Silk Road Proposal Paper

Major research projects go through a series of steps before the actual research begins. These steps force scholars to demonstrate the feasibility of their research before investing years in a topic. In this case, we are not dedicating years, but rather a month to an INTENSIVE RESEARCH PROJECT on a PARTICULAR TECHNOLOGY or IDEA TRANSFERRED ACROSS THE SILK ROAD. For this project, we are more interested in how the technology of silk production was transferred from China to Europe than how silk was traded across the Silk Road.

WRITE a ONE PAGE PAPER which identifies the technology or idea you intend to research. Provide a brief history of the idea's transferal including the its places of origin and destination, its method and path of transferal and the time period in which the transfer occurred. This is to be a brief sketch since you have not yet done the full research. It should, however, demonstrate a basic understanding of the cultures, places and eras to be researched as well as of the technology itself. If you are researching the transfer of paper-making, it should be clear that you have a basic understanding of the paper-making process. Proposals should be written to convince the reader that the topic is feasible and interesting.

A vital aspect of these proposals is an initial ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY of FOUR SOURCES. This bibliography serves to further demonstrate the feasibility of the topic by showing the existence of source material. This should be attached as a separate sheet. Annotations should make clear how the sources will be used in the research.

The proposal will be evaluated the according to the following criteria:

  • (20 points) – Does the paper contain an annotated bibliography of four sources?
  • (15 points) – Do the annotations demonstrate the feasibility of the topic and the usefulness of the source?
  • (20 points) – Does the paper demonstrate an understanding of the idea transferred?
  • (15 points) – Does the paper indicate understanding of the cultures, places and time periods involved in the topic?
  • (15 points) – Is the paper free of mechanical errors?
  • (15 points) – Is the paper written in a persuasive and informative manner?

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