Guidelines for paper 1
Write an analytical interpretation of a specific topic (of your choice) on the film(s) screened in
this course without duplicating your presentation or your previous work. The format: double-line
spacing (except quotations), twelve-point font, and 3-4 pages in length. It is due by 3:00 pm on
3/3/2016 (Thursday). You submit your electronic version to the dropbox of “The first paper” on
D2L by 3:00 pm, and submit a hard copy before the class. Please make sure you get a message
that your uploading is successful, as late submissions will have 50% automatically deducted
from your grade.
• Develop a thoughtful thesis (as indicated in the title of your paper) through a wellorganized analysis of the film(s) by going below the surface meaning of the film(s)
• Generate a coherent analysis of the film(s) by connecting the dots as observed in the
film(s) and related works
• Address conflicting issues in the given work(s) to construct a convincing argument
• Substantiate the statement with specific examples drawn from the movie(s) and/or critical
• Explore the cinematic work(s) with newly gained knowledge in class discussions
• The descriptive part of the primary source should not be over 1/5 of your paper length
Use of reference:
• Make it identifiable for each reference in your paper that your reader can locate the
specific reference in your full documentation in your footnote or endnote
• Provide a full documentation of all reference you use and/or paraphrase either in the
footnote or endnote
ANY instances of plagiarism, intentional or otherwise, will result in automatic failure of
the assignment or course, and notification sent to the dean of your college. Plagiarism is
defined as the direct or indirect incorporation of ideas other than your own into your
paper without a proper academic citation or documentation. If you aren’t sure whether or
not something is plagiarism, the best thing to do is to cite it anyway. If you are not sure
about how to cite information properly, you need to come and talk to me.
Please keep in mind the assignment is to write an analytical paper rather than summarizing
the (plot of) film(s). Sample papers have been posted on D2L. If you want to find more about
the thesis statement, you can find detailed information in the power point presentation “Writing
Thesis Statement.” If you would like to know how to differentiate analysis from summary, you
can find concrete explanation in the power point presentation “Analysis, Paraphrase or
Summary” posted on D2L. If you would like to have potential topics of the paper, please inform
me as soon as possible.
If you have not yet got the idea for the first paper, here are some topics for you to consider. It is
important to think of related issues beyond the descriptive surface, which lays the basis to
generate a meaningful interpretation of the concerned work in the given context.
Possible topics to explore:
1. “Cultural critique:” What is the critique? What kind of a critical view does the
filmmaker try to make with the film? What do you think of developments of Cuiqiao
in the rural context? How do you interpret Cuiqiao’s position between “the rule of
farmers/peasants” and “the rule of officials?” What is the significance of the film in
the context of the 1980s?
2. Which part of Red Sorghum strikes your imagination? Is there any character
development of Ju’er and Grandpa? What does her/his change mean in the large
picture? How do you think of the drinking of the winery workers in the film? How do
you interpret the main claim made in the film? What does the cultural change mean
in a large picture?
3. What is the key problem in the family as observed in Pushing Hands? How is the
father-son relationship presented in the film? What may have complicated the given
relation? How do you see the significance of this issue in the large picture of
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Guidelines for paper 1
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