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Analysis 2: Is Media a Good Influence on Society
The Purpose of the Assignment: Plato believes poetry—particularly stories and myths told to young people—to be crucial in forming their characters. His sense seems to be that the kind of art we are saturated with informs our beliefs, our opinions, and ultimately determines our character.
The purpose of this assignment is for you to test Plato’s hypothesis. Do your own investigation and come to a conclusion about how, and how much, the media we are exposed to influences us.
How to Cite:
Plato has a few interesting rules on poetry. There a lot of places online (course hero, spraknotes, etc) that will discuss some of his rules. Please understand: you must cite. Providing the rules without citations will lower your grade. Below is an example of how to cite within your analysis when using the Republic:
On line 383a of Plato’s Republic, Plato states that when it comes to portraying the gods, “they are not sorcerers who change themselves nor do they mislead us by falsehoods in words or deeds.” The second rule, then, is that poetry should portray the gods as truth-telling and true in every way. Since Plato believes people will use the behavior of gods and heroes to justify their own (391e) this suggests that one of Plato’s intentions is that guardians should only have models of forthright honesty, and have no excuse for dishonesty.
The reader must always know where you obtained the information. If you use other sources, other than the Republic, cite in a meaningful way like you did in Analysis 1.
The Assignment
For this assignment, you will write an analysis of your research, basically an analysis of what you learned about Plato’s beliefs and whether or not his belief’s have validity in today’s world as it relates to the influence media has on us as a society.
Prep work for this assignment. Before you begin writing, you must do the following:
1. Read the excerpts from Plato’s Republic: Read Plato’s Republic Book III. Preview the document and answer the following questions:
What are Socrates rules for poetry?
What does he want to edit out of Homer’s poetry?
What kinds of things does he want to include in the poetry that young people should listen to?
Choose two rules and explain why Socrates wants to make these rules. What effects does he think unedited or bad poetry will have on people who read it.
Cite using quotes or paraphrases from the text as evidence to support what you are arguing.
Requirement: Each person should do the above. Then use the notes to discuss before writing the analysis.
Every student must submit their notes. Don’t worry about making them look pretty. I just want to see what steps you took to analyze and come to a conclusion.
2. Choose a form of contemporary media that you will use as an example to support your position of whether or not Plato is right in his belief that the media has a negative influence on society. See the options below but you may use one that isn’t listed:
Television (Hulu, Netflix)
Twitter
TikTok
Instagram (including Instagram influencers like the Kardashians)
Facebook
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Youtubers
Suggestion: Meet to discuss this and choose ONE (1). You will be including your example in your paper, so make sure what you choose is from a public account. Do not post from private social media accounts, unless they are your account(s). You must cite this media.
3. Then, using the Internet, research this type of media influence (the one you chose), and take notes addressing the following:
Is the media you have chosen successful at influencing people?
Are there studies/documented research indicating whether or not it is successful?
What kind of influence does the media you have chosen have? (For example, do they get people to buy things, to behave in certain ways, to think certain things/have certain beliefs).
Reflect on the influence of media. Are there times when you have been influenced by media and, if so, when? AND discuss whether or not you think media influence is a good or a bad thing. Is it helpful to people? Damaging? Why/why not? Be specific.
Requirement: Each person should do the above and submit a summary of your findings. Tell me what you learned and where you learned it.
4. Write the Analysis. Once you have completed the above, meet and begin writing your analysis. Your analysis should be presented in the following format:
1. An Introduction (of 50 to 100 words) that briefly explains what you learned from Plato’s Republic and your research on your chosen media. You are basically providing your reader with background info– don’t assume your reader is aware of the assignment. They are just a reader.
Include your thesis in your intro. Your thesis should reflect your position. Sample Thesis: This submission (analysis or paper) supports Plato’s idea that the media is a bad influence on society. This paper supports that idea by showing how Plato’s rules which state……. supports how Facebook has a negative impact on relationships.
2. A Body (of 200 to 300 words) divided into paragraphs that includes the following:
1. Paragraph 1 discusses your analysis of Plato’s Republic, basically, your explanation of his rules (only focus on one or two (at the most) for poetry and the reasons why he makes each rule. Remember this section should include citations to support what you are saying. Remember to cite.
2. Paragraph 2 discusses what you learned in your media section and how what Plato says about the media is right or wrong (This depends on your position). Be sure to include the following:
An image from the media source your chose. This image should show what you are arguing for or against (one example might be a photo of an Instagram influencer giving his/her or opinion on a topic he/she has no business giving an d opinion on). Remember to cite what you learned in your research as support.
Under the photo should be your short explanation of who the person is (if there is someone in the photo), their roles, and what they (or the image) is/are doing.
Under the short explanation, write out your analysis of their influence on people. This can include your own personal experiences with being influenced or resisting influence, or the experience of influence in your own life.
3. A conclusion (of 75 to 100) which briefly summarizes what you learned and your position on whether you think Plato is right to think that media has a bad influence on society.
4. Works Cited Page
EVERY student in the group must contribute to the writing of the analysis.
Submission Guidelines
Submit ONE document with the following information. Use the titles and and format below:
Title of Assignment and Member Names
I. Notes from Plato’s Republic:
Student Name Notes
II. Notes from Internet Search
Student Summary of Findings
III. The Analysis (Single-spaced with an additional space between paragraphs)

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