instructions:Final paperFirst, chose a given topic that interests you, or-in the case you want to write on something else- that is relevant to the course.
Some of you have already a certain preference, based on past course expertise, prospective career, personal interest, etc. If you are looking for additional themes and subjects, skim through our syllabus for suggestions and inspirations. Then, take a look at a map, look at some books or films I have suggested, do a quick internet search, and ask yourself “would I like to write on this country / countries and this topic?”
It is very important to be happy about your research, as your productivity will be proportionate to your enthusiasm. You are encouraged to come discuss it with me or our TAs, before you embark on research, and also to keep returning with drafts as your argument evolves.
Then, construct an argument. To begin with, answer these important questions on your topic:
(a) W_h_a_t_ _d_o_ _y_o_u_ _k_n_o_w_ _a_b_o_u_t_ _i_t_?_ _(context, background, similar works, etc.)
(b) W_h_a_t_ _s_e_e_m_s_ _i_m_p_o_r_t_a_n_t_ _a_b_o_u_t_ _i_t_?_ _(which parts should you focus on more, which less? Why? What do you have to offer to your readers?)
(c) W_h_a_t_ _d_o_n_’t_ _y_o_u_ _k_n_o_w_ _a_b_o_u_t_ _i_t_?_ _[what do you need to know, and where can you look for it? (e.g. UTM or Robarts libraries, public libraries, the internet, etc.)]
The process to follow when writing includes the following steps:
(i) s_u_m_m_a_r_i_z_e_ _the primary text, event, o_r_ _p_o_s_i_t_i_o_n_ _you are dealing with
(ii) e_v_a_l_u_a_t_e_ _i_t_: what do y_o_u_ _think about it?
(iii) a_n_a_l_y_z_e_: break down the topic in its components, and examine how do they add up, whether they work, which ones are strong and where there are weaknesses to be found.
(iv) s_y_n_t_h_e_s_i_z_e_: connect and reconnect ideas about your topic; include your own observations and consider other perspectives to arrive at a conclusion about the topic’s persuasiveness.
Again, in choosing your topic, ask yourself:
▪ _Is the question interesting? To y_o_u_, and to your r_e_a_d_e_r_s_h_i_p_?
▪ _I_s_ _i_t_ _r_e_l_e_v_a_n_t_ _t_o_ _o_u_r_ _c_o_u_r_s_e_ _material? Also,
▪ _C_a_n_ _i_t_ _b_e_ _p_r_o_p_e_r_l_y_ _a_d_d_r_e_s_s_e_d_ _w_i_t_h_i_n_ _t_h_e_ _l_i_m_i_t_s_ _o_f_ _y_o_u_r_ _a_s_s_i_g_n_m_e_n_t_? (Especially if it is a short one—remember, this assignment calls for a 3,500-4,000 words paper, so adjust accordingly) 5_ _

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