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Archival Research and Annotated Bibliography

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1) Choose a topic related to food in the business industry, for example, food marketing. You don't have to do about this example you can choose your own topic but again, has to be about food in the business industry.

2) You will have to write similar to the PDFs that will be shown in the attached files.

3) You will have to write in separate Microsoft Word, the first Microsoft Word will be about what will be mentioned below:

Paper Length:

6-7 pages (including the works cited/references page) 

Purpose of Archival/Historical Research:

Historians are interested in explaining the past of something or the way it came to be. They do this by going back to the records of the time and examining them directly—or as directly as possible. Putting different sources together, along with background knowledge of the topic, they come up with explanations of an event or phenomenon in its own time period, or how that phenomenon changes over time. The skills they employ—finding primary sources in online or physical archives, interpreting those sources, and presenting a coherent explanation of them in writing—are all skills that you will find useful in future academic work, whether it is specifically historical or not.

In terms of our class, the history of food and food-related topics, as you’ll see, is long and varied; there are a number of opportunities to ask questions about the past. For this assignment: you will need to formulate a research question (RQ) that involves the history of your specific topic. Then, you will need to find 3-5 primary documents that are, at minimum, 15 years old. You will use your primary sources as centerpieces in answering the RQ about the history of a food-related topic

There are a couple of ways you can go about this:

synchronic historical papers treat a particular phenomenon as it exists in a particular time and context. For this kind of paper, you would investigate and draw conclusions about something in its own time, supporting your interpretations with references to specific historical primary documents: “This is what a X is like in the 1970s.” Also, when examining a phenomenon, it will be very interesting to look at the causes and effects of it.

Diachronic papers treat a particular phenomenon across time. Topics in this vein would include investigating the development of X over the years, or the rise of Y in importance over time. You would need to find primary documents in a few different time periods to do this assignment effectively. (If you find two sources that are over 15 years old, you may also use more recent sources to establish the “now” of your argument.)

In either case, a successful response to this assignment will be 6-7 pages long, and will conform to the qualities of good writing that we will set out in class. It will also feature primary sources as the major sources for answering the RQ—for the conclusion you come to as a result of your research. (You should include photographs, scans, or copies of the material you work with, either in the flow of the text or as an appendix, as appropriate.  

You may use secondary sources, but limit them to filling in gaps or providing background. If you wind up quoting a secondary source more often than one of your primary sources, you need to rethink how you’re answering the RQ. If you use external sources, document them properly. 

Here are a few tips:

This is NOT an argumentative essay, so avoid including thesis statements. Instead, we will work on formulating research questions/objectives.

Your RQs/research objectives should be specific and unbiased; in other words, the answers to your RQ should emerge from the articles, not your own arguments.

Example: “How did X evolve throughout the 1930s and 1940?”

“As shown in the article in New York Times in 1932, X first…. The writers of the article then suggested that…”

You need to take an analytical approach in using primary sources. In other words, you would provide a description of an artifact, ALONG WITH an analysis of it (i.e., you tell the reader WHAT was happening, and WHY and HOW it was happening).

You may include the artifacts in the paper, but they are not included in the final page count! 😀

You are HIGHLY encouraged to use subsections/subheadings to better organize the paper.

Here is a suggested layout for the paper:

Introduction: A brief historical account of the topic along with your RQ at the end;

Several body sections in which you summarize, evaluate, and synthesize the artifacts.

Conclusion: A brief restatement of your initial RQ, along with the major findings in the artifacts which helped you answer the RQ.

Phases of the assignment:

Formulate a research question: see R of I, 48-52.

Find primary sources: In R of I, see especially 95-101 and 106-113. Also, see WHH

Write a short summary/analysis of your primary sources early in your drafting process. See the “Tips for Writers” on 99-100 in R of I, as well as Box 5.3, 143-145.

Draft/workshop/revise your paper: For drafting, see R of I Appendix A, 291-308, Appendix B, 309-325, as well as the sample papers in Appendix D, 373-379 and 380-391. Also, WHH, Ch. 4 can be helpful.

  1. Remember as I mentioned before, whatever you write has to be in a similar form to how it's written in the given PDFs.
  2. The second Microsoft Word will be about what will be mentioned below: 

Annotated Bibliography: (Has to be the same topic that you chose for the Archival Research Part Above):

For your Archival Research paper, you'll need to write an annotated bibliography (AB) for your primary sources 

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