OBJECTIVE Your purpose in this assignment is multi-fold: a) to learn skills of research using the SJSU library system, including its online search engines; b) to learn to properly cite a scholarly article, both in the text of your essay and in a works cited list; c) to improve skills of writing; and d) to gain insight into an important film by engaging a peer-reviewed, scholarly article on this film.
GUIDELINES We will screen PSYCHO (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) the week of February 11 to help us think about narrative. In the week+ after screening the movie you will complete this assignment in several steps:
First, you will use the MLK Library’s online article search engines (or Google Scholar, etc.) to locate one and only one post-1980, peer-reviewed, scholarly feature article on this film. Most academic journals, whether printed or online, will feature three to four articles and a handful of reviews and shorter pieces (editorials, for instance). For this assignment, you need to track down one of the longer, scholarly “feature” articles. Depending on the search engine you’re using, you may be able to make sure the article is peer-reviewed by clicking on this option when searching. (If not, you could google the journal to determine whether it’s peer-reivewed and/or ask me.) When researching and selecting the article you will use, make sure it focuses on PSYCHO (1960). This movie has been analyzed from nearly every angle, so you shouldn’t have trouble finding one that interests you. IF YOU’VE ANY DOUBT, PLEASE RUN YOUR ARTICLE BY ME OR KYLE FOR APPROVAL.
Second, you will read the article and make note of its thesis (aka principal argument/objective) and main points. Academic writing is famous for being complicated and theoretical. Part of your job here is to comprehend the article, so that you may articulate it succinctly in your essay. This may necessitate re-reading.
Third, you will write your essay, devoting the first 2/3rds of the essay (roughly 2 pages) to giving a concise summary of the article, in which you highlight its thesis and main arguments. In the last 1/3rd of the essay (roughly one page), you will focus on how the article expands your critical understanding of PSYCHO. When screening this film we may not realize that it remains one of the most controversial, influential, and ground-breaking productions in movie history, Hollywood or otherwise. So we have much to learn from these articles.
Fourth, you will provide a complete and proper citation just below the last line of your essay. Proper citation is important and will be graded accordingly. See below for guidance on this. You may cite the article in-text with parenthetical citations (again, see below), but be sure not to quote large passages or quote much at all in this assignment; let your voice carry the day.
RESEARCH / CITATION Once at www.sjsu.edu, point the cursor over QUICK LINKS, and you will see KING LIBRARY. Once at the MLK site, you will see at the top a heading called FIND ARTICLES AND BOOKS. Point the cursor over it and select ARTICLES AND DATABASES. The two databases that will be of most use are FILM & TELEVISION LITERATURE INDEX WITH FULL TEXT and JSTOR, both of which you can locate alphabetically or by clicking on the FILM AND THEATRE subject link. Once in either search engine (F&TLIWFT or JSTOR), enter your search key words (psycho and hitchcock would be a good start, but you may have a specific interest), click on PEER-REVIEWED, ARTICLE, JOURNAL, ENGLISH, and FULL TEXT. This will generate plenty of articles that meet the requirements and that you can download onto your computer. AGAIN, THOUGH: IF YOU’VE ANY DOUBT, PLEASE RUN YOUR ARTICLE BY ME FOR APPROVAL.
Your objective here is to articulate the main points of the article in your voice, remember, but if you do paraphrase or quote a short passage from the article, please use MLA or APA parenthetical citations. Here is an example of parenthetical citation:
According to Maximilian M. Todd, “the relationship between object and subject is a testament to the struggles between the sexes” (Todd 94).
At the end of your essay, regardless of whether or not you quote the article, you must properly and completely cite this article, either in MLA or APA style. Here is an example of a full citation of a peer-reviewed article:
Nordhaus, William D. “After Kyoto: Alternative Mechanisms to Control Global Warming.” American Economic Review96.2 (2006): 31-39.
Note that “96” refers to the volume, as, in this case, the 96th year of this journal’s circulation; “2” refers to the issue in that year (in some cases, the issue is labeled by season, and you would cite it like this: “…Review 96 (Winter 2006): 31-39.”
FORMATTING 2-3 pages, double-spaced, 12-point font, and page numbers. MLA or APA parenthetical format (see above) and proper full citation just below essay required.
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