Web Project Instructions SPN350/LAS370S/MAS374 Fall 2005

Prof. J. Nicolopulos


Project Mission Statement:

The goal of this project is to put up useful, informative web-pages about important, representative corridos that will serve as a continuing resource for students, researchers and others interested in Mexican and Mexican American popular culture and folklore. In addition to the technical aspects of mounting materials on the Web, the project requires careful research and organization. It cannot be reiterated enough that it is not sufficient to merely put up a page or two of audio,images and text, with perhaps a paragraph or so of superficial "analysis." The expectation is that the primary material will be thoroughly researched and analyzed; furthermore, the same type of meticuluous documentation of sources as that expected in the case of a research term paper is required for this project. The basic steps involved include the following:

A) Identify the corrido or corrido cycle that will be the focus of your project. For the purposes of these web-pages, it is preferable to concentrate on corridos for which we have an adequate sound recording of at least one, good example. A suggested selection of corridos will be found below. In general, these will either be corridos related to the Mexican revolution and/or the Mexican American experience, particularly in Texas. It is also at this stage that a small (2-4 persons) group of students should form a working team organized around mutual interest in the topic.

B) Research. The exact procedures during this phase will vary according to the subject chosen. In general, this will involve library and/or archival research. In the case of some previously un-researched (or under-researched) Texas corridos, this may also include some field work, interviews, etc. The basic goal is to collect as much information as possible about the historical/social/cultural circumstances that form the context with in which the target corrido was produced and "consumed." With regard to some historical corridos this will involve finding out whatever details are available about the actual incident (battle, assasination, murder, court case, strike, confrontation, etc.) that is commemorated in the corrido in question. Often the first step in this process will be consulting the text itself for pertinent details (date, place, names, etc.) in order to orient the bibliographic or archival research.

In the case of a corrido or cycle that treats a more general aspect of community experience (migrant labor issues, immigration, Prohibition, gender-determined roles and behaviors), the team will have to research the broader historical and/or cultural circumstances in order to place the text in its socio-cultural context. As in the case of mostcorridos, it will also be necessary to compare the selected text to other known versions, and to engage in some literary, textual analysis. Each team will have to apportion these tasks among its members as best serves the success of the project.

B.1) Photographs and/or other graphic materials. An important component of an informative web-page is visual. In addition to finding written or recorded information, the team will have to search out appropriate graphic materials. These will then be scanned into JPEG or GIF files, and incorporated into the final presentation. Such materials may include photographs, engravings, drawings, paintings, covers of books or broadside illustrations, and maps, graphs, etc.

C) Processing of raw research data. This is a key phase of the project. The team will again have to divide up responsibility for organizing and digesting the information collected during the research phase. Pertinent information will have to be analyzed, summarized and presented in written form. This will also include providing transcriptions and, hopefully, translations, of the corrido(s) targeted. Graphic materials will have to be appropriately labelled, and incorporated into the overall presentation of the subject, along with QuickTime movies of any video footage, and MP3 formatted audio files. All materials for the team's site will then be assembled on a "flash" disk (or ZIP disk if necessary) prior to up-loading to the server.

D) With the assistance of the instructor and LAITS Computer Lab personnel, we will put everything into HTML form with appropriate links, and make our project "sing" to the world!!!

Suggested Topics


A. The Mexican Revolution.

B. Corridos of the Mexican American Experience.

Para comentarios, sugerencias o adiciones: ixtabay@uts.cc.utexas.edu

SPN350/LAS370S/MAS374 STUDENTS ONLY: Please send your proposals, comments, questions, etc., to the class and/or instructor via BlackBoard.

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