Troy University Song and Social Change Paper

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Song and Social Change Paper and Presentation (Paper is 20%; Presentation is 10%)

Draft Paper is due on Turnitin by Friday, February 2/14 before Midnight

Final Paper is due by Turnitin by Friday, Sunday 3/1, before midnight 

In this this 8-10 page double-spaced paper, you should discuss a popular protest song in American history.  The paper should answer the following six questions: 1) Who wrote and recorded the song (i.e., provide a brief biography)?; 2) Is there any information about why the songwriter wrote the song (or if the performer is not the songwriter – why s/he wanted to sing the song?); 3) Was the song a popular hit (i.e., what rank and year if it hit Billboard 100) and/or was it on a popular album (i.e., what rank and year if it hit Billboard 200 Chart)?; 4)What was the social/political/cultural context for when the song emerged?; 5) Which movements for social change does the song most closely represent?; and 6) What large changes were happening in technology that may have affected the way the song was disseminated?

In journalistic, narrative style similar to Lynskey’s reading on Billie Holiday, you will need to answer these questions.  If you need to write more than 10 pages, please feel free to do that.  However, make sure that your writing is well-organized and well-written (i.e., free of typos).  You should have a separate cover page and reference page with at least four references.   You do not have use scholarly sources if you cannot find any for your particular song.  You can use popular press articles, online articles, websites dedicated to protest songs, etc.. Please do not use Wikipedia.  However, you are allowed to find other sources that are referenced in a Wikipedia article about your song or social movement. I would prefer it if your paper used some scholarly sources (i.e., books or journal articles). Also, one of your sources can be video or audio based (e.g., documentary film or some type of news program like 60 Minutes, an NPR story) on your social movement.

In terms of how the paper is graded, answering each question fully will be worth 10 points = 60 points, 25 points for quality of writing (i.e., readability, grammar, spelling, organization, and length), 15 points for references (in text references and reference page following ASA format).

I am posting a comprehensive guide to ASA formatting for you to follow.  One issue I do want you to keep mind is to keep quotes to a minimum.  This paper should be mostly in your own words. Also, you must have a basic cover page and reference page.  Please note that these pages do not count for your total page count. And I would ask that you insert page numbers in your document (on the lower right hand side).

You should submit by Turnitin a 4-5 page draft of the paper before midnight on Friday, Feb. 14th.   The draft should touch on answers from the six questions.   Therefore, you should have done all your research that will cover the six questions by mid-February. If you have the whole paper done by then, I will certainly review whatever you submit.  The student presentations will begin on Monday, March 2nd and will continue on Wednesday, March 4th as well as March 6th on Canvas.  The final paper will be due before midnight through Turnitin on Sunday, March 1st.  Regarding late work for either the draft or the final paper, I will accept it, but please note that it will be marked a letter grade down for each class day it is late. The draft paper will be counted like a quiz grade.

In terms of the final presentation, you should quickly run through the answers to the six main questions outlined in your paper.  However, you should just touch on the highlights to these answers as the presentation should not run more than 15 minutes. I would like you to have a handout with the printed lyrics of the song and play the song (either through a CD or a YouTube clip of the song).  The presentation should include at least seven slides of a PowerPoint Presentation, 1 slide to introduce yourself and the song and approximately 1 slide for each of the 6 questions.  Try and make the PowerPoint engaging (i.e., with interesting pictures and not too many words per side). You should post your presentation to the Discussion Board before you present.

I will go over in class how to search for a protest song, how to determine whether it charted on Billboard (…); AllMusic Guide, and Wikipedia), and searches for scholarly sources on protest songs.

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