Assignment Prompt: Psycho Article Summary
Your purpose in this assignment is multi-fold: a) to learn skills of research using the SJSU library system, including its online search engines; b) to learn to properly cite a scholarly article; c) to improve skills of writing; and d) to gain insight into an important film by engaging with a peer-reviewed, scholarly article on this film — do note that it may not be a review.
First, you will use the MLK Library’s online article search engines (or Google Scholar, etc.) to locate a post-1980, peer-reviewed, scholarly article on this film. Scholarly articles tend to be longer and more critical/analytical than reviews. In order to make sure the article is peer-reviewed, click on this option when searching. Needless to say, the article should focus in some way on the movie in question.
Second, you will read the article and make note of its thesis (a.k.a. argument) and main points.
Third, you will write a concise summary of the article, highlighting its thesis and main arguments (in the first 2/3 of essay’s length) and how these expand your critical understanding of PSYCHO (in the remaining 1/3 of the essay’s length). I suggest concluding your essay with this last part. Be sure not to quote large passages or quote much at all in this assignment; let your voice carry the day.
FORMATTING 2-3 pages (500-750 words), double-spaced, 12-point font, and page numbers. MLA or APA parenthetical format (see below) and proper full citation just below essay required.
RESEARCH / CITATION
Once at sjsu.edu, point the cursor over QUICK LINKS, and you will see KING LIBRARY. Once at the MLK site, you will see at the top a heading called FIND ARTICLES AND BOOKS. Point the cursor over it and select ARTICLES AND DATABASES. The two databases that will be of most use are FILM & TELEVISION LITERATURE INDEX WITH FULL TEXT and JSTOR, both of which you can locate alphabetically or by clicking on the FILM AND THEATRE subject link. Once in either search engine (F&TLIWFT or JSTOR), enter your search key words (psycho and hitchcock would be a good start, but you may have a specific interest), click on PEER-REVIEWED, ARTICLE, JOURNAL, ENGLISH, and FULL TEXT. This will generate plenty of articles that meet the requirements and that you can download onto your computer.
NOTE: Be sure to visit the MLK Library and sign up for an account and PIN, both of which are required when using these search engines outside the university system. You may ask the reference librarian for help on this.
Please use MLA or APA parenthetical citations if/when you quote or paraphrase the article (keep quotes to a bare minimum, as you should summarize in your own voice rather than quote large passages). At the end of your essay, regardless of whether you quoted it, I want to see a proper and full citation of the article, either in MLA or APA style.
Here is an example of parenthetical citation in the body of the text for any quotation (again, to be kept to a minimum):
According to Maximilian M. Todd, “the relationship between object and subject is a testament to the struggles between the sexes” (Smith 94).
And here is an example of a full citation of a peer-reviewed article:
Nordhaus, William D. “After Kyoto: Alternative Mechanisms to Control Global Warming.” American Economic Review 96.2 (2006): 31-34.
Note that “96” refers to the volume, as, in this case, the 96th year of this journal’s circulation; “2” refers to the issue in that year (in some cases, the issue is labeled by season, and you would cite it like this: “…Review 96 (Winter 2006): 31-34.”