Monday, April 26, 2010


College is regarded as an important time in one's life. Society even portrays it to be a rite of passage into adulthood because "everybody goes to college." Therefore, it is instilled in children's brains all throughout grade school that one must go to college in order to be regarded as a high achieving citizen. However, aspects of college do not fit into the definition of Rites of Passage. Rites of Passage are coming of age rituals that are identical among each person. In college, one focuses on the self and self fulfilling happiness and success. Everyone has different priorities. Therefore, college is portrayed as a rite of passage but is failing to provide graduates with the proper transitions and success of adulthood.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Evolution of Paper

When I first addressed my paper I wanted to take the stand that college is a liminal state between adulthood and childhood and that what happens in college is not clearly defined. Now, I still want to say that what happens in college is not clearly defined, however I am focusing on college as a rite of passage. When I first thought of college as a rite of passage I insisted that it was, because I have been hearing my whole life that I had to go to college. Now, I am trying to examine if college is a failing rite of passage, if all rites of passage are failing, and if the college rite of passage is a privatized and self project.


I chose this picture because it marks a time that people usually spend four years working towards. Wearing cap and gown and tossing the cap after graduation marks the completion of a stage in one's life.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Blog 12 Outline

Is College a Liminal Period/state and how does it serve as a rite of passage to the society?

I. Admission/Beginning
i. Leaving the home, breaking free from adults
ii. What should I expect/ why should I go to college?
1. marriage-to secure a good mate
2. education-to be seen as a higher rank in society (provides opportunity to be better
then our parents
II. Ambiguous/Liminal Period
i. I am not a child, not an adult
1. What responsibilities do I have to myself? to my family?
ii. Unique (or not so unique) rituals during college years/what are the tasks
1. set out by family (ie: dad joins fraternity, son joins same fraternity)
iii. What is expected during this time?
iv. Rebels
1. Time to do "whatever I want"
2. Are people more liberal during college
III. Re-assimilation/Graduation
i. How does it 'change' you?
1. Are you really changed
2. Does it really make you an adult?
ii. Graduation marks a rite of passage into society
1. Who says this is what makes you a good person/potential mate
2. Why does McCandles rebel against mainstream society to prove that college does
necessarily make you an adult.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Blog 11: My case

My case addresses the mysteries of the thoughts and motivation of college students. It questions whether or not college is a positive transformation from childhood to adulthood. College can be seen as a liminal period between childhood, and adulthood where expectations of those in college can fall into both those of children and adults. However, some argue that college is simply buying more time to be a child, except without all the rules that are present prior to the college years. Without many rules and laws to follow, this allows college students to define their own autonomy and explore different cultures and experiences. In an ideal society, students would want to go to school and focus soley on thier studies. However, as I am doing this blog in the computer lab I can see many cell phones sitting on top of notebooks, and many screens that display facebook rather than a paper. Could many of my fellow classmates only be attending college because it is expected in society to finish college to be seen as an adult. Therefore college can be seen as an aid or inhibit one from becoming an adult.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Blog 10: The Debate

The debate that is framing around my paper addresses the function college plays in the passage to adulthood. Some, such as Michael Moffatt argue that college role in determining one’s actions such as defining the autonomy of a student. Also, he shows that college students have a different attitude when there is a lack of influence from parents, and there is an increase of influence from peers. This lack of influence may be a negative effect on college students. The Columbia University article supports facts that substance abuse and drinking alcohol is a society rite of passage. In college, it is acceptable to drink and smoke everyday, however many college undergraduates support the saying "its only alcoholism after graduation." This example of undergraduate cynical ism supports the prolonging of growing up. Is college infact a rite of passage created by society, or is it a time when college students embrace the change? Theses issues frame the question whether or not college is a beneficial rite of passage into adulthood, and how the actions of college undergraduates helps them grow up.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Blog 9: Help!

I think the most challenging part of my paper is framing my argument and putting it into words. I think I found some good key terms such as "liminality", "autonomy", and "rites of passage". Although I think I am headed in the right direction, but I believe I am far from drawing conclusions and making a viable argument. I am having trouble drawing conclusions and the conclusions that I do find are confusing. Also, I am unsure what exactly I am going to do for a primary source. I believe I am going to do interviews. I am also going to look into those movies/books you suggested.