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What is a media diary essay?

Media diary essays are short essays that are based, in part, on a media diary that you keep for four weeks (and will turn in alongside your essay).

You need first to choose a topic that is covered in contemporary media. This should be related to a development issue in South Asia.

Spend no more than 10-15 minutes 4-5 days a week for four weeks and surf the internet (as well as conventional media sources) to see what coverage exists. Maintain a diary in which you put these links. For each entry, write a line or two on what you think about it, and/or the questions it raises for you.

At the end of the four weeks (and ideally a little beforehand), think about how you might be able to connect your media diary-- now and "archive"-- to a broader historical question. It might make sense to choose a topic that connects in one way or another with one of the three themes we tackle during this term-- the Green Revolution (energy/environment/consumerism/agriculture), dams (energy/environment/consumerism/water/hydroelectric power), or population control (gender/sexuality/health). In this case you will have a reading list that you can draw from to write your essay -- as you, in other words, work as an historian of the present.

Some sources you may like to consult include: contemporary South Asian newspaper websites.

There is a great list of these and links to them available at

http://www.southasianist.info/india/news.html

and vast additional resources at

http://www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb/indiv/southasia/cuvl/

This essay is due Tuesday, February 10 (Reading Week).