Feedback Form for WebCT Students: Click icon to the left for a form on which you can record your understanding of this material. (Password protected.) For further reading, we suggest "The Declining Middle," an essay in the Atlantic Monthly by Bob Kuttner. Kuttner's 1983 essay analyzes the effects of various economic changes in American life. (It is interesting to see, now, how much of what he said about these effects has come to be true.) For a lengthy and complex article that defines the causes of homosexuality, read Chandler Burr's "Homosexuality and Biology." Burr's article ( Atlantic , 1997) is also an excellent example of an essay that defines .
Once you get these likely ideas laid out on the diagram, you will then have to prove whether these are actually causes, or if they were incorrect guesses. Because brainstorming is an unscientific activity, many of the suspected causes do not actually have a relationship with the effect. It is also important to distinguish between causal relationships and correlation . Some of the ideas that initially make it to the fishbone diagram are related, but only through a third factor. For example, umbrellas and worms on sidewalks are linked, but only through another factor, namely rain.