Week 3 - The Beats and their Predecessors

Research and Writing Assignments: Compile a Working Bibliography

Bedford Guide: Read Chapter 3, Compiling a Working Bibliography

Movie: Scene selection reviewing, based on topic selection

Literary Reading: Select Quotes from The Maltese Falcon


Lecture 3

Link to a good example of a mind map.Once you have selected a possible research topic, go out into the data base, Proquest, and onto the internet to find related articles, books and research that will support your idea. Begin widelyand narrow your topic down. One way to do this is to name a topic idea, then, having reviewed the methods of mind-mapping (found on the internet link above). You want to free yourself of linear thinking. Use a large piece of paper or cut open a paper bag so that you have sufficient space to spread out. Use crayons or magic markers instead of a pencil or pen to name your concepts and connections. Then, look at your own map and see what has come to mind. You might try to do this on the net and e-mail it to me, or at least e-mail me the result and send the result, written out as a tentative working thesis, to your writing group. I will look it at them there.

You may do the mind mapping and the tentative bibliography somewhat simultaneously. You are pre-searching to discover your concept, mapping to more fully realize some possibilities about your concept, and then searching further for articles to create a working bibliography of articles,websites, books and quotes from the film and the book which support your notion. Create the working bibliography of 12-20 sources, using the model in your Bedford Guide, and send it along to your writing groupl, after your have sent along your working thesis. These steps, done together, will lead you to create a working outline for your paper. This step will delimit your topic to a size suitable for covering in 2-3 weeks. Right-sizing your topic is a part of the assignment. Also, writing about something that intrigues you and is related to interests you may have before this assignment helps you move through the research process with enthusiasm.

Once you begin to find on-line resources you wish to use, you may download them to a research file you create for yourself,or print them out and mark them up with highlighter. You may also highlight and mark up your text, flagging the pages with post-it notes or red highlighter tags. For quick questions about all this, e-mail me at sternandwalker@comcast.net for possible same-day answers to your questions. It is important to find a topic, solidify that notion and begin the in-depth work as soon as possible, so that you give yourself adequate time to do sufficient research. My notion is that we always work out of abundance. If the final paper requires 7-10 sources, including the text and the movie, then 12-20 sources should be found. Some sources will be discarded in the process of writing the paper and will not appear in the final works cited. Only sources that you actually use in the paper will be mentioned there.