Your essay should have:
a clear thesis and
organized information to support that thesis.
THE INTRODUCTION should state what the artifact is and make a claim about why it is important to your family history or culture. Try starting your introductory paragraph by describing the artifact in great detail, using your five senses. Include your thesis statement at the end of the paragraph.
THE BODY of your paper should break down the significance of the artifact in more detail. Show the reader why the artifact is important to your family history or culture. If your artifact represents an event or ritual, describe what it involves, even if you believe your audience is already familiar with the object. Show your audience, in detail, how and what the artifact conveys. Include examples, and specifics.
YOUR ESSAY SHOULD BE IN MLA FORMAT which includes double spacing, indented first-line paragraphs, and 12-pt. Times New Roman font see Purdues OWL website for detailed instructions.
The complete essay is at least 750 words in length.
Your paper will be graded on its thesis, supporting evidence, organization, and mechanical correctness.
Your analysis should shed new light on the meanings of your artifact. In other words, you are being asked to select a cultural artifact and consider its significance. Here are some questions you may want to consider as you write. You are NOT required to use these questions, they are simply to assist you in coming up with ideas to write about:
How does the artifact illuminate your family history or culture? What aspects of this culture does it bring to light? How does it do so?
What ideas are embedded in this artifact?
How are these messages conveyed? Through what rhetorical means are they conveyed?
What ideas, beliefs, or stereotypes are being represented through the artifact?
Who is the target audience? What is the context? What is the purpose? Does the artifact succeed in fulfilling this purpose? (Keep in mind that there can be more than one target, audience, or purpose.)
What (or who) is being left out of the artifact history or culture that it represents?
Lastly, your paper should include some evaluation on your part: Why do you think this artifact is important? What is its impact? How, if at all, do you think the artifact affects you, your family, or your culture?
Again, you do not need to answer all of these questions. You may want to pick and choose the ones that work best to support your central purpose (your thesis).