Politics 124 Fall 2003
For the final paper I want you to investigate the origins, evolution, and meaning(s) of a patriotic ritual (e.g., the reciting of the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools or the singing of the Star Spangled Banner at sporting events), day of commemoration (e.g., Memorial Day or Veterans Day) or monument or memorial (e.g., Mount Rushmore, Statue of Liberty, or the U.S. Marine Corps Memorial). Unlike the previous papers, this paper will be based on independent research rather than classroom texts, though, of course, linking your project where possible to course readings is desirable. For models of the sort of research you will want to carry out, you might reread Cecilia O'Leary's chapters on the origins of the Pledge of Allegiance and Glassberg and Moore's study of "Patriotism in Orange."
In a research paper of this sort you should draw from a diversity of sources. Electronic sources are fine so long as they are cited fully and properly but the paper should go beyond the use of Internet sources. A Google search is a good place to begin the research but it is only the barest beginning. To probe beneath the official history of a ritual or monument will require more detective work on your part than typing a few keywords into an Internet search engine. Secondary and primary printed sources should be consulted and used where they are available. Since the overwhelming majority of the material you will be using will not be material we read in class, accurate and complete citation of all materials is a necessity. I do not care whether you use footnotes (Chicago style) or in-text citations (APA or MLA style), so long as you are consistent throughout the paper. You will find guidelines on each of these citation formats at the following website: http://www.dianahacker.com/resdoc/
A successful research paper will
(a) have a clear and interesting thesis or argument,
(b) draw on a wide variety of documents and sources to support and develop the paper's interpretation, and
(c) be clearly written, well-organized, and free of grammatical and spelling errors.
The paper is due December 16 at 4pm and should be 3000 words. The paper may be longer if the research warrants it, but no paper should be more than 4500 words. The paper should be typed, double-spaced, and include a word count at the top of the first page of the paper. Pages should also be numbered.