Published by Jeannie R. Ferrell

Dec 8, 2022


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Make sure you have read and understood the MLA (Modern Language Association) guidelines described in the “MLA Documentation Requirements” document in our Supplemental Materials module. In addition, see the “Postrel Sample with MLA” for what the two part MLA documentation would look like in a discussion posting (although on a different topic). Also, good examples will appear (and be noted) in the discussion. Full participation requires a main post and a reply.
Please note that you should not rely on what you know/ remember about MLA documentation from prior instruction. Make sure you’ve studied the guidelines described in the “MLA Documentation Requirements” document in our Supplemental Materials module.
Main PostChoose one of the professional essays assigned from analysis-related chapters in our text, either “The Ways We Lie,” “The Ritual of Fast Food,” “or “Show me the Money,”
For the one you choose, write a main post which initially indicates the main point of the essay and its major supporting evidence and sub-topics, then adds to the essay’s discussion by integrating content from the online New York Times. You must document the information used from the NY Times article with both in-text citations after passages where info or wording is used as well as a Works Cited entry at the end of the posting. Do not document the assigned essay chosen from the textbook since it is commonly assigned material. Document the online NY Times article only! (If you want to use a different info source than the NY Times, contact the instructor in advance of posting).
For example, your main post can provide additional evidence or explanation about the topic, provide an alternative opinion or viewpoint, indicate updated research that has been done on the topic, or expand the discussion in other ways.
The search icon (magnifying glass) at the online New York Times is visible in the upper left part of the web page when reading through a computer. If accessing through a phone, you may need to select “sections” in the menu prior to seeing the search icon. In your post, it is best to use one NY Times article only (even if you read more). If you do use more than one, you must document all content used.
Good initial search terms to consider, depending on the essay you choose, are terms such as lying, lies, falsification, misrepresentation, fast food, food marketing, fast food training, corporate branding, bilingualism, multilingualism, bilingual children, Spanish language, language of home, wealth distribution, mega-wealthy, poverty, dinosaur extinction, cretaceous-tertiary extinction, Chicxulub crater, meteor collision, or additional synonyms and variants of any of these. Terms like effects or research or study can be added to any of the above terms (eg. multilingualism research). Feel free to use your own search terms too; the above are only examples.
Limit your main post to no more than 250 words! Remember that your posting must contain both in-text citations in parenthesis after places where ideas, paraphrases, or quotes from the NY Times source is used (quotes wear quote marks too) and it also must include a Works Cited entry. See the “Postrel Sample with MLA” for an example of what the two-part system would look like in practice in an online discussion posting.
Postrel sample with MLA
Virginia Postrel, author of “In Praise of Chain Stores” is a member of the Libertarian Party, a party that supports citizen choice and freedom from government or other authoritarian interference. Many of her party’s views can be seen in her essay. Libertarians “defend the right of individuals to form corporations, cooperatives” and similar structuresif they choose to (“Libertarian Party Platform”). Postrel describes many advantages of corporate stores (aka chains stores), such as passing market efficiencies to more customers, the speed of developmentof chain stores in a growing area,and the ability for visitors or new residents to shop, eat, and live comfortably in an unfamiliar region because of familiar stores, restaurants, and other services.
The Libertarian platform supports citizens having a diversity of economic (and other)social choices as long as others are not harmed. (“Libertarian Party Platform”). Postrelmeticulously shows that corporate stores do not harm the aesthetics or consumer choices in an area. She defuses some of the “harm” that some people claim, and shows that chains actually offer advantages to residents and visitors. Therefore, chain stores should be praised instead of criticized. Citizen groups or city governments which oppose chain stores in order to preserve local “flavor” (aka unique identity) or create romanticized experiences for some tourists are actually limiting opportunities, according to Postreland her political party.
Works Cited
“Libertarian Party Platform.” Libertarian: the Party of Principle, 2016. Web. Aug 9, 2016.
[Note to students: The one source used in the writing above is documented with the title against the left-hand margin in Works Cited and in the in-text citation because an author is not listed for the document. If an author were listed, which often happens, we would see the author’s last name against the margin and in the in-text citations. Always use the author’s name for MLA if available! Author is always first choice if available. When no author is listed, document with title like in this example.


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