Struggle for individual survivals in adversity
This topic is chosen from To Live(1994) directed by Yimou Zhang.
Here are some questions can be discussed and written in paper:
How do you interpret the character development of Fugui who has changed from a dandy to a devoted father fighting for the survival of his family in adversity? What may have empowered him to persevere in spite of the fact that he lost both his son and daughter in addition to others? What does his change mean in cultural studies? What is your interpretation of his approach to tough issues?
REQUIREMENTS: The emphasis is on probing key issues in cultural studies RATHER THAN summaries/descriptions of the plot(s), since your reader has watched the film(s). The goal is to develop your critical thinking by engaging in debates through the exercise of interpretive analyses.
1. Your paper needs to have a clear and comprehensive thesis as indicated in your title of the paper rather than the name of the film, and STATE YOUR THESIS in your opening paragraph. Your paper is analyrical in nature, which means you have to ADDRESS THE CONFLICTING ISSUES by going beyond the surface meaning as observe in the film(s).
2. Make sure you develop YOUR ARGUMENT on the specific issue THROUGH REASONS instead of either relying on borrowed powers of ideologies or retelling the plot(s) of the film(s). Your DESCRIPTIVE PART of the film(s) SHOULD NOT BE over 1/5 of your paper length.
3. You have to CONNECT THE DOTS so that you present a coherent analysis rather than a cluster of unrelated viewpoints. If you choose a topic on the compare and contrast films, you have to probe the meaning of similarity and difference beyond the surface, such as what the similarity and difference signify and why they are important in cultural studies.
4. Substantiate your statement with examples from the film(s) with full documentations.
Highlight your analytical exploration with the newly gained knowledge in this course instead of taking stereotypical notions for granted.
5. The quality of a paper is based on
a) IN-DEPTH ANALYSES of certain issues of the FILM(s) in the cultural context
b) EFFECTIVE expressions of the CONVINCING argument beyond the surface meaning
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