Introduction to Paper 2: Short Research Paper
After reading Slaughterhouse-Five, we moved on to the study of memorials, including Maya Lin's "Vietnam Veteran Memorial" and the planning process of the 9/11 Reconstruction. While we discussed the function of memorials, one of the assigned readings - "Make History, Not Memory: History's Critique of Memory" by Daniel Abramson - turned out to be a very helpful source that I used in my second paper. Abramson discussed the advantage and disadvantage of memory and pointed out that people should give equal attention to memory and history.
I found the study of memorials very interesting because I love architectures; however, as the class proceeded, I realized memorials can take in many forms that are not limited to architectures - it can be literature, music, visual arts and so on. When we were asked to choose a memorial for any disaster to be our subject in paper 2, I immediately wanted to examine a work of photography that can be regarded as a memorial as I have a deep obsession with this medium. It took me some time to decide on which disaster I would study and find useful sources for it. But the research process was quite enjoyable as I roamed around Mugar library and was surprised by what interesting books I was able to find.