People of the Earth (ANTH 2303): Archaeology and the MediaWriting
Assignment

Choose ONE of these popular news stories about archaeology and write an essay on the way this story creates public
perceptions of archaeology and biological anthropology.

Topic A.What Lies Beneath New High-Tech Images Reveal Monuments Buried Under Stonehenge Landscape. Author: Ed Caesar. Source:
Smithsonian Magazine.

Topic B.Hot Stew in the Ice Age? Evidence Shows Neanderthals Boiled Food. Author: Dan Vergano. Source: National Geographic.

PDF copies of these articles are on Blackboard in the “Course Documents” section.

Your essay should be:
• Turned in electronically via Blackboard before 11am onTuesday March 15th, 2016. See class website for detailed
instructions on how to use Turn It In.
• 3-to-5 pages of text, double spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point font; a references cited section is not necessary but
you should cite direct quotes like so: (Caesar, p33)
• Follow a clear structure with an introduction, background, analyses, discussion, and conclusion. Begin your essay
with a clearly written thesis statement.

Prompting Questions. The following are the types of questions you should be answering in the text of your essay:

1.What qualities does the author want the reader to attribute to the archaeologists and the archaeological evidence or site
discussed in the article, and how have they done it?

2. How did the author of the article approach the topic differently than the author of your text book and what do you think
accounts for these differences?

3.What role do academic qualifications of the people involved in the article, both the author and the people discussed or
quoted, play in the piece?

4. What do you think the people in this story would say the value of archaeology is to the modern world?

5. How would you improve this article if you were the author?

Things to avoid:
• Bullet points. The questions listed above are meant to guide the structure of your essay. Do not simply bullet point
list answers to these questions.
• Poor grammarand informal language. Read your essay aloud to catch errors and have someone else read it over. This is
an academic paper. Use a formal and authoritative tone.
• Unintended plagiarism. We expect that you will use information from this news article and your textbook in your
answer, but we also expect you to attribute direct quotes to the source.
• Vagueness. It is possible to write an essay is that has correct information in it, but is nonetheless poor
scholarship because it is vague and contains statement that are unsupported by evidence. Be specific and make a reasoned,
supported argument in your essay.

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