research paper assignment

This research paper assignment brings together your skill set and the study trips and the course theme of revolution. Your paper will focus on a revolutionary artifact (image, text, streetscape, object, piece of art, sound, architecture, etc.) you gather from your study trip. (Athens folks have these already.) You’ll do the library research groundwork to find out about your artifact, put it in context as a revolutionary artifact (why revolutionary? how?), find and summarize a scholarly conversation about the artifact, describe what arguments scholars are advancing (they say), and then add your voice to the conversation (I say), all in eight to ten pages. We’ll work on those over the next six weeks.

  • Find and document your revolutionary artifact
    • Think about how something is revolutionary or represents a revolutionary experience or moment or story or history.
    • Take several good photos, gather all the information you can on site.
    • Maybe gather three or four different possible artifacts, so you’ll have good options for working with one that can sustain close reading and explanation, about which there is some scholarly discussion, and about which you can say something that your readers will find useful.
  • Athens folks have something already. Or you can find something from another study trip (Cowpens, DC, Memphis).


With librarians and archivists in the library

Week 1 (this week Mar 19-20) – revolutionary artifact set, begin searching for information to frame it and scholarly discourse about it.

Revolutionary artifact document due in the proper folder Friday 3/22 at 5pm.

Week 2  (Mar 26-27)— annotated bibliography about the scholarly conversation surrounding the revolutionary artifact. We can imagine between 10 and 20 items; half of those annotated with some care.
Annotated bibliography about your revolutionary artifact document due in the proper folder Friday 3/29 at 5pm.

Week 3  (Apr 2-3) — further digging into the scholarly conversation; summarize and explain what the scholarly conversation is doing (“they say”).
Framing of your artifact, summaries of the scholarly conversation in good prose, full bibliography in a document due in the proper folder Friday 4/5 at 5pm.

With fellows (in their roles as writing tutors) and faculty in one-on-one meetings.

Week 4  (Apr 9-10) — what’s my claim? Insert myself into that scholarly conversation with a claim, argument, refutation, further extension, etc. (“I say”).
Required meetings with Fellows one-on-one in the writing center this week!
The draft text from the previous week, now with the addition of your claim, argument, refutation, extension, better questions, etc. in good prose in a document due in the proper folder Friday 4/12 at 5pm.

Weeks 5, 6 — full draft, tidy up, peer review and revision work with writing tutors, faculty. Details to follow once we see how things are going. But expect at least three required one-on-ones with fellows and two with faculty before May 3.

Final version of your research paper due Friday May 3 at 5pm. Here.

Everything goes in these folders.