English Essay about a certain Neighborhood in Los Angeles. MLA format.

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I already chose my topic which is Little Armenia located in Hollywood. So thats the neighborhood you need to work with. And all of that is from the teacher so thats the assignment.

Your task is to conduct your own study of a particular neighborhood in Los Angeles. You will research independently in order to create a scholarly essay that analyzes the effects of the geographical environment (built or natural) on the emotions and behaviors of the individuals who live or visit there.

“Corporate Sociability” is an example of a psychogeography study of consumer spaces and how IKEA, the Apple Store, and Starbucks designed their stores to have particular effects on the customer. You can use this article as a model of how to write a psychogeography essay focused around a main claim or idea. Your essay will also be focused around a complex claim (your thesis) that offers an original idea or theory about the personality of your neighborhood. Your task, as a writer/scholar, is to move readers into a deeper understanding of the elements that characterize a place and how those elements affect us.

Writing Moves

This essay project will build on writing moves and strategies that we’ve used in Essays 1 and 2. Your job as a writer/scholar is to lead readers through an analytical and well-researched examination of your neighborhood. You may set up this essay as either a deductive or inductive argument. In either case, you will continue working with selecting and using strong evidence, developing logical analysis, conducting research, introducing and concluding the essay, using transitions, and citing sources.

Getting Started

Start by choosing a neighborhood (other than your own) that you find interesting or unique, or one that you want to learn more about. This might be a neighborhood that you are already somewhat familiar with or a neighborhood that is entirely new to you. Remember that your goal is to add original insights to a conversation about this place, so even if you choose a neighborhood you are familiar with, you will need to dig beneath a surface understanding and deepen your examination of the geographical environment through thorough research.

Keep in mind that the geographical environment may involve the landscape, architecture, types of stores or restaurants, language spoken and/or on signs, presence of freeways or public transportation, or other elements that give us a sense of “place” or the personality of a neighborhood. In essence, you are studying the psychogeography or “psychic space” of your chosen neighborhood.

Your analysis of this geographical environment may be focused through a specific lens; for instance, you may want to analyze the neighborhood through the lens of economics, architecture, psychology, social justice, history, science, etc. Do not try to use too many lenses through which to view your neighborhood. Remember that a strong essay maintains a clear and specific focus throughout, so it will be your job to narrow your focus and use a lens that offers the strongest or most original commentary on your neighborhood.

The Research

In Essays 1 and 2, you conducted basic research in order to write about your chosen narratives and songs. In this essay, you will build on those research skills by conducting in-depth independent research. Your research will likely take a variety of forms, which may be primary and/or secondary sources:

  • Primary Sources include direct first-hand accounts, observations, and evidence about an event, object, person, place, or work of art. This document involves information that was created during the time that is being studied and serves as an original source of information about a topic. Primary sources may include:
    • Historical firsthand accounts of important events
    • Fieldwork, which may be: interviews with people who live in or are knowledgeable about the neighborhood, data such as building codes and demographics, and personal observations/evidence from a visit to the neighborhood
  • Secondary Sources include scholarly books and articles discussing information originally presented elsewhere, information about events that were not directly experienced, or analysis of works created by others. Secondary sources may include:
    • Scholarly articles analyzing your neighborhood (look in library databases)
    • Historical research not written during the time period being discussed

Keep in mind that your essay is not simply a summary of facts about a place or an historical overview. Instead, you will use the ideas that you find in your research to develop your original analysis of the neighborhood. Wikipedia may not be used as a source.

The Details

Evolving Thesis: In this essay, you’ll want to set up a thesis early on in your paper. This thesis should be a complex claim that offers an original idea or theory about your neighborhood. For a deductive essay, you will state this complex claim in the introduction, support it throughout the essay using evidence and analysis, and return to your evolved/developed thesis in the conclusion. For an inductive essay, you will begin with a hunch, idea, or question in the introduction that you explore, develop, or answer throughout the essay using evidence and analysis, and you will arrive at an evolved complex thesis in the conclusion.

Evidence: As you lead readers through your discussion, you’ll need to provide a variety of evidence used throughout the essay, in the form of primary and secondary sources. Avoid bringing in a source only to briefly mention it once. Consider how you can use your sources multiple times, in different ways, throughout the essay.

Analysis: Your original ideas and insights will be a fundamental part of this essay. Instead of merely repeating what others have said, your analysis should discuss the deeper meanings of your evidence and what it tells us about the neighborhood. Ask yourself, “So what?” Doing so will help you develop an argument about how your evidence offers a unique understanding of this neighborhood.

Assignment Requirements:

  • Your essay should be a minimum of 8 full double-spaced pages with 1” side margins, 1” header and footer margins, Times New Roman, 12 pt font.
  • Your essay should attempt to engage in analysis that goes beyond a superficial understanding of your neighborhood. While stereotypes may be discussed, your essay should not rely on stereotypes in place of analysis, and your thesis must go beyond stereotypical statements. Analysis should be driven by your research findings and your own insights about your neighborhood.
  • Early on in your draft, you should form a working thesis to give your readers a main complex claim or theory that explains how elements of the neighborhood lead to certain attitudes, emotions, or behaviors.
  • Your essay must integrate and cite at least five credible sources from your research. For your readers, you must accurately summarize the ideas, theories, terms, or concepts you are using from your source (making sure your summary is understandable to a reader who is not familiar with the source you’re introducing, but that summarizing does not take over your essay).
  • Use your sources as a springboard for your own claims, questions and analysis. You cannot just incorporate sources to just add “facts” to your essay. For this essay assignment, you must add to and help develop the ideas from the source you bring in to offer your own thinking about the neighborhood you are writing about.
  • Cite all sources in MLA format (in text), in addition to a Works Cited page. Use Purdue OWL (linked on Canvas) to look up proper MLA in-text citations and Works Cited formatting.
  • Proofread for mistakes and edit for clarity. Consider paragraph organization and appropriate transitions to lead your reader through your discussion.


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