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UGS 302: Art & The Epidemic / Simons

Choose and develop a topic

Choosing a topic is research

you have an initial idea that you refine through searching in the exisitng conversations and reformulating your thoughts base don what is being talked about

copyright 2023 Elise Nacca

The following resources are robust alternatives to wikipedia - they will give you overviews, help you to identify narrow controversies and stakeholders (who is impacted and who is coming up with solutions) as well as alternate keywords and subject-specific jargon.

List from your assignment prompt

  • Approaches to HIV/AIDS outside the U.S.

  • HIV/AIDS education programs

  • U.S. policies after 1994

  • Organizations formed to address HIV epidemic (Gay Men’s Health Crisis, Terrence Higgins Trust, etc)

  • A particular piece of art created in response to HIV/AIDS (The Normal Heart, Rent, Dallas Buyer’s Club, Pose, Philadelphia, Gia, Longtime Companion, etc) and critical response to that piece

  • Very Special TV episodes about HIV/AIDS

  • Celebrity responses to HIV/AIDS (Elizabeth Taylor, Princess Diana, et al)

  • PrEP

  • Ryan White Act

  • Needle exchange programs

  • Condom distribution in public venues

  • Blood donation policies

  • World AIDS Day


  • Or any other area of interest!

Topic to Thesis Statement - How?

You cannot write a thesis statement until you have finished your research.


Because a thesis statement:

  • is contestable - you are making an argument that needs to be proved - you are seeking to prove this argument with evidence you will find in your research.
  • introduces your reader to a new perspective - how do you say something new if you don't know what has come before?

But I really want to write my thesis statement now, librarian.

I recommend that you do research alongside the drafting of an outline and the crafting of a thesis statement. As you learn more about your topic and as you consider the sources you plan to use, your project will begin to come into focus. How do you plan to present your argument and your evidence? Consider the outline and the thesis as living documents that you will revise. Try NoodleTools (see page at left).

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