Portfolio Assignment

Cover of The RunawaysYour portfolio assignment is a way for you to reflect on what you have learned this semester.  Your draft is due on Thursday, April 28.  Your final draft is due on Thursday, May 5 at midnight.  I will return work electronically.  Everyone will receive their graded assignments within a week but not at the same time.  I will return them as I grade them and I will grade them in the order that they reach my inbox at: hidalgoatpurdue@gmail.com.

Your portfolio must contain the following:

At least two of your three projects.

Your portfolio reflective letter.  In your reflective letter you will do the following:

1.  Thoroughly define two of the concepts we have discussed in class this semester:

Ethos

Pathos

A well-supported, clear thesis

Audience awareness

Visual rhetoric

Language and tone

Use of valid sources

Integration of quotations

MLA citation

For your definitions you can draw from your notes, from class discussions (refer to the ways in which we discussed the concepts and how they relate to the texts we read/watched), from our class textbook and from the Purdue OWL.  For Compose Design Advocate and for the OWL, you should use MLA when citing them.

2. For each of the two concepts selected, you will explain how you have applied them in your projects, which if needed, will be revised to make those concepts work better.  When you are referring to the concepts you will cite them as you would any other source, by providing the title of the source as well as the page number.  For websites, use the name of the tab of that particular page, as well as the paragraph number if applicable.  You must address two projects per concept, so for example, you can’t take all three of your visual rhetoric examples from your website.

3. You will select a color for each of the two concepts and change the font color of the title of that portion of your reflective essay to match it (please do not use yellow).  You will then highlight or change the font color of the portions of the projects you are referring to to that same color (do not do this when dealing with your website).  You need a minimum of three examples per concept.

Your final product should be between 900 – 1500 words (3 – 5 pages).

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Project 3 Assignment

For this project you will produce a website. We will have a class workshop teaching you an accessible software you may use to make websites, though you can make your website with whatever program you feel most comfortable with. You will need to use images and/or graphics and hyperlinks in order to make your website work effectively.

You may choose to do this project in pairs or individually.

Below are some suggestions for your website. If none of these fit what you would like to do, we can discuss other possibilities.

1. A website for a work of art: a book, a film, a play, an album, an architectural work, etc.

2. A website for a person: someone you admire in your personal life, a politician, an artist, a celebrity, a historical figure, etc.

3. A website for an institution: a non-profit organization, a sports team, an educational facility, etc.

4. You can make a website to teach others about a heroic event or moment in American or world history that is meaningful to you.

5. You can make a website that examines the concept of heroes, superheroes and/or antiheroes in our society. You can critique it, question it or tell your audience why you think it is relevant (or do all three).

Your site should be educational about whatever work, person, institution, event or concept you select. You will need to target it to a particular audience, such as college students, young children, the elderly or people from a certain profession or ethnicity. Once you select your audience group, you will target your information to their particular needs.

You will use a minimum of three sources. At least one of these should come from print (meaning a book or something you found in our library’s catalogue) and one from the web. You are also welcome to interview experts in the field or people whose opinions are relevant to your topic. No matter how many interviews you do, they will count as one source. Since this is a website you should take advantage of hyperlinking whenever possible when citing your sources.

The text on your website should be equivalent to 4-6 pages (1,200-1,800 words). You will also write a 1-2 page (300-600 words) reflection in which you explain the rhetorical choices you made in terms of educating your target audience about your selected topic. If you’re working in pairs, each member should write their own reflection.

The students who did not present with their Project 2 groups will present their websites to the class. The presentations will be less about content and more about your choices in crafting the site. You will have about five minutes to present your websites and three minutes to answer questions.

Keep in mind the concepts of ethos, pathos, logos and having a clear thesis that we have discussed in class, as well as audience awareness, tone and language. Remember to take into account what your audience knows about this topic and what their already established opinions are. As with project 2, visual rhetoric is a vital component of this assignment and you should display your knowledge of our class readings and discussions on the subject in your work.

Your first draft is due on Wednesday, April 20. We will be at a computer lab so you can view the websites electronically. Your final draft is due on Monday, April 25. I will return work electronically. Everyone will receive their graded assignments within a week of turning them in, but not all at the same time. I will return them as I grade them, and I will grade them in the order that they reach my inbox at: hidalgoatpurdue@gmail.com.

A “C” project should:
• Meet all requirements of the assignment.
• Provide appropriate description so that an audience can understand the situations and issues
involved.
• Have a thesis that follows logically from the body of the project.
• Control surface errors.
• Use MLA citation to document all sources.

A “B” project should do everything a “C” project does but should also:
• Show evidence that possible audience objections have been anticipated and responded to.
• Incorporate sources smoothly.
• Include an analysis that interrogates the experiences, observations and sources critically.
• Produce a logical, easy to navigate website structure.

An “A” project should do everything a “B” project does but should also:
• Arrive at a thesis that is original, insightful and sensible.
• Show a flair with language and visual rhetoric.
• Have a clear organizational strategy based on audience needs.
• Demonstrate an extensive understanding of the website genre’s particular characteristics.

Project 2 Assignment

This is a group project and has four components: a short video (either a documentary or a movie preview), a written analysis, your presentation of that analysis by two members of your group, and a question and answer session.

Group Work: You will select your own groups of three or four students to work on this project together.  You’ll be allowed to work together during conferences, but you’ll also have to meet outside of class.  Each group member will present progress reports whenever we meet during conferences to ensure that everyone is doing their part.  If a member does not do the work s/he has agreed to do, s/he will be removed from the group and will have to complete the project on her/his own.

Short Video: The video should be between 3-5 minutes long and you have two options:

Option 1. You can make a short documentary about a person, organization or company that you believe is doing heroic work.  You would have to interview at least two people and also have footage of their professional/volunteer work and/or daily life to use as B-roll and intersperse throughout.  You will have to talk to your subjects in advance and get permission from them, as well as work around their schedule.  Shooting will take place on the weekend of March 25-27. If your subjects need to shoot during the week, you can do it on Friday, March 25.  You will not be ready to shoot prior to that time, so make sure that those dates works for your subjects.  You must have a film plan when you show up to shoot.  The plan will encompass the questions you want to ask, the topics you want your subjects to discuss, as well as the B-roll you want to shoot.  For this assignment you need to interview at least two people about your topic and use B-roll effectively.

Option 2. You can make a preview for a film about a new superhero of your creation.  You should choose a problem that you find particularly disturbing in our society and create a superhero who would be able to either address it or inspire others to address it.  Be creative.  Your hero could be a woman, man or child, or it could be an animal, an object, or a digital being—whatever you envision, as long as you’re able to bring it to life on film.  You are welcome to mix you own footage with footage from other works that fit your vision.  You will need to have a detailed storyboard and a screenplay for this option.  Feel free to use humor if that’s the tone you think best fits your work. Shooting will take place on the weekend of March 25-27. If your actors need to shoot during the week, you can do it on Friday, March 25. You will not be ready to shoot prior to that time, so make sure that that date works for your actors.

Editing the Footage:

During this section, we will learn basic storyboarding and screenwriting to help you work on your videos.  You will also be taught how edit digital video using IMovie.   You can use your own video cameras or borrow them from the DLC.  If you borrow one from the DLC, they are on loan for three days only, so you’ll have to shoot and capture the footage to a hard drive during that time.

To check out a video camera and/or a tripod from the DLC, you can go to this link: https://www.dlc.purdue.edu/equipment.cfm or call 765-494-3751.

I understand that not all students own Mac computers—which is needed to run IMovie.  The DLC has a number of Macs that students can reserve in order to edit their footage.  Students with regular Macs will be able to download the footage directly into their computer using the firewire cable that comes with the cameras.  Students with MacBook Pros, however, will need to reserve a Mac at the DLC in order to download the footage since MacBook Pros do not have a firewire port.

In order to reserve Mac computers at the DLC, please go here: https://www.dlc.purdue.edu/computer/index.cfm. You will be asked to log in using your Purdue ID, then you will go to “Select Operating System” and choose Mac.  You will also go to “Search by Computer Name” and choose Macs 1 through 5.  Only these five computers have the firewire port required to download footage.  Footage is downloaded in real time, so that if you film for an hour, it will take you an hour to download it.  Make sure you allow yourself plenty of time to download the footage, since sometimes it takes a while to get a handle of the process.

NOTE: You must reserve a computer and do so in advance or there may be no computers available when you go to download your footage.

Once you have downloaded the footage, you want to save it into an external hard drive (whether or not you are using your own computer, since video footage takes up a lot of space).  If someone in your group owns an external hard drive, please use that one.  If not, we have a limited number of hard drives you can borrow from Cathy Archer in Heavilon 302. Mention that you are Alexandra Hidalgo’s student when you ask her for one of the drives that have been reserved to be used by my students.  You will save your project on the external hard drive.

If you have your own Mac computer, you can use it to edit the footage once you have it in the hard drive.  If you don’t have your own Mac computer, you can reserve a Mac at the DLC and work on editing your film there.  The staff at the DLC is knowledgeable about IMovie and will be able to answer your questions as you work.  Whether or not you decide to work on your own computer, you could do your editing at the DLC so you can take advantage of the staff’s guidance.

I will provide you with templates of releases, which you will ask every one of your subjects to sign before you film them.  You will turn in scans of the releases along with the rest of the assignment and keep the originals for yourselves.

Once you have finished your video, you will create a free account on vimeo.com by going to: http://vimeo.com/join and you will post your video on vimeo.

Written Analysis: Your analysis essay should be double-spaced and 5-8 pages long (around 1,500 – 2,400 words).   You will need at least three sources.  One from the web, one from print or the library catalogue, and a third that can be whatever you wish as long as it’s credible.  You can have more than three sources but don’t get carried away.  No more than eight would be advisable.  The essay serves two purposes:  it reports your research findings and then it analyzes your video.

Option 1: Your research for this project will comprise the subject you are featuring as well as different people, organizations or companies that are doing similar things to your subject.  If your subject is involved with a particular issue, such as education or gay rights, you should also do some research on that issue.  For the second part of your paper, you will analyze your choices as documentary filmmakers.  How did your questions, camera angles, editing and mise-en-scène help you make the points you wanted to make about your subject?

Option 2: Your research will focus on the problem you are hoping your superhero will address or inspire others to address.  For the second part of your paper, you will analyze your choices in terms of screenplay, camera angles, mise-en-scène and editing.  How are your filmic choices helping your preview make people want to see the whole film?  How do they present the problem you see in society and show your superhero as being able to help solve it by his/herself or through interaction with others?

Presentations: Two group members will present the video during our screening days.  The first member will speak before we watch the video and will share the research information that was found on the issue, as well as why as a group you found it to be an issue worth addressing.  The second member will speak after we have watched the video and will analyze it for the class.  The information you are presenting will come from your written analysis.  You are welcome to use Powerpoint but you can also do an oral presentation.  It’s up to you.

Question and Answer Session: The whole group will answer questions from classmates about both the video and the analysis.  You will be evaluated on your ability to reply in a coherent and knowledgeable manner.

Keep in mind the concepts of ethos, pathos, logos and having a clear thesis that we have discussed in class, as well as audience awareness, tone and language.  Remember to take into account what your audience knows about this topic and what their already established opinions are. Visual rhetoric is vital to this assignment.  Make sure to integrate what we have discussed and read about visual rhetoric as you work on your videos and the analysis.

Your names must be on the assignment and you need to give the video and the written analysis a title. The film plan, screenplay and storyboard workshop will take place on Wednesday, March 23. Bring one hard copy of each to share with other groups.  Video screenings and presentations will take place on Monday, April 11 and Wednesday, April 13.  You will email me the vimeo link, the written analysis and the scanned releases on the day of your presentation. I will return work electronically.  Everyone will receive their graded assignments within a week of turning them in, but not all at the same time.  I will return them as I grade them, and I will grade them in the order that they reach my inbox at: hidalgoatpurdue@gmail.com.

A “C” project should:

• Meet all requirements of the assignment.

• Provide appropriate description so that an audience can understand the situations and issues

involved.

• Have a thesis that follows logically from the body of the written analysis.

• Control surface errors.

• Use MLA citation to document all sources.

• Demonstrate an understanding of film elements such as editing, framing, mise-en-scène and lighting.

A “B” project should do everything a “C” paper does but should also:

• Show evidence that possible audience objections have been anticipated and responded to.

• Incorporate sources smoothly.

• Include an analysis that interrogates the experiences, observations and sources critically.

• Create filmic images that correspond with the topic being explored.

• Craft an entertaining and informative video.

An “A” project should do everything a “B” paper does but should also:

• Arrive at a thesis that is original, insightful and sensible.

• Show a flair with language and/or visual rhetoric.

• Have a clear organizational strategy based on audience needs.

• Use B-roll in an original and pertinent manner.

• Create a video that produces a strong (intended) reaction in the audience such as laughter, compassion, admiration, etc.

Information Treasure Hunt

Students will work in groups of three or four, but each student will be researching the topic they selected for project 1.
Each group member needs to find:

1. Two credible websites/pages/internet sources
2. Two articles from a peer-reviewed journal (those you can find under the library catalogue)
3. One multimedia source (a video, an image, a podcast)
4. Two books currently in the Purdue Library Holdings

Compile a word document of the URLs, titles, and citation information (in MLA format) of all three group members.
For information on MLA format, you can go the Purdue OWL.
If you’re done with your project, you should stay at the library and continue to explore the Purdue OWL or the library website till class time is over.

To get your participation point for today, all members of your group must submit your completed assignment by midnight and email it to me at ahidalgo@purdue.edu.

Project 1 Assignment Description

For this project you will write an analytical paper related to one or both of the texts we have read for this section:  The Odyssey and Pride and Prejudice.  As long as you engage critically with the material, there aren’t too many restrictions but you should make sure to discuss your ideas with me over conferences, during office hours or over email.  Here are some possible topics:

1. You can analyze the way one or both texts portray a concept, such as heroism, romantic or parental/filial love, family, villains/monsters, goodness, loyalty, cruelty, happiness, tragedy, etc.  If you choose to use both texts, you will compare how each one of them addresses the concept you’ve selected.  Your research might include other scholarship on that issue and/or historical scholarship about the time during which the works were written.

2. You can do a critique of one or both texts from a certain perspective, such as gender, class, race, sexuality, age, etc.  If you choose to use both texts, you may want to argue that one text is in your opinion more successful in its representation of women, underprivileged classes, etc. than the other, and explain why you believe that to be the case.  Your research might include theoretical works from the perspective you’ve selected (feminist theory, working-class studies, etc.) and/or historical scholarship about the time during which the works were written.

3. Both works have had a variety of film adaptations.  If you choose this option, your paper would examine the directors’ choices in taking a piece from literature to the screen.  You should focus on only one work and one adaptation.

Odyssey adaptations:  Ulysses (Mario Camerini, 1954), The Odyssey (Andrei Konchalovsky, 1997), O Brother, Where Art Thou? (Joel and Ethan Cohen, 2000).

Pride and Prejudice adaptations:  Pride and Prejudice (miniseries, 1995), Bridget Jones Diary (Sharon Maguire, 2001), Bride & Prejudice (Gurinder Chadha, 2005), Pride & Prejudice (Joe Wright, 2005).

Your research might include articles on film theory and film adaptation as well as criticism about the films themselves.  As with the two previous options, you could also use historical scholarship about the time during which the works were written.

If none of these options seem appealing to you, we can discuss other possibilities.

Keep in mind the concepts of ethos, pathos, logos and having a clear thesis that we have discussed in class, as well as audience awareness, tone and language.  Remember to take into account what your audience knows about this topic and what their already established opinions are.  If you think illustrations, graphics or pictures would add to the power of your project, you are welcome to use them, but you must address them as you make your points.

Your paper should be double-spaced and 5-8 pages long (around 1,500 – 2,400 words). You will need at least three sources.  One from the web, one from print or the library catalogue and a third that can be whatever you wish as long as it’s credible.  You can have more than three sources but don’t get carried away.  No more than eight would be advisable.

Your name must be on the assignment and you need to give it a title.  Your first draft is due on Wednesday, February 23.  You should have an electronic copy of the paper that you can email to your fellow workshop members.  Your final draft is due on Friday, February 25. I will return work electronically.  Everyone will receive their graded assignments within a week of turning them in, but not all at the same time.  I will return them as I grade them, and I will grade them in the order that they reach my inbox at: hidalgoatpurdue@gmail.com.

A “C” project should:

• Meet all requirements of the assignment.

• Provide appropriate description so that an audience can understand the situations and issues

involved.

• Have a thesis that follows logically from the body of the paper.

• Control surface errors.

• Use MLA citation to document all sources.

A “B” project should do everything a “C” paper does but should also:

• Show evidence that possible audience objections have been anticipated and responded to.

• Incorporate sources smoothly.

• Include an analysis that interrogates the experiences, observations and sources critically.

An “A” project should do everything a “B” paper does but should also:

• Arrive at a thesis that is original, insightful and sensible.

• Show a flair with language and/or visual rhetoric.

• Have a clear organizational strategy based on audience needs.

A Few Thoughts on Pride and Prejudice

Here are a few things I want you to keep in mind as you read Pride and Prejudice. Although the novel wasn’t published till 1812, Jane Austen wrote the first draft in 1796 and this is roughly when the story takes place. Austen, like Elizabeth Bennet, the main character in Pride and Prejudice, was a member of the English gentry. The Bennets (like the Austens) were not wealthy members of the gentry. They had enough money to cover their expenses but not enough to save.

One thing to keep in mind about English law in the 1700 and 1800s, because the plot of Pride and Prejudice centers around it, is that only the first born son is allowed to inherit the parents’ estate. Women are not allowed to inherit if they have brothers or even cousins who might inherit instead. The reason for having only one heir is that it kept fortunes from being divided up by siblings. The eldest son would not work, and would instead be in charge of running the estate. Younger sons who were not to inherit the family’s estate would be trained in one of three possible professions: law, the military or the clergy. While it wasn’t exactly shameful to work, having a son work was perceived as a sign of lesser wealth.

Women of the gentry did not work unless they were terribly impoverished. If so, the most acceptable occupation was that of a governess because it meant that the woman would stay surrounded (and in theory protected) by other members of the gentry, meaning the parents of the children she looked after. Being a governess was a sign of great shame. A gentry woman’s goal in life was to marry. For that purpose they were given a sum of money by their parents, which they would contribute to their husbands’ income. Remember that since the woman did not work and was likely to have children with her husband, marriage was an expensive proposition to a man. If a woman did not marry (and women who remained unmarried by their late 20s had a very hard time finding a husband), she would have to live on her parent’s inheritance, on the charity of relatives, or become a governess. Women who became pregnant out of wedlock or who ran off with a man without marrying him were shunned by society. Gentry women who became pregnant might be sent to live in the countryside and be separated from their families for life, or they might be abandoned, in which case they often turned to prostitution, having no other means for making a living.

Pride and Prejudice will mention people’s “livings” a lot, as well as how much they have a year. This is part of people’s inheritances and most of them would take the money and put it in a bank and live off its interest, which is why they had a fixed income each year. As you will see, a man’s fixed income, as well as how much money a woman has been granted by her parents, was a very important thing to consider when people were deciding whether or not to marry each other.

As you navigate the language and the storyline, try to think of the ways in which Elizabeth Bennet is a hero and compare her to Odysseus’s own turn as one. How are they different? How are they similar? How do they fit within their historical time periods?

Introduction for reading The Odyssey

Here are a few things you need to know about Homer’s Odyssey to understand what we’re reading:

The Odyssey is a continuation of Homer’s Illiad. In the Iliad, the Greeks fought a war against the Trojans for ten years because a Trojan prince, Paris, had kidnapped the world’s most beautiful woman, Helen, who was married to King Menelaus at the time–bear in mind that the Greeks had many kings, whose dominion was small, sort of like Medieval Europe. After ten years of war, King Odysseus with the help of Athena, the goddess of wisdom, had the idea that helped the Greeks win the war and take over Troy–the Trojan horse. However, he upset some of the gods and was unable to return home with the others. The Odyssey follows the story of his ten-year journey home during which he faces his share of monsters, has affairs with a few goddesses and goes through much suffering.

Odysseus is famous for being cunning and tricky. He is also arrogant, but arrogance was not considered problematic in Greece the way it is for us today. In those days, it made sense for him, an intelligent, strong, handsome and rich king, to be boastful. Humility wasn’t something the Greeks celebrated the way we do. The Greeks also had slavery, so that the men fighting with Odysseus don’t really have a choice. They must obey him.

As you may know, the Greeks had many gods, and these gods were always involved in their own fights and quarrels–they all took sides during the Trojan War. The gods had favorites among humans and helped them. To be a favorite of the gods, as Odysseus is of Athena, was very lucky since the gods used their magic and superior minds to help the humans they championed. Ultimately Odysseus’s journey home becomes a war between Athena and Poseidon, who, as you will see in the “One-Eyed Giant,” has ample reason not to want Odysseus to get home.

Waiting for Odysseus at home is his wife, Penelope, who, like her husband, is very cunning. There is also his son, Telemachus, who when Odysseus left was only a baby but is now in his early 20s. Since Odysseus hasn’t come back in so long and is presumed dead, the Greek custom is that Penelope needs to remarry, since women couldn’t be independent in Ancient Greece. Since Odysseus’s kingdom is wealthy, there are 108 suitors who are pursuing her, hoping to become the new king. As was the custom, when pursuing her they can eat and drink in her home. Thus, for about a decade over a hundred men have been destroying Odysseus’s kingdom and using up all his wealth. Penelope will not marry any of them, however, because she thinks Odysseus is still alive and he’s the man she loves. To deceive the suitors she claims to be weaving a shroud for Odysseus’ father’s burial. She claims that when she finishes the shroud, she’ll choose a suitor. However, what she weaves during the day, she undoes at night, so that the shroud takes years to make. Her son, Telemachus, unaware of her scheme is frustrated that his mother is allowing the suitors to consume his inheritance and in desperation sets off to find his father, without much success.

This should give you a good basis for reading the sections we have. We’ll talk more about it as we discuss the pieces.

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