(...with links to student papers published on Dr. Nighan's web pages as models)
1-Beginning with the academic year, 2008-2009 the senior thesis will no longer be a 7-8 page paper. In keeping with college guidelines, students will write two papers, each five pages long. One will be submitted in the Fall, the other in the Spring according to the due dates below or those specified by your instructor.
2-The "redo" policy for grades below a C has been changed. As with colleges, the initial grade you receive on the paper will be the final grade for that assignment. Students are therefore urged to meet due dates on time and conference with instructors as needed.
3-SPECIFICATIONS: THE ENGLISH DEPARTMENT REGARDS INTELLECTUAL HONESTY AS A HALLMARK OF A MORALLY EDUCATED PERSON. PLEASE SEE THE COURSE SYLLABUS AND STUDENT HANDBOOK FOR THE STATEMENT ON PLAGIARISM: Please note therefore that effective for the academic year 2006-2007, all papers will be submitted to turnitin.com as a mandatory requirement. The Student Handbook and course syllabus provide additional details regarding plagiarism, including its definition, scope and academic and / or administrative penalties when detected.
TERM PAPER FOR JUNIORS. AS ABOVE THE PAPER WILL BE SUBMITTED TO TURNITIN.COM:
A-THE DUE DATES FOR PAPERS ASSIGNED IN DR. NIGHAN'S CLASSES ARE POSTED BELOW: HONORS BRITISH LITERATURE, GOTHIC FICTION AND TOLKIEN.
B--THE TOPICS ARE GENERALLY RESTRICTED TO THOSE POSTED FOR BRITISH LITERATURE, CLASSICAL LITERATURE, AND PHILOSOPHY FOR DR. NIGHAN'S STUDENTS
Matters include methods of quoting from primary and secondary sources, use of proper documentation methodologies (works cited page), proper margins and of course mechanical, grammatical and syntactical protocols. Formatting will be according to the MLA GUIDE TO RESEARCH, and the SJC STYLE GUIDE (on line version for how to construct a thesis statement). ALL PAPERS MUST BE SUBMITTED TO TURNITIN.COM.
1--The purpose of this paper is to develop those analytical, writing, research and critical thinking skills that a college teacher would expect you to have mastered, especially coming from a college preparatory school. Many years of alumni feedback has singled out skill in writing research papers as the most important 'legacy' the English Department bestowed...
2--The topics below have been selected by the English Department with those stipulations in mind. They are not thesis statements, but will be the basis for a thesis. Under the direction of your teachers, you will learn the basics of thesis statement construction, and the college library and Internet research skills needed to complete the project.
1. A (*) next to a topic indicates extra credit because it is especially difficult
2. Topics come mostly from materials covered in class, to be covered in class or in some way related to the course.
3. In all cases, the primary source (s) must be read first, and then secondary source research must be completed in a college library and/or our library. The SJC library has extensive resources, both books and journals.
4. Requirements and resources follow:
Reminder--be sure to xerox / printout all research materials--these must be submitted with the paper.
Part of your training will be an introduction to data base management conducted by the school librarian.
EXERCISES FOR THE INTERNET:
FOR AN EXCELLENT GUIDE TO USING SEARCH ENGINES, SEE TERRY GRAY'S SITE: CLICK HERE
6. The most significant problem encountered in the past has been time management. Late papers and requests for extensions usually center on three areas:
1. not turning in preliminary material
2. underestimating the amount of time needed to complete work
3. blaming the computer.....
(Computer matters will be adjudicated by Mr. Colvin, Director of Technology.)
5. Not knowing what to do next...stay in touch. Conferences are desirable and at times will be mandatory.
7. Individual phases of this project are graded unless otherwise specified. In the event of snow days or schedule changes, the work is due the next day
8. As noted, late work will be evaluated on an individual basis; points could be deducted. Falling behind is one of the most serious obstacles to success. Generally late work must have a serious reason such as illness and /or a validating emergency such as a car accident etc. Starting work a day before it is due is not a sufficient reason for lateness. You may be required to submit a time management outline of work completed prior to the circumstance leading to a request for an extension.
9. As the paper progresses, you will receive additional instructions in class. I am available before and after school. Other times can be scheduled as needed, including individual mandatory conferences. After each phase of the paper is completed, a 'reaction sheet' will be distributed outlining a class evaluation of the submitted work, and instructions for the next phase.
CLICK HERE TO READ 'THE GUNPOWDER PLOT AND MACBETH' BY
ROBERT BROONER, CLASS OF 2000, WHICH EARNED AN A GRADE.
See the Tables of content for British Literature, Gothic Fiction and
Shakespeare for additional posted student papers.
SENIOR DUE DATES FOR THE SECOND SEMESTER 2009:
DUE DATES: (Work for
Dr. Nighan's classes will be electronically submitted.)
SENIOR REQUIREMENTS--all work except the final product is submitted electronically via Microsoft Word sent as an attached file by Midnight on the due dates below...
|Topics open for selection-be prepared to justify the selection--form must be submitted||SEPT. 3|
|Final topic selection / instructor approval||SEPT. 16|
|Tentative thesis and supporting primary source quotes (graded)||SEPT. 17|
|Final thesis statement due (graded) with primary quotes and 1 secondary quote
from each of the 3 sources the paper must contain: one quote from a book (not on line), one from a Gale Group article, and one from an academic web page (.edu)-- MLA format needed.
|Draft Conferences ...an individual conference is mandatory||BY Oct. 29|
|FINAL COPY DUE INCLUDING ALL RESEARCH due to turnitin.com||NOV. 3|
DUE DATES FOR DR. NIGHAN'S HONORS BRITISH LITERATURE
CLASSES FIRST SEMESTER PAPER: 2009
ALL WORK EXCEPT THE FINAL PRODUCT WILL BE
SUBMITTED USING MICROSOFT WORD. THE FINAL
PRODUCT MUST BE SUBMITTED TO TURNITIN.COM.
JUNIOR HONORS BRITISH LITERATURE-QUARTER ONE
|thesis statement and primary source quotes from selected texts which are on homework central||Sept. 13|
|draft due||Sept. 24|
|final copy due to turnitin.||Oct. 9|
THE TOPICS ARE DERIVED FROM THREE BROAD AREAS OF LITERARY, HISTORICAL AND PHILOSOPHICAL INTEREST:
Classical literature and philosophy, World Literature, American Literature, British Literature, Gothic horror, Star Trek, Film in Literature, Feminism, Epic Hero, Shakespeare
JUNIORS: SEE YOUR INSTRUCTOR FOR TOPIC SELECTION.
(CLASSICAL LITERATURE, WORLD LITERATURE AND BRITISH LITERATURE)
1. Aristotle's definition of tragedy applied to_______?*
2. Plato's cave allegory and_____?*
3. Plato on poets*
4. The mimetic, pragmatic or expressive theory applied to______?*
5. The character of Achilles in the Iliad as a prototype of________?*
6-The Scop's sense of irony in Beowulf
7--tracing alliteration patterns
8--Beowulf and ring structure
9--the dynamics of the first fight
10--the dynamics of the second fight
11--the dynamics of the third fight
12--the role of the monsters
13--the imagination of the scop
14--the role of Unferth
15--Beowulf as hero
16--archetypes in Beowulf
17--Christian influences in the poem
18--pagan influences in the poem
19--the role of the scop in the poem
20--allusions to the Old Test. in the poem
21--allusions to the New Test. in the poem
22--the scop’s use of irony
25--methods for creating suspense
26--the motif of time in the poem
27--the motif of weapons in the poem
28--the poet’s use of personification
29--the comitatus code
30--paradox in Anglo-Saxon society
31--Beowulf and archeology
32--the Brecca episode
33--the role of women in Beowulf
34--humor in Beowulf
35--dramatic point of view in Beowulf
36--Hrothgar as a father figure
37--the unique importance of the second fight
38--the use of hyperbole in the poem
39--celebrations and their relationship to the poem
40--dramatic action from Grendel’s point of view
41--dramatic action from Grendel’s mother’s point of view
42--dramatic action from the dragon’s point of view
43--how Beowulf is a didactic poem
44--how the poem is mimetic
45--how the poem is expressive
46--how the poem is pragmatic
47--setting in Beowulf
48--the tone in Beowulf
49--Beowulf's moral philosophy
50--the importance of oral tradition in Beowulf
51--the creatures as anthropomorphic
52--the effects of Beowulf's preparation for fight one or two or three--pagan view
53--the effects of Beowulf's preparation for fight one or two or three--Christian sense
SEVENTEENTH CENTURY LITERATURE:
97. Biblical allusions in Book IX of Paradise Lost
98. Epic characteristics of Book I of Paradise Lost
99. The metaphysical style
100. Donne and conceit
101. Donne and TS Eliot
102. The style of the Cavalier poets
103. Marvell as a transition poet
104. Milton's literary beliefs
105. Milton's political beliefs and the chain of being
106. Satan's characteristics in Paradise Lost
107. Milton's use of soliloquy in Paradise Lost
108. Who is the hero of Paradise Lost? (see also the romantics)*
109. Iago and Satan
110. The mind matter dualism
111. Induction vs. deduction
EIGHTEENTH CENTURY NEO-CLASSICAL LITERATURE
112. Irony and satire in Book IV of Gulliver's Travels
113. The mock epic characteristics of The Rape of the Lock
114. Pope's translation of the Iliad and The Rape of the Lock
115. Swift's style in A Modest Proposal
116. A Modest Proposal and the historical and economic background*
117. The theme of madness in Gulliver's Travels
118. The role of the persona in Swift
119. Aristotle's Golden Mean and Swift
120. Pope's Essay on Man and mimeticism*
121. Pope's Essay on Criticism and neo-classical theory
ROMANTIC PERIOD AND GOTHIC HORROR LITERATURE
122. The influence of Plato in the romantic period*
123. Wordsworth's theory of poetry in the Preface as applied to _______?
124. Nature in Tintern Abbey and My Heart Leaps UP
125. Plato's influence on the Intimations Ode by Wordsworth
126. Coleridge's theory of the imagination in the Biographia Literaria
127. Coleridge's Kubla Khan and the secondary imagination
128. Supernatural imagery in Rime of the Ancient Mariner
129. Coleridge, opium and creativity--must use DeQuincy*
130. The structure of Rime of the Ancient Mariner
131. The Byronic Hero in Manfred
132. Byron--romantic or neo-classicist?
133. Shelley's literary theory and the Defense of Poetry as applied to____?
134. Shelley's artistic development in Hymn to Intellectual Beauty and Ode to the West Wind
135. Keats' literary theory from his letters
136. Paradox in Ode on a Grecian Urn
137. Keats' literary theory in Eve of St. Agnes
138. The influence of the French Revolution on the Romantic period
139. Matthew Gregory Lewis' concept of horror and sensationalism in THE MONK.
140. The Influence of the French Revolution on THE MONK
141. THE MONK and Church dogma
142. FRANKENSTEIN and the psychology of the Romantic ego
143. The autobiographical significance of FRANKENSTEIN
144. The influence of PARADISE LOST on FRANKENSTEIN
145. Medical science and FRANKENSTEIN
146. The role of women in FRANKENSTEIN
147. Dream psychology and FRANKENSTEIN
148. Gender ambiguities in DRACULA
149. What Dracula represents?
150. Science and technology in DRACULA and FRANKENSTEIN
151. The influence of Shakespeare on DRACULA or FRANKENSTEIN or THE MONK
152. The influence of Colerdige on DRACULA or FRANKENSTEIN or THE MONK
VICTORIAN PERIOD / MODERN PERIOD INLUDING STAR TREK:
153. The Arnold - Huxley debate on education
154. Darwin's influence on Victorian literature
155. Browning and the dramatic monologue
156. A Canticle for Leibowitz
157. Henry James and the ghostly tales
158. What is the source of evil in THE TURN OF THE SCREW?
159. The moral and mental stability of the governess in THE TURN OF THE SCREW
160. The innocent or guilt of the children in THE TURN OF THE SCREW.
161. The role of religion in Star Trek
162. Enlightenment philosophy in Star Trek
163. Star Trek as mimetic of American cultural values
164. Roddenberry's vision in the post Roddenberry series: (DS-9 and Voyager).
165. The influence of Shakespeare on Star Trek
166. Imperfections in the Star Trek universe
167. Nominalism and Realism in Star Trek
168. Star Trek's vision of Utopia
169. The Humanist Interview's role in the Star Trek universe
170. The ethics of Star Trek
171. The influence of__________(a philosopher) on Star Trek
172. The novels of Dan Brown: Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons--topic can be determined
FEMINISM AND WOMENS' STUDIES / WORLD LITERATURE, and TOLKIEN
173. The role / portrayal of women in Dracula
174. How male authors portray female characters
175. Analyze a particular text, determining whether that text reflects a female or male gender perspective
176. Does the gender of an author effect the "truth" revealed in a text?
177. Defining what is the "female gothic".
178. Shakespeare's women: prisoners of gender? Select: Ophelia, Gertrude, Emilia, Desdemona, Lady Macbeth, Cordelia
179. Any other topic on this page that lends itself to a feminist reading could be selected with instructor approval.
180.Magical Realism in Marquez as a tool for understanding culture.
181. Magical Realism in Morrison as an understanding of community. (Beloved)
182. Music as the modern myth.
183. The saving role of the feminine in Beloved.
184. Beloved and the community: finding the modem myth.
185. Masculine and feminine archetypes in Beloved.
186. Sacrifice as necessary for redemption in Beloved.
187. The role of the matriarch in Like Waterfor Chocolate.
188. Food as a symbol in Like Waterfor Chocolate.
189. The destructive and/or creative roles of the three women in Beloved.
190. The redemptive power of the community in Beloved.
191. Magical Realism as it affects time. (Beloved)
192. Fate vs. Free-Will in the modem novel. (Like Waterfor Chocolate, Love in the Time of Cholera, Beloved)
193. Violence in the modem novel as a tool for combating desensitization. (Beloved)
194. THE FOLLOWING TOPICS (EACH A SEPARATE CHOICE) MAY BE USED FOR TOLKIEN:
195. Washington Irving's short stories: Commentaries on Materialism and Industrialism
196. Seclusion and Emily Dickinson
197. The Synthesis of Moral Arguments in Henry David Thoreau's Civil Disobedience
198. Frederick Douglass: Slavery as a corrupting influence on slave owners and their religion
199. The Role of the Individual in Walt Whitman's Poetry
200. Edgar Allan Poe's Fiction as Autobiography
201. Edgar Allan Poe and the Theme of Entombment
202. Pearl as an Agent of Redemption in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter
203. Puritan Hypocrisy in Nathaniel Hawthorne's writings
204. Symbolic Natural Imagery in the Poems of Robert Frost
205. Santiago as a Code Hero in The Old Man and the Sea
206 Color Symbolism in The Great Gatsby
207. The Great Gatsby: The Corruption of the American Dream
208. Mark Twain's use of satire
209. Isolation leading to destruction in Poe's writings
210. Poe's use of the seven deadly sins
211. Walt Whitman's politics through his writings
212. A comparison of the Fall of the House of Usher and the House of the Seven Gables
213. Hawthorne's conception of original sin in his writings
214. Hawthorne's depiction of humanity's quest to play God
215. The role of sunshine in Hawthorne's writings
216. Guilt and redemption in The Scarlet Letter
217. Biblical allusions in The Old Man and the Sea
218. Thoreau's impact on Gandhi
219. The influence of music on Langston Hughes's writings
220. Langston Hughes's view of equality
221. Isolation's effect in Hawthorne's writing
222. A comparison of Phoebe and Pearl
223. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's sense of the individual
224. The role of the seven deadly sins in Hawthorne's writings
225. T.S. Eliot's "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"
226. Frederick Douglass's view of Christianity and slavery
227. Ernest Hemingway's use of nature
228. Walt Whitman's Transcendentalism
229. Does Chillingworth find redemption?
230. Abraham Lincoln's philosophical underpinnings
231. J.D. Salinger and isolation Anne Bradstreet's Puritanism
232. F. Scott Fitzgerald's commentaries on materialism
233. Jane Austen’s use of humor to portray women’s roles.
234. Edith Wharton’s use of characterization to satirize society in The House of Mirth.
235. Characterization in the fiction of Charles Dickens
236. Character development and spiritual journey in the work of Graham Greene (through either The Power and the Glory, or A Burnt out Case)
237. Themes in Thornton Wilder’s Our Town
238. Symbolism and imagery (to express theme) in the work of Toni Morrison (possible novels for focus: The Bluest Eye; Beloved; Jazz)
239. Role of Hispanic-American women’s literature in the American canon (possible authors to study: Sandra Cisneros, Julia Alvarez)
240. The political as personal in the work of Maya Angelou (possible areas of focus: poetry; autobiography-I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings)
241. Human responses to hardship through characterization in John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath
242. Political symbolism in the works of Dr. Seuss (Theodore Seuss Geisel)
243. Imagery in the poetry of Pablo Neruda
244. Political as personal in the work of Pablo Neruda
245. The use of symbolism/ expression of metaphysical through the physical in Yasunari Kawabata’s short stories in First Snow on Fuji.
246. Critique of popular consumer culture through characterization in Jonathan Franzen’s The Corrections
247. Historical fiction: Analysis of the Book of Genesis, through Anita Diamant’s fictional The Red Tent
248. Political commentary through characterization in Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead.
249. Character development in the work of Jamaica Kincaid
250. Symbolism in the poetry of Stanley Kunitz
251. Historical fiction: through characterization in The Power of One
252. Development of American identity through characterization in Julia Alvarez’s How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents versus Maxine Hong Kingston’s The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts
253. In the Time of Butterflies, by Julia Alvarez, as historical fiction
254. American identity and characterization through historical fiction of Ralph Ellison: The Invisible Man
255. Influence of gender on relationship in Virginia Woolfe’s To the Lighthouse.
256. Literary allusion: characterization through internal conflict in Michael Cunningham’s The Hours, as an allusion to Virginia Woolfe’s Mrs. Dalloway.
257. Feminist symbolism in the poetry of Marge Piercy
258. Influence of politics on relationship in Ha Jin’s Waiting
259. Aeneas, Dido, Lancelot, and Elaine or The Lady of Shalott
260. Tragic Love: Romeo and Juliet v. Aeneas and Dido
261. Stoicism in The Aeneid
262. Platos' Allegory of the Cave and Aeneas' Descent into the Underworld
263. Juno in The Aeneid: what happens when a goddess struggles against fate
264. Twins in Epic Literature: Romulus and Remus v.Balin and Balan
265. Prophecy in Epic Literature
266. The Underworld in Epic Literature
267. Joseph Campbell and the Hero Archetype
268. Dido and Carthage--Love as a Destroyer
269. The Judgment of Paris and Helen's Role in The Iliad and The Aeneid
270. Dido and Creusa in The Aeneid
271. Tennyson's Ulysses and the Hero Archetype
272. Tennyson's Arthur v. Malory's Arthur
273. Chaucerian Feminism: The Loathly Lady in the Wife of Bath's Tale
274. Sinon the Greek, Ulysses (or the Pardoner)--the role of the Trickster in The Aeneid
275. Zora Neale Hurston: Moses v. Janie (Moses, Man of the Mountain v. Their Eyes Were Watching God)
276. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and African-American Literary Theory
277. Maneaters--Polyphemos and Grendel
For the Iliad:
278. The shield of Achilles
279. The role of the gods in the Iliad
280. The struggles between the gods in the Iliad
281. Fate in the Iliad
282. Achilles' fight with the river (and Joseph Campbell)
283. The role of women in the Iliad
284. Athena as Achilles' Beatrice
285. The relationship between Achilles and Patroklos
286. Hector as epic hero
287. Odysseus in the Iliad
288. The other Greek champions
289. Agamemnon as a leader
290. Honor or Virtue in the Iliad
291. quality vs. quantity in the Iliad
292. Patroklos' concept of Honor or Virtue
293. Hector's concept of Honor or Virtue
294. Agamemnon's concept Honor or Virtue
295. Hospitality in the Iliad
For the Inferno or Divine Comedy:
296. The role of Grace in the Comedy
297. Dante's understanding of violence
298. Dante's disdain for fraud
299. Dante's understanding of the soul
300. The architecture of the underworld
301. The role of mythological creatures in the underworld
302. Virgil's role in the Comedy
303. Poetry's role in the Comedy
304. What has Dante done to romantic love?
305. Dido v. Beatrice: comparing the Aeneid and the Comedy
306. Aristotle's Poetics and the Divine Comedy
307. The seven deadly sins and the Divine Comedy
308. Aeneas, Paul, and Dante: the Aeneid, the Bible, and the Inferno or the Divine Comedy
FILM AS LITERATURE:
309.Republican Ideology, Reganism and Rambo: First Blood, Part II
310.Liberal Ideology and Film: Dances With Wolves, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Planet of the Apes
311.Feminism and film: Thelma and Louise
312. Masculinity and film: Fight Club, films of John Wayne, Schwarzenegger, Die Hard
313. The Scopes-Monkey trial, Evolution and Planet of the Apes
314.Minorities, Racism and Civil Rights: Planet of the Apes
315. Images of Women in Film: Pretty Woman
316. Anti-Capitalism, the working world, and Film: Fight Club, Office Space, The Matrix
317. The “Modern” Hero in Batman
318. The Patriarch and the Family: The Godfather Trilogy
319. Capitalism and business and The Godfather Trilogy
320. Views of Race in Spike Lee’s films: He Got Game, Do the Right Thing, Bamboozled
321.Black Masculinity and Urban Life: Boyz N the Hood, Menace II Society
322. Hollywood’s Treatment of William Shakespeare before 1990
323. Hollywood’s Treatment of William Shakespeare since 1990
324. Vietnam War and Film
325. The Counterrevolution and film
326. A Comparison: Images of Batman and Superman in film, past and present
327. Technology vs. Humanity: Images in Blade Runner, The Matrix, The Terminator Series, RoboCop
328. The Civil Rights Movement and X-Men and X2: X-Men United, and the comic book X-Men
329. Images of Hispanics in Film
330. The Ambiguous and Ambivalent Hero: Dirty Harry, The Unforgiven The films of Clint Eastwood
331. “The Godfather” Trilogy and Religion
332. The Role of Women in “The Godfather” Trilogy
333. The Image of African-America on Film (from silent movies to today)
334. The Image of Labor in American Film
335. The Image of America in Foreign Film (at least five films)
336. The Changing Image of Minorities in Hollywood Film
337. Tolkien's concept of good and evil in The Lord of the Rings
338.. Martin Scorcese and the Hollywood Attack on American Morals