The Essay Assignment—Short Research Paper on “Violence in Superman Movies” • Superman: The Movie (1978) the first 48 minutes. o The sentencing of General Zod and his rebel conspirators to the Phantom Zone o Jor-El’s conflict with the Kryptonian council regarding the planet’s imminent destruction o Jor-El and his wife, Lara, sending their infant son, Kal-El, to Earth in a spaceship so that he would escape the destruction of his home planet o Krypton’s destruction due to geological instabilities o The arrival of Kal-El’s spaceship in a farm field in rural Kansas where the toddler (he seems to have aged about four years during his space flight) is found by a farming couple, Jonathan and Martha Kent, who adopt the boy and give him the name Clark Kent o Some of Clark Kent’s high school days in Smallville, Kansas along with the death of his father and his subsequent journey to the arctic region of Canada where he is tutored by a holographic computer projection of his Kryptonian father, Jor-El, after which he appears as a full-grown Superman and moves to Metropolis. • Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut (1980), this movie about the arrival of General Zod and his rebel conspirators on Earth and their attempt to “rule the world” Those two films—the first 48 minutes of the 1978 film and all of the 1980 film, essentially tell the same story as the 2013 film Man of Steel. However, despite the 1978/1980 film and the 2013 film telling the same basic story, there are several significant differences—one of which is the level of violence that is depicted in these otherwise nearly identical stories that were made about 35 years apart. • Your narrowed topic is “a comparison and contrast of the violence in the two Superman stories.” To that narrowed topic you must develop your own controlling idea to create a thesis. Your “controlling idea” is the argument you want to make about the use and depiction of violence in the two versions of this Superman story. What you want to argue about the violence in the Superman movies is up to you, and there are several arguments that can be made about the films. The essay, you should do the following before you begin to write: • Identify the various violent elements in the two similar-but-different stories • Consider the purpose and effectiveness of the violent elements in telling each film’s story • Consider the possible effects on the audience that watches the films • Consider the American society at the time the films came out—similarities and differences in American culture in 1978/1979 and 2013. In you wring, you must integrate material from the six academic papers that have been placed on Blackboard as PDF files: • “Imitation, Media Violence, and Freedom of Speech” by Susan Hurley • “Media Violence and Freedom of Speech: How to Use Empirical Data” by Boudewijn de Bruin—which is a response to Susan Hurley’s earlier paper. • “The Influence of Media Violence on Youth” by Craig A. Anderson, et al (and others)—In her paper, Susan Hurley makes numerous references to several of the authors of this paper. • “Mass Media Effects on Violent Behavior” by Richard B. Felson • “Television Viewing and Aggression: Some Alternative Perspectives” by Seymour Feshbach and June Tangney • “The Impact of Mass Media Violence on US Homicides” by David P. Phillips You must integrate something from each of these academic papers into your own essay, and you must adhere to the MLA guidelines for parenthetical citation. You must also include an annotated bibliography at the end of the essay. Information about MLA guidelines and annotated bibliographies can be found at the following two Webpages associated with Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab (along with other pages of information that can be accessed through links on these two pages): • https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/ • https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/614/01/ the essay must support by thesis and arrive at a conclusion—some sort of decision, solution, explanation, or “whatever” that is based on your analysis and argument. Also consider the Toulmin model regarding the six components of an argument: • Claim (thesis) • Data (support for the thesis) • Warrant (the assumption on which your argument is based) • Backing (support for the warrant) • Qualifiers (language that modifies the claim and/or sub-claims) • Rebuttal (addressing views that disagree with your argument)
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