First Contact




Final Research Paper Information


Using your Weekly Learning Journal as a starting point, write a 1,500 ~ 2,000 word research paper using the MLA (Modern Language Association) style on any one of the following topics:

1) Explaining the advantages or disadvantages of either the Japanese “homogeneous” society or the American “multicultural” society. (Expository Essay)

2) Arguing for or against the necessity of romance and/or marriage in modern society (Argumentative Essay)

3) Compare and contrast the roles of men and women in American and Japanese societies (Compare/Contrast Essay)


Follow these rules and guidelines when writing your paper:

  • Write your name, student number, institution, and class name in the upper left corner of the paper.
  • Include a title in the top center of your first page just before your text. Do not boldface  underline, or italicize your title.
  • Type on one side of the paper only.
  • Use Times New Roman font, size 12.
  • Double space throughout.
  • Use proper indenting for the paragraphs (regular indent) and the Works Cited page (hanging indent).
  • The paper must have a clear introduction, body, and conclusion.
  • Use in-text citations for all quotes, paraphrases, and summaries.
  • Include a separate Works Cited page at the end of your paper.
  • You must use at least two  print sources (i.e., books, magazines, newspapers, or academic journals) and two Internet sources.

Print out and keep any Internet sources you use for future reference.



Refer to the following for guidance on how to quote, paraphrase, and summarize in the MLA style.

Using Someone Else’s Words

MLA In-Text Citations: The Basics : Purdue Writing Lab

MLA Formatting Quotations : Purdue Writing Lab


Use the following link (Citation Machine) to write your Works Cited page.



Papers must use individual research (at least four sources as stated above) in addition to materials we used in class. Be sure to give credit to your sources.


Final Research Papers are due by midnight of the last class meeting (Week 14). Essays may be submitted directly in class or via email at tdv1958@yahoo.com.


Final Small Group Presentations

Form a small group of four to five people and prepare a Final Presentation on a specific topic related to our three main themes for the term – The Roles of Men and Women in Society, The Homogeneous Versus the Multicultural Society, and Love and Marriage  Please use a topic different from the the one you will be using for your Final Research Paper (see Week 11). Get approval from the instructor as to the specific topic you wish to explore.

Get together with your group and research the topic for an ten- to twelve-minute group presentation. Each member should speak during the presentation (around two minutes each), so divide up the presentation into appropriate parts (i.e., introduction, main points, conclusion).

See the PDF files below from the Spring Term for information on how to give a formal presentation:

Giving Presentations

Presentations Body Language

See also the following PDF files for additional information on how to give a persuasive speech:

How to Write a Persuasive Speech

Delivering a Persuasive Speech

Persuasive and Emotive Language


Use Power Point for your Final Presentation. Any number of tutorial videos are available on You Tube. Feel free to use the video below or use your own tutorials if you wish:


Presentations will be given in Week 14.

If you are unable to attend for any reason, please notify the instructor via email.


Group members should be prepared to deliver the presentation in its entirety even in the event of an absence by one or more individuals members, so make sure everybody has access to the presentation script and PowerPoint slides.

Please submit your PowerPoint file to the instructor at tdv1958@yahoo.com by midnight of Week 14 in order to receive full credit for the presentation.

Is Marriage Still Necessary in the Modern World?


Read the following articles discussing the question as to whether or not marriage is still necessary in our modern world. The articles present opposing viewpoints on the issue.

Love Stories: Is Marriage Necessary? | Psychology Today

Does Marriage Even Make Sense Anymore? – Personal Growth – Medium

The Necessity of Marriage | The Heritage Foundation

Prepare for the next class by writing your thoughts on this issue (minimum 250 words) in the Leave a Reply section below, considering the following DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

What are the pros and cons of marriage in the 21st Century? How is marriage as an institution viewed in Japan as opposed to America? Which perceptions about marriage are similar in both cultures? Which perceptions are different? Is marriage still relevant in today’s world, or is it an anachronistic tradition? What do you think the future will be like as regards marriage? Will it become irrelevant, or will will people still want to get married? 


Final Essay Information

Using your Weekly Learning Journal as a starting point, write a 750 ~ 1,000 word, five-paragraph essay on any one of the following topics:

1) Explaining some detailed aspect of either the American or the Japanese political systems (Expository Essay)

2) Arguing either for or against the Death Penalty (Argumentative Essay)

3) Explaining the advantages/disadvantages of the American Jury System versus the Japanese Lay Judge system (Compare/Contrast Essay)


Refer to the following for guidance on the basics of essay writing and how to quote, paraphrase, and summarize.

1) The Five-Paragraph Essay

2) Quoting, Paraphrasing, and Summarizing : Purdue Writing Lab

3) Paraphrasing : Purdue Writing Lab

4) Paraphrasing: Sample Essay : Purdue Writing Lab

5) Expository Essays : Purdue Writing Lab

6) Argumentative Essays : Purdue Writing Lab

7) Comparing and Contrasting – The Writing Center


Essays must involve individual research (at least two or three sources) in addition to materials we used in class. Be sure to give credit to your sources. For this assignment, you don’t need to follow specific writing style rules (i.e. the APA [American Psychological Association], the MLA [Modern Language Association], etc.). However, you must cite sources in the text as in the examples that follow:

According to E.B. White, “__________”

Warren states/asserts/claims/notes “_________”

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reports that _________

In his speech to the Diet, Abe said “__________.”

This was evident when he suggested that __________ (Jefferson).

In addition, include a list of sources that you used on a separate page following your essay.


Final Essays are due by midnight of the last class meeting (Week 14). Essays may be submitted directly in class or via email at tdv1958@yahoo.com.



First Contact



photo by Tony Del Vecchio

“Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

— The New Colossus, by Emma Lazarus

(sonnet by Emma Lazarus (184987), written in 1883 and, in 1903, engraved on a bronze plaque inside the lower level of the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty)


The American “Melting Pot”


America’s history is one of immigration. Unlike many other countries around the world, America is a country made up of people from numerous backgrounds and ethnicities. The promise of freedom and opportunity as envisioned in Emma Lazarus’ famous sonnet has drawn millions of people from all corners of the Earth to the country in hopes of a brighter future.

Sebastiano Galella (Great-grandfather of Tony Del Vecchio), who came to America from San Fele, Italy, around 1890 through the immigration center at Ellis Island, Port of New York

Read the following article by the BBC about the so-called American “Melting Pot” and prepare answers to the questions that follow:


PDF File here:

BBC NEWS | Americas | ‘Melting pot’ America


Prepare for the next class by writing your thoughts on this issue (minimum 250 words) in the Leave a Reply section below, considering the following DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

• What is meant by the American “melting pot”?

• Which do you think describes America better — a melting pot, a tossed salad, or a tomato soup” and why?

• What advantages does a multicultural society have or a homogeneous one? What are the disadvantages?

• How does the election (and re-election) of Barack Obama reflect American society as a whole?

• Should people in a multicultural society retain their original cultural identity or try to assimilate into that society as quickly as possible?

• Are all ethnic minorities able to become fully integrated into American society? If not, what is preventing them from doing so?

• What ethnic group does Harvard Professor Samuel Huntington say poses a “threat to American identity?” What does he mean by that? Is America heading for, or are we already experiencing, the kind of “clash of civilizations” that Huntington described in his provocative thesis?


PDF file here:

Samuel Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations | HistoryOrb.com

• In a country where people come from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds, what kinds of “glue” do you think holds the society together?

How many generations do you think it would normally take a family from a foreign country to fully assimilate into a new culture? What do you think might delay such an assimilation?

• Discuss the significance of Emma Lazarus’ poem. What does this say about America? Has America kept the promise she described to its many immigrants?