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For your course final, you will develop a research project based on questions you develop and explore over the course of the semester related to a genre and cultural artifacts of your choosing. (Note: a cultural artifact is a thing that contains information about the culture that made it. Examples of cultural artifacts include books, movies, songs, objects, etc.) The 8-10 page, thesis-driven paper written as a culmination of this project should critically engage with the issues of inclusion, exclusion, and diversity–which we will discuss in class with reference to Westerns–as they relate to your own research. Your paper should also carefully consider genre and how it influences an artifact’s overall impact. The Research Assignments, Annotated Bibliography, Cultural Artifact Analysis, and Research Project Proposal are designed to build toward your final paper (see The Process below), and you may use and revise any portion of those assignments in your final paper. Generally speaking, you might choose one of two approaches to your paper: You can write a paper discussing how the genre you have chosen engages with issues of diversity/inclusion/exclusion, using analysis of specific artifacts within that genre (one or more) to back up your points. You can write a paper discussing how a particular artifact reflects issues of diversity/inclusion/exclusion, using knowledge of your genre’s conventions to back up your points. You are not limited to these approaches, and are encouraged to develop your thesis and argument in a way that makes sense to you.