POSSIBLE PAPER TOPICS
1. Vishnu and consorts, on loan from the National Museum of India
2. Kushan capital, 1999-0012
3. Schist Nataraja from Halebid, on loan from the Archaeological Survey of India
4. Vishnu as Trivikrama, 1996-00098
5. Surya from eastern India, 1995-00267
6. Seated Buddha from Mathura, 2000-05627
7. Picchavai of Shrinathji, from Kota, 1995.604
8. Bronze Uma Parameshwari, 2007-01051
9. Ekamukha limgam from U.P., 1993-00218
10. Terracotta Chaturmukhalingam, 1997-02977
11. Schist Syamatara, from eastern India, 1997-04831
12. Sandstone panel with floriated décor, Mughal, 1993-01751
If you want to work on any topic not listed here, you must speak with me first. I’ll be happy to help you think through some alternative topics.
Begin work on the paper as early in the semester as possible. It will be impossible to read in preparation for the paper, to reflect, and to write in just a couple of weeks.
When writing your paper:
1. Make sure that you follow the instructions above. Read the assignment carefully.
2. Take time to discuss the paper with me.
3. When choosing works of art with which to compare your work, make sure the choices are logical. For example, if working on an undated work, compare it to ones that are dated, and take time to think about what constitutes a dated work. Make sure the examples compared are reasonably close in date and geographical area. It serves no purpose to relate works made hundreds of years apart; nor often is it useful to compare works made in northwestern India to those in the extreme south. If you do make such comparisons to establish the date or where a work was made, be sure that you support your reasoning carefully.
4. Always make sure you explain why you have chosen any work to compare to another.
5. In general you should compare an undated work with ones that are dated or ones whose dates are reasonably well established.
6. As you read books and articles in preparation for the paper, read critically. Don’t simply accept whatever an author says as accurate. Often, for example, an author has a political or scholarly agenda that pushes evidence in one direction when other interpretations might be equally possible.
A good way of starting the research is with a recently published book whose topic closely relates to the work you’re researching. Use the bibliography and footnotes in that book to lead you to other sources. Then use the bibliographies and footnotes in those other sources to lead you to still other sources, including the required journal articles. That’s often a more effective way of conducting research than using on-line sources, which may not be adequately specific to your topic. Note, moreover, that the Web is generally not a good source for research. Anyone can post information on a Web page; there’s generally no control over the author’s expertise. So please do not rely on Web sources for information or ideas. To be more specific, do not use Web sources for the research on this paper unless you’ve discussed them with me. The one exception might be Oxford Art Online; the articles in this source all were authored by scholars.
Sources (books, articles) for quotations, direct or indirect, or for ideas that you cite, must be acknowledged in notes. These may be in text notes, end notes or footnotes. Two common formats are the APA format (see http://www.library.cornell.edu/newhelp/res_strategy/citing/apa.html)
and the MLA format (http://www.library.cornell.edu/newhelp/res_strategy/citing/mla.html for in text citations and http://www.carmun.com/works-cited/footnotes/mla for footnote style). Your bibliography, too, can use any standard format, although I recommend either the MLA (http://www.aresearchguide.com/12biblio.html#1 for examples) or APA formats (http://www.library.cornell.edu/resrch/citmanage/apa, where it is described as Reference List rather than Bibliography). Whatever format you use, please use it consistently, and don’t just make up a format. If your format feels to me unconventional, I’ll ask you your source for it. So please note for yourself where you found the format.
In all citations, page numbers must be included.
Cite direct quotes, indirect quotes and all ideas other than your own.
Also include in notes where a plate or picture of each work of art you mention can be found.
At the end of your paper, in addition to notes, you must include a complete bibliography, not a selected bibliography or list of works cited.
Select the sources you consult with care, especially avoiding general histories of art and encyclopedia articles, but do not overlook history books.
7. Please remember that in reading the paper, I will consider the quality of your writing, so be sure to write several drafts before the one that you submit.
8. Double-space your paper.
9. A note on style: underline or italicize the titles of works of art and all foreign words. And, please, remember it's=it is