Desert Arts and Social Justice Essay Project
The Argumentative Essay . However, I am asking you to read the prompt now so that you can begin thinking about and planning your essay.
Argumentative Essay Instructions
Select ONE of the following paintings to analyze in your essay:
Painting #1: Untitled subway chalk drawing, 1983
Painting #2: Untitled, May 31, 1984
Painting #3: Crack is Wack, 1986
Painting #4: Silence Equals Death, 1989
Your essay must focus exclusively on ONE painting. Do not try to analyze multiple paintings or Haring’s art career in general. Pick one of the above paintings, and respond to the following question:
How does Haring’s painting (the specific painting that you’ve selected) communicate a message of social justice?
Your essay should have a clear thesis statement that answers the above question. In order to answer the above question, your thesis must:
clearly state the specific social message that the painting communicates (the cause or group of people it advocates for, or a problem in modern society that it tries to raise awareness about)
describe HOW Haring’s imagery and/or style of painting communicates the social message (i.e. HOW does Haring manage to send a specific social message using visual forms, like color, line, shape, symbol, etc.)
Your thesis statement should come at the very end of your introductory paragraph. In your body paragraphs, you must support your thesis (ARGUE and CONVINCE your reader that your interpretation of the painting’s social message is correct) by analyzing specific images in the painting and explaining how these images work together to create the painting’s overall social message. You should use appropriately detailed vocabulary Download detailed vocabularywhen you’re describing the painting’s imagery and style. Make sure that each paragraph focuses only on 1 or 2 important details in the painting and makes an argument for how these details communicate the social justice message that you identified in your thesis statement. Do NOT try to describe the entire painting in one paragraph. Rather, each paragraph should zoom in on 1 or 2 important images or techniques that Haring uses to communicate his message. By narrowing each paragraph down in this way, you will have the space to go into a lot of detail and to do a deep, rather than hasty, analysis of how Haring uses specific images to communicate his message. Try to analyze a different image, or couple of images, in each paragraph and avoid repeating things that you’ve already said in a previous paragraph. Then, in your conclusion, you can summarize how the images, which you’ve analyzed in different paragraphs, all work together to create the social impact that Haring wanted the painting to have.
In your essay, you must also include 2 quotations from the essays we read about Keith Haring’s art. One quotation must come from Keith Haring’s RollingStone interview, and one quotation must come from Dieter Buchhart’s essay, “The Endless Political Line.” You should select quotations that are relevant to points that you are making in your essay–in other words, only choose a quotation that can help you make YOUR argument about the social message of Haring’s painting. You must properly integrate the quotation into your writing and then analyze it by explaining how it supports your interpretation of the painting’s social message. I recommend that you use the quotations in your body paragraphs (1 quotation in each of your body paragraphs), but if you think it makes sense to put a quotation in your introduction and/or conclusion, I’m fine with that. But generally, it is most helpful to add quotations into body paragraphs because the quotations serve as additional evidence and the body paragraphs are the meat of your argument.