The genre I picked can be classified as broadly as a formal academic essay, and as specific as a psychological analysis. I’m using the article I wrote for The Michigan Daily — which centers around the tears of several basketball players after they lost in the National Championship game — to more broadly analyze the role of emotion in sports. This analysis will focus on a few specific questions that I hope to more clearly answer by the end of my essay. When is it socially acceptable to cry in sports? When is it not? More broadly, where do our conceptions about male emotions in sports come from? I will hope to use other situations in sports when athletes cried and there was either a backlash to those emotions or a more generally positive response, like I witnessed from the Michigan basketball team.
There are several potential stumbling blocks in my transformation. I’m worried about how much I should and should not relate back to the scene I witnessed. Since the article itself is obviously very anecdotal — focusing on scenes and quotes and not much broad context on masculinity — I will have to do all the research essentially from scratch. It’s much easier, in my opinion, to take an academic essay and make it an Op-Ed rather than the other way around. But this is the topic that intrigued me and my classmates most, so it’s the one I’m selecting.
The main concern I have is centering properly around the genre I’ve chosen (one that is a bit broad and vague). You all know, generally, what an academic essay is. It’s harder to nail down exactly how this will take the form of a psychological analysis, if that is indeed what I select. It won’t be a “case study” as described best here: https://www.verywellmind.com/how-to-write-a-psychology-case-study-2795722. But it also won’t be your standard English 125 essay.
I will need to do further research on the topic, because psychological analyses are generally reports from psychologists based on studies they’ve performed. My “study” is quite an inexact one, if you can even call it that. It is also just one example in a plethora. I am excited to explore other examples of emption in sports — I already have a few in mind. But I am slightly concerned about both reaching a proper conclusion if there’s one to reach, and the context I will need in order to present that conclusion.
I think it’s a challenge, but a good challenge, for me to take on this semester, in a topic that interests and confounds me. Because of that, I’m motivated to forge ahead with this project, pursuing every avenue possible to make it as strong of a transformation as I can.
Anyway, here are a few pictures of male athletes crying/showing emotion. Try to guess which ones are generally considered acceptable.