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Preparation for Final Essay-101. Cultural Comparison. Which culture should I choose?. one you are attracted to one that is part of your heritage one whose homeland(s) you have visited the culture of a friend or family member one in the news today one that you fear

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which culture should i choose
Which culture should I choose?
  • one you are attracted to
  • one that is part of your heritage
  • one whose homeland(s) you have visited
  • the culture of a friend or family member
  • one in the news today
  • one that you fear
  • one you find incomprehensible
limit your comparison to one subject here are some ideas
Gender roles

Education

Standard of living

Health care

System of government

Communication styles

Values

Role of religion

Role of elders

Dating customs

Marriage styles (monogamy, polygamy, polyandry)

Family style (nuclear, extended, cohabitation, single parent, gay and lesbian)

Diversity

Racism

Limit your comparison to one subject. Here are some ideas:
example limited topic chinese and italian marriage customs
ExampleLimited topicChinese and Italian Marriage Customs

Points of Comparison

  • Role of the families
  • Use of matchmakers
  • Role of the bride

(adapted from) Gadda, George, and Faye Peitzman. Teaching Analytical Writing. UCLA Publishing 1988.

example thesis a unifying insight
ExampleThesis—a unifying insight

Unacceptable:

  • This essay will compare the marriage customs of Southern Italians and Chinese in order to show how much alike the two countries’ customs are.

Acceptable:

  • In exploring the traditional courtship and matrimonial customs of Chinese and Southern Italians, one will discover that marriages are not always the bond between two people, but rather an alliance between two families.

Gadda, George, and Faye Peitzman. Teaching Analytical Writing. UCLA Publishing 1988.

research journal
Research Journal
  • Exploratory freewriting and clustering
  • Questions—both your questions, as they arise, and your classmates’ questions generated later during this activity
  • Preliminary outline
  • Research plan
  • Research notes
  • List of sources (including the information you will need for your Works Cited page)
  • Tentative thesis and outline
freewriting clustering
Freewriting & Clustering
  • Your in-class journal entry is an example of exploratory freewriting. You can perform guided freewriting (freewriting on a specified topic) to explore possible points of comparison, as often as necessary.
  • You can also freewrite about difficult or striking ideas as you discover them in your source materials, in order to gain a better understanding of them or relate them to other ideas.
preliminary outline
Preliminary Outline
  • This will evolve as your paper grows.
  • It must include the limited subject and points of comparison.
tips for good research notes
Tips for Good Research Notes
  • Limit each note to one piece of information and use a separate page for each source.
  • Include the source with each page and the relevant page numbers for each note, so you will have the necessary information for your in-text citations and Works Cited page.
  • Organize your notes under your outline headings.
  • Identify your own comments and conclusions to avoid confusing them with material from sources.
research plan assign a to be completed by date to each item on the list below
1. Freewrite to identify goals and resources.

2. Write a preliminary outline that consists of your limited subject and points of comparison.

3. Identify print and electronic resources and prepare a working bibliography.

4. Read print and electronic sources and write notes, summaries, and comments.

5. Create a tentative thesis and a unifying statement for each point of comparison; then, write a rough draft.

6. Get peer feedback and create a Works Cited list.

7. Revise paper. Check citations and list of Works Cited.

8. Proofread paper.

Paper due: TBA

Research Plan: Assign a “to be completed by” date to each item on the list below.
list of sources
List of Sources

Refer to the MLA section in your handbook to find the appropriate format for each type of source.

Possible sources for this topic: cultural encyclopedias; other reference books on cultures and countries/area studies; relevant academic journals (culture and area studies, cultural geography); substantive periodicals (e.g., National Geographic); Internet edu, org, and gov sites; interviews with members of the culture; documentary films

Note: To find articles in periodicals, consult databases such as ProQuest and subject indexes such as the Social Science Index, available at libraries. Some subscription databases are available online to library card holders. A number of quality articles may be found in other online databases.

unacceptable sources
Unacceptable Sources
  • Internet “com” sites
  • Newspapers
  • Movies (commercial “Hollywood type”)
  • Popular or sensational periodicals

(See the handout on distinguishing types of periodicals.)

tentative thesis and outline
Tentative Thesis and Outline

This consists of three parts:

  • your limited topic,
  • the insight that will unify your paper,
  • and the unifying statements for each point of comparison.
example tentative thesis and outline
ExampleTentative Thesis and Outline

Limited topic:Chinese and Italian Marriage Customs

Thesis: In exploring the traditional courtship and matrimonial customs of Chinese and Southern Italians, one will discover that marriages are not always the bond between two people, but rather an alliance between two families.

Unifying Statements for Points of Comparison

  • Role of families: Marriages in the two countries are carried out by “family design.”
  • Use of matchmakers: The Chinese matchmaker, reconciling differences between the families, closely resembles the ambasciatrice associated with Italian weddings.
  • Role of the bride: Whereas American brides seem to be placed upon a pedestal, those in China and Southern Italy are of secondary importance—secondary to the family.
activity questions
ActivityQuestions

1. At the top of a sheet of paper, write the limited subject of your comparison.

Example:

Catalan and American Gender Roles

2. Pass your paper to the person on your right. You will write a question on every classmate’s paper until yours comes around again.

paper requirements
Paper Requirements
  • 3-5 word-processed pages (three full pages minimum for full credit!)
  • 12 point plain font
  • 1” margins
  • MLA style of documentation (in-text citations and Works Cited page)
  • at least three sources
  • point by point pattern of organization
point by point comparison
Point by Point Comparison
  • Introduction (attention getter+ background information + thesis)

Points of Comparison Subject (marriage customs)

  • Role of the families: Chinese/Italian
  • Use of matchmakers: Chinese/Italian
  • Role of the bride: Chinese/Italian

Note: The discussion of a single point could span several paragraphs.

  • Conclusion
paper timeline doesn t include other class activities
Paper Timeline (doesn’t include other class activities)
  • Discuss research journal and assignment requirements. Write questions for journal.
  • Write research journal entry in class. Share research plans and preliminary outlines.
  • Share resources and strategies.
  • Peer response to rough draft
  • Peer edit second draft (including Works Cited page)
  • Paper due

Dates to be inserted in class.