Last Announcement

May 14, 2019

Good news – your deadline has been extended to 10:00am on Sunday, May 19th! This means you should email me your Final Draft of Essay 3 no later than 10:00am on Sunday May 19th. Please be sure to check the syllabus for proper emailing submission guidelines! If you would like feedback on your final draft please specify in your email!

Last Day Announcements

May 14, 2019

Good news – your deadline has been extended to 6:00pm on Thursday, May 16th. If I receive 1 more evaluation before the deadline I will extend it to Sunday, May 19th!

Looking forward to seeing you all in class today.


May 9, 2019

  1. For class on Thursday, May 9th, please bring a copy of your newest draft whether electronic or hard copy as we will be working with it closely in class
  2. Your deadline is currently 4:30pm on Tuesday, May 14th. If I receive 5 more course evaluations before class on Tuesday, May 14th, I will extend the deadline to 6:00pm on Thursday, May 16th.

Exercise 3.3

May 2, 2019

Due by Thursday, May 9th at 4:30pm

Describe your revision plan for your scholarly research essay. List at least the next three steps you need to take, explaining why you must take each step. Post the steps you intend to take as a comment to this post.

I hope everyone had a good spring break! We are officially in the final stretch! I just wanted to send an update as to what to expect for the rest of the semester.

  1. Please come to class today, Tuesday April 30th prepared having read the first 12 pages of Stating What Others Are Saying (available on the website).
  2. If possible, try to bring in some of the source material you are considering using! I will be giving you time to engage with it in class. You should also bring a writing device.
  3. Your rough draft of Paper 3 is due in class in hard copy Thursday, May 2nd.
  4. For class on Tuesday, May 7th please come prepared having finished reading Stating What Others Are Saying (available on the website).
  5. There will be no other readings due for the rest of the semester!
  6. Exercise 3.3 is due Thursday, May 8th!
  7. Course Evaluations are up! As you are aware, your final paper is due in hard copy on May 14th, HOWEVER, if I get 10 course evaluations prior to May 14th, I will extend the deadline to Thursday May 16th and it may be submitted electronically. Course evaluations can be found:
  8. Please remember that if you have not attended a 15 minute meeting with me yet you must do so before the end of the semester!
  9. See you all soon.

Upcoming Announcements

April 18, 2019

Hi all,

As we head into the final stretch I just want to remind you of a few things:

  1. Please bring a writing device – either your laptop, your tablet, or a notebook and pencil and your sources to class today, Thursday 4/18!
  2. Your rough/formal draft of essay 3 is due THURSDAY May 2nd. Please bring TWO HARDCOPIES to class on Thursday, May 2nd.
  3. Exercise 3.2 is due on the website before class TODAY, Thursday, 4/18

See you later!

Exercise 3.2

April 11, 2019

The goal of this exercise is to clarify the central question of your scholarly research essay by problematizing your exhibit

Due by 1:30 p.m. Thursday, April 18th

Review the five ways of identifying an intellectual or interpretive problem taught in class. You will need to conduct preliminary research on your exhibit and also analyze it in order to determine the main question you want to explore in your scholarly research essay. Therefore, make sure to look up existing opinions about your film. Find out how the film is categorized as a genre and how that genre is define. Watch your film before our next class and take careful notes on patterns and anomalies you observe. You will use these observations and your preliminary research to create a clear, focused research question for your scholarly research essay.

Example 1

Latoya Peterson was motivated to write her essay about Kanyé West’s “Monster” music video because she noticed that the existing criticism of the music video seemed to overlook an important pattern in the music video: (nearly) all the dead women were white whereas all the black/brown women were depicted as monsters. Therefore, the central question of her essay is: What does this pattern reveal about cultural attitudes towards white women and women of color?

Example 2

A past student noticed that central female characters in the animated film Inside Out seemed to be based on common female stereotypes yet the film was universally praised as a feminist masterpiece. Therefore, in her research essay, she asked: Do the stereotypical depictions of Joy and Sadness undermine the film’s reputation as a “feminist” film?

  1. Please remember that your Essay 2 is due to me in HARD Copy in class. Each day it is late starting at the end of class it is marked down 1/3 of a letter grade
  2. Your homework, Exercise 3.1 is due Thursday, April 11th before class time.
  3. Please bring a computer or tablet or fully charged phone to class with you on Thursday, as we will be using them.
  4. On Tuesday April 16th, we will meet in the Rosenthal Library at 4:40pm in room 225. To get to room 225 in the library you enter the library through the main doors (this means you must have an active QC ID Card).
  5. On Tuesday April 16th, all students are expected to stay for the whole class time as we will be using the “conference group time” to do research. Please make proper arrangements.
  6. The Zero Draft for Essay 3 has been cancelled. Instead Exercise 3.2 is due Thursday, April 18th before class time.

Exercise 3.1

April 9, 2019

The goal of this exercise is to identify two possible exhibits for your scholarly research essay

Due by 4:30 p.m. Thursday, April 11th

Review the assignment guidelines for Essay 3. Your exhibit can be:

  • a feature-length movie (like Last Lovers Left Alive or It)
  • a music video (like Kanyé West’s “Monster” music video or Taylor Swift’s “…Ready For It?” music video)
  • a documentary (like Grizzly Man or Super Size Me)
  • a short film between 10 and 30 minutes

As in Essay 2, you do not have to choose an exhibit that has an explicit monster; you may choose an exhibit that has an aspect that is conceptually monstrous. Whatever you choose, make sure it is something that you are genuinely interested in examining and writing about. Remember that, like Latoya Peterson, you will ultimately focus on and analyze specific aspects of your exhibit – not the “entire” exhibit!


List two film exhibits that you could possibly analyze for your scholarly research essay. Cite them using MLA style. Make sure that they are not the same type of film i.e. do not choose two movies or two music videos.

Essay 3 Assignment

April 9, 2019


Use a variety of contextual, theoretical, and argument sources to produce an insightful argument about the meaning, function, and significance of a specific “monstrous” element of a film of your selection. You should aim to explore a specific interpretive or intellectual problem evident in the film by closely analyzing the film itself and critically engaging with existing arguments about the film and theoretical “conversations” related to the film. Your essay should show familiarity with the work of experts and all sources should be documented using the MLA in-text citation method. A strong essay of this sort typically draws on no fewer than seven (7) sources.

In other words, you will be attempting an “intellectual review” of your selected film. To do so, you will need to situate your review within at least three contexts:

  • the socio-historical context i.e. you must consider the sociopolitical and historical factors that contribute to the exhibit’s popularity (or unpopularity).

  • the generic context i.e. you must evaluate the exhibit within the conventions of the particular genres that define it.

  • the existing map of opinion i.e. you must critically engage existing ideas about your exhibit in order to develop your own original viewpoints.

Continue to work on the goals from the first two assignments:

  • use the introduction to orient the reader and identify an intellectual problem embodied in an appropriate exhibit; formulate a strong main claim;
  • establish a clear motive;
  • maintain a coherent structure;
  • support your argument with evidence and reasons;
  • write in a fluent and clear style;
  • smoothly integrate argument and theoretical sources;
  • explain key terms;
  • offer an interesting and informative title.

Contextualize your exhibit by using sources to frame it within:

  •  a specific socio – historical context
  • a specific genre, class, or trend
  • a specific debate or scholarly conversation

Make sure that the stance of your argument is clear—that readers know where your essay stands in the existing conversation(s) about your exhibit.

Analyze pertinent aspects of your exhibit(s) in order to draw cogent conclusions. Offer an analysis of argument and theoretical sources, interpreting their central claims, evaluating their arguments, and explaining their significance in terms of your own claim.

Reflect on and complicate your argument: consider counter evidence, counter- interpretations, counterarguments, anomalies, and draw out implications.

Have an intriguing and informative title.

Adhere to all relevant formatting guidelines described in the course syllabus.

The final draft must be between 1800 and 2000 words