A contemporary African (or African diasporic) artwork

1. Choose a contemporary African (or African diasporic) artwork that we have not discussed at length in class. With special permission from the instructor, you may be able to compare two works or focus on a series.

3. Formulate a question about the object that research can help you answer. This question should relate to the core concerns of the course, and would ideally bring something new and interesting to the conversation we’ve been developing over the course of the semester.

4. Find at least 3 scholarly sources (exhibition catalogues, peer-reviewed journal articles and books) that analyze the work you’ve chosen.

5. Find at least 3 additional peer-reviewed journal articles or books that offer helpful context for the piece. These sources could be on religion, politics, history, culture, or aesthetic traditions. You must cite a total of 6 scholarly sources in your paper. 6. Formulate an argument about the work that takes into consideration both the analyses of the work offered by other scholars and the contextual frames provided by the readings on culture, history, etc. Ideally, your reading would offer something that other scholars have not seen. 7. Write a 7-9 page paper that elaborates your argument and references all of the above sources. Your paper must include the following (not necessarily in this order): A description of the work(s) in question. See Henry Sayre’s Writing About Art (in the Files folder) for help. A discussion of relevant biographical, historical, cultural, and/or political contexts. DO NOT include any contextual information that is not directly related to your argument. A review of other scholars’ interpretations of the work. Your interpretation, initially communicated in the form of a thesis statement that answers the research question with which you began. Parenthetical citation and a works cited list in MLA format. 8. You may cite additional sources from either peer-reviewed or non-peer-reviewed publications, provided you acknowledge the limitations of non-academic sources. You may also reference readings assigned in class, but these cannot count toward the six-source minimum. 9. Your paper must follow the paper format guidelines detailed in the class handout and in the MLA guide. If you have mastered Chicago format and would prefer to use it, please ask me for special permission. 10. Excluding images and the works cited list, your paper must be no shorter than 7 full pages, and no longer than 9 full pages. 11. In the interest of saving trees, it should not include a separate title page—unless you choose to put a key image analyzed in the paper on that page. 12. You must include relevant images with captions in MLA format.

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