival after allegations of gender-based violence

This study identifies pathways to career death and career survival in a sample of 41 US male politicians accused of gender-based violence. The hypotheses draw on literature concerning rape culture, the symbolic annihilation of women's issues in the public sphere, and leader integrity. The dichotomous variables associated with each case are analyzed in combinations using crisp set Qualitative Comparative Analysis to determine the most salient recipes for career survival and career death. Survival is rarer and more complex than career death. The #MeToo movement is a powerful determinant for career death, but nearly all recipes for career death involve multiple victims, harsh allegations, or evidence, indicating society is still reluctant to believe survivors. The analysis identifies reliable pathways and offers direction for further research.

Key words: rape culture, gender based violence, #MeToo movement, crisp set Qualitative Comparative Analysis



Skye Ellison

An Analysis of The Effects of Gender and Partner Type on The Division of Household Labor

Abstract: This study uses the 2009-2018 American Time Use Survey and Current Population Survey to analyze time spent on household labor for 58,118 men and women in opposite- and same-sex partnerships. Following past research, I categorized household chores are categorized as either female-typed or male-typed. There are multiple theories typically used to explain this gendered division of household labor, and this study finds support for the Time Availability, Relative Resources, Gender Ideology, and Gender Construction theories. The data suggest that gender and partner type have a significant effect on the division of household labor

Keywords: gender, gendered division of labor, family, household work, female-typed chores, male-typed chores



Stephanie Dewald

"Title IX Concepts Don't Apply To Us, We're Dudes": An Analysis of How Colorado College Male Identifying Athletes Create an Understanding of Male Sex Roles

This study used in-depth interviews with 8 male identifying athletes at Colorado College to explore the social processes that influenced their understanding of their masculine role within their gendered sexual script. Research revealed that the participants early exposure to pornography as their main source of education on sex, and their experiences navigating the highly aggressive social culture of their athletic teams, led the participants to create an understanding of sexual interaction that did not include asking for or conveying direct affirmative consent from their partners. The development of the participants' understanding of their sex roles persists through macro ideologies including doing gender, social scripting theory and hegemonic masculinity. Despite Colorado College's institutionalized commitment to educating the student body in the intricate manners in which consent must operate, this study illustrates how there remains a lack of understanding of consent among the male identifying athletic community; this paper concludes with curriculum recommendations for Title IX's collaboration with the Colorado College Athletic Department.

Key words: Consent, Hegemonic Masculinity, Aggression, Sex Roles



Zoe Zhou

From "Weirdos" to "Lovely People": The Incorporation of Chinese Rural Subculture

This research analyzed the incorporation process of the Chinese rural subculture by focusing on the mainstream media's reactions to "Kuaishou". Kuaishou is a short video app that is extremely popular among China's rural population, and it is considered as an online subcultural field of the rural subculture. 27 popular posts from China's mainstream media platforms from 2016 to 2019 were coded for understanding different strategies that the hegemonic group applies. The analysis shows that although the Chinese rural subculture has successfully built an influential online community, its resistant power is being neutralized. In the beginning, the hegemonic group demonized the Chinese rural subculture, so that it could take supervising action over the subculture. More recently, the hegemonic group is converting subcultural products into harmless commodities. Kuaishou itself is transforming from a deviant field to another mainstream social media platform as well.

Keywords: China; Subculture; Social media; Hegemony; "Kuaishou"



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