How do I form a good thesis statement for a research paper?
The key to a solid thesis statement for a research paper is that you need to be able to prove your thesis. Ask yourself a few questions: 1) Is my thesis a fact that no one would dispute? If no one would dispute it, that is not a real thesis statement. Remember not to use a proven fact as your thesis statement. It is your job to prove something with your paper! 2) Have I done enough research to form a thesis statement? It is difficult to form a thesis for a research paper if you have not done any research yet. The thesis for your research paper is meant to be a conclusion you reach after reading a variety of sources. If you are struggling to form a thesis statement, try looking over your research again! 3) Do you have the evidence to support your thesis? Maybe you thought of a thesis that sounds really interesting. That's a great start! But do you have the evidence from your research to back it up? Your writing process will be smoother and more successful if you choose a thesis statement that your research supports.
What were performances of Shakespeare like in his own time?
I studied abroad at the Globe Theatre in London, a recreation of the theater many of Shakespeare's plays were performed at. You can go see performances at the Globe Theatre that try to recreate the experience an audience member in Shakespeare's time would have had at the theater. Here are a few key things you would have experienced as a theater-goer in Shakespeare's time. Let's pretend you were going to see an original production of "Much Ado About Nothing" at the Globe Theatre! Unless you were wealthy, you would have had to stand! Working-class members of the audience stood facing the stage. While your legs may have become tired listening to Beatrice and Benedict squabble in "Much Ado About Nothing," you would have been able to interact with the audience. Whereas now we typically sit in a darkened theater, in Shakespeare's time, especially during comedic plays, actors might chat with the audience, in character, during a performance. Yes, boys really did play the women's roles. Beatrice and all the other leading ladies would have been played by young male actors. This is because there were a lot of fear over the morality of theater in London and elsewhere. Many likened it to prostitution. This is not true of all countries: for example, this law did not apply to Italy, where actresses flourished at the same time actresses weren't allowed on stage in England. Shakespeare was not considered high art at the time! Shakespeare included many scenes that would have been considered "low" art at the time, such as broad comedy. "Much Ado About Nothing," along with all of Shakespeare's comedies and many of his other plays, include a lot of broad humor that his contemporaries saw as low-brow. His status as the greatest dramatic playwright of all time came much later. In his own time, his plays were seen as entertainment rather than high art.
What is the "cinema of attractions?"
The cinema of attractions is an academic term created after the fact to describe the early years of film. During the first decade of filmmaking, until roughly 1907, films were very different than they are today. Whereas now, when we sit down in a movie theater, we go to see a story unfold, in the first decade of filmmaking, the interest was in the exciting newness of film technology. Viewers went to the theatre to see the exciting thrills cinema could offer. For example, short films depicting the movement of trains were very popular because they showcased film's ability to display movement. Movement on screen was thrilling to viewers of early cinema! A short film depicting the movement of tree branches was also incredibly popular. While that may sound funny now, at the time it was revolutionary. Films that showcased the magic of editing were also popular during the cinema of attraction period. Through editing, a filmmaker could have a person in the frame at one moment and have them "disappear" in the next frame. This proved to be very entertaining for viewers. Georges Melies films in particular showcase the magical qualities of editing. This term "cinema of attractions" was created by the scholar Tom Gunning long after the fact. It is frequently used in film studies. For more information, his essay on "cinema of attractions" is very helpful!