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El Arquetipo Del Narco Mexicano En La Novela, El Cine, Y La Música

Description: Various groups of Mexican culture have assigned to el narco archetypical characteristics of a heroic figure in the literary, visual, and auditory arts. As a result, today’s narcocultura has expanded its tentacles to a vast array of prominent industries, such as publishing companies, the silver screen, and recording studios. El narco is no longer seen by some sectors as the outlaw that stalks our society but, instead, as a hero who fights against a hegemonic faction to reclaim his sovereignty. This thesis unites interdisciplinary observations of the narco phenomena that Mexican culture has assigned to the iconic figure of el narco. The purpose of this work is to recreate the evolutionary development through a theoretical-literary analysis of this prototype in order to better understand Mexican society’s stance on this phenomenon. Octavio Paz’s theory of the Mexican psyche, Joseph Campbell’s theory of the hero’s journey, and an interdisciplinary focus will be employed to analyze this iconic figure. In this thesis, my aim is to investigate how an ultra-conservative Mexican society evolved into a consortium that upholds the narco’s indistinct behaviors and actions. What roles do first world governments and the Mexican state play to fortify, eradicate, or control the narco phenomenon? Finally, which is the most prudent strategy to coexist in a world alongside the narco?
Date: May 2014
Creator: González, Jesús Ángel
Partner: UNT Libraries

Conjugal Rights in Flux in Medieval Poetry

Description: This study explores how four medieval poems—the Junius manuscript’s Genesis B and Christ and Satan and Geoffrey Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde and The Parliament of Fowls—engage with medieval conjugal rights through their depictions of agentive female protagonists. Although many laws at this time sought to suppress the rights of women, especially those of wives’, both pre- and post-conquest poets illustrate women who act as subjects, exercising legal rights. Medieval canon and common law supported a certain amount of female agency in marriage but was not consistent in its understanding of what that was. By considering the shifts in law from Anglo-Saxon and fourteenth century England in relation to wives’ rights and female consent, my project asserts that the authors of Genesis B and Christ and Satan and the late-medieval poet Chaucer position their heroines to defend legislation that supports female agency in matters of marriage. The Anglo-Saxon authors do so by conceiving of Eve’s role in the Fall and harrowing of hell as similar to the legal role of a forespeca. Through Eve’s mimesis of Satan’s rhetoric, she is able to reveal an alternate way of conceiving of the law as merciful instead of legalistic. Chaucer also engages with a woman’s position in society under the law through his representation of Criseyde’s role in her courtship with Troilus in his epic romance, Troilus and Criseyde. Chaucer disrupts his audiences’ expectations by placing Criseyde as the more agentive party in her courtship with Troilus and shows that women might hope to the most authority in marriage by withholding their consent. In his last dream vision, The Parliament of Fowls, Chaucer engages again with the importance of female consent in marriage but takes his interrogation of conjugal rights a step further by imagining an alternate legal system through Nature, a female authority ...
Date: May 2014
Creator: Ward, Jessica D.
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Curious Collection of Visitors: Travels to Early Modern Cabinets of Curiosity and Museums in England, 1660-1800

Description: The idea of curiosity has evolved over time and is a major building-block in the foundation and expansion of museums and their precursors, cabinets of curiosity. These proto-museums began in Italy and spread throughout Europe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Cabinets of curiosity and museums transformed as visitors traveled to burgeoning collections across the Continent and England. Individuals visited curiosities for a variety of reasons. Some treated outings to collections as social events in which they could see others in their social circles and perhaps rise in social status if seen by the correct people. Others were merely curious and hoped to see rare, astonishing, monstrous, and beautiful objects. Scholars of the era often desired to discover new items and ideas, and discuss scientific and philosophical matters. The British Isles are removed from the main body of Europe, but still play a major role in the history of collecting. A number of private collectors and the eventual foundation of the British Museum contributed seminally to the ever-increasing realm of curiosities and historic, cultural, and scientific artifacts. The collectors and collections of Oxford and London and its surrounding areas, drew a diverse population of visitors to their doors. Individuals, both foreign and local, female and male, visitors and collectors in Early Modern England chose to actively participate in the formation of a collecting culture by gathering, visiting, discussing, writing about, and publishing on collections.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Puyear, Lauren K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Hip-hop’s Tanning of a Postmodern America: a Longitudinal Content Analysis of Paradoxical Juxtapositions of Oppositional Identities Within Us Rap Song Lyrics, 1980-2013

Description: A longitudinal content analysis of top-chart hip-hop songs’ lyrics produced between 1980 and 2013 was conducted to investigate the degree and progression of the paradoxical juxtaposition, or postmodern hybridity, of oppositional modernist identities in terms of race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, sexuality, and economic lifestyle, in addition to the longitudinal diversification of artist’s race and gender demographics. Demographically, the percentage of non-African-American artists increased as the percentage of African-American artists decreased. Additionally, the percentage of songs featuring either all male or all female artists decreased, while the percentage of collaboration between male and female artists increased over time. Although hybrid oppositional identities related to race/ethnicity and gender did not increase over time, those of sexual orientation, sexuality, and economic lifestyle increased over time. In addition, materialist identities were related to the hybridity of sexual orientation and sexuality, but not to that of gender and race/ethnicity. Overall, the research found increasing postmodern hybridity within the sexualization of hip-hop songs along with intensified materialism.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Gadley, Shawn A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

En La Frontera Entre La Vida Y La Muerte: a Study of Women Reporters on the Us–mexico Border

Description: In 2008 Ciudad Juarez erupted in a violent drug war. The Sinaloa Cartel and Juarez Cartel were in a battle for the lucrative drug route used to smuggle drugs into the United States, while President Felipe Calderon was waging his own war against all the drug cartels. During the height of the violence women journalists emerged on the front lines to tell the stories of Juarez. They risked their lives and dared to tell a story that others refused to. This mixed-method study examines frames used most often in the coverage of the drug war in Ciudad Juarez from 2008-2010. It examines The New York Times, the El Paso Times, and El Norte and also examines articles by the sex of the reporter. It also used in-depth interviews of both Mexican and American woman journalists who covered the drug war in Juarez to examine which themes developed about the reporter’s experiences in covering the drug war.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Guzman, Samantha
Partner: UNT Libraries

Socioeconomic Status and Prosperity Belief in Guatemala

Description: A popular belief in the exploding Pentecostal movement in the global South is the idea that if an individual has enough faith, God will bless them with financial prosperity. Although historically Pentecostalism has been identified as a religion of the poor, this study examines recent arguments that the current Pentecostal movement in Guatemala is a religion of the socially mobile middle and elite classes. Data from the Pew Forum on Religious and Public Life’s 2006 survey Spirit and Power: Survey of Pentecostals in Guatemala is used to conduct a logistic regression, in order to measure the effects of socioeconomic status on adherence to prosperity belief. Results suggest that, contrary to the current literature on Guatemalan Pentecostalism, prosperity belief is not necessarily concentrated among the upwardly mobile middle and upper classes, but rather is widely diffused across social strata, and in particular, among those that have lower levels of education. These findings have implications for the study of Pentecostalism in Guatemala and in the global South in general.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Johnson, Lindsey A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Paralysis As “Spiritual Liberation” in Joyce’s Dubliners

Description: In James Joyce criticism, and by implication Irish and modernist studies, the word paralysis has a very insular meaning. The word famously appears in the opening page of Dubliners, in “The Sisters,” which predated the collection’s 1914 publication by ten years, and in a letter to his publisher Grant Richards. The commonplace conception of the word is that it is a metaphor that emanates from the literal fact of the Reverend James Flynn’s physical condition the narrator recalls at the beginning of “The Sisters.” As a metaphor, paralysis has signified two immaterial, or spiritual, states: one individual or psychological and the other collective or social. The assumption is that as a collective and individual signifier, paralysis is the thing from which Ireland needs to be freed. Rather than relying on this received tradition of interpretation and assumptions about the term, I consider that paralysis is a two-sided term. I argue that paralysis is a problem and a solution and that sometimes what appears to be an escape from paralysis merely reinforces its negative manifestation. Paralysis cannot be avoided. Rather, it is something that should be engaged and used to redefine individual and social states.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Heister, Iven Lucas
Partner: UNT Libraries

“Werewolves and Time Machines”

Description: This collection consists of a critical preface and five short stories. The preface considers the use of the fantastical in fiction and how it works as a tool to reach readers in comparison with realistic fiction. The stories investigate this in by following several strange characters put in everyday human situations.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Edwards, Frisco
Partner: UNT Libraries

Underground Men: Alternative Masculinities and the Politics of Performance in African American Literature and Culture

Description: This study explores intersections between performance, race and masculinity within a variety of expressive cultural contexts during and after the African American Civil Rights Movement. I maintain that the work of James Baldwin is best situated to help us navigate this cross section, as his fiction and cultural criticism focus heavily on the stage in all its incarnations as a space for negotiating the possibilities and limits of expressive culture in combating harmful racial narratives imposed upon black men in America. My thesis begins with a close reading of the performers populating his story collection Going to Meet the Man (1965) before broadening my scope in the following chapters to include analyses of the diametric masculinities in the world of professional boxing and the black roots of the American punk movement. Engaging with theorists like Judith Butler, bell hooks and Paul Gilroy, Underground Men attempts to put these seemingly disparate corners of American life into a dynamic conversation that broadens our understanding through a novel application of critical race, gender and performance theories. Baldwin and his orbiting criticism remain the hub of my investigation throughout, and I use his template of black genius performance outlined in works like Tell Me How Long the Train’s Been Gone (1967) and Just Above My Head (1977) to aid our understanding of how performance prescribes and scrambles dominant narratives about black men after the sexual revolution.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Gray, Jezy J.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Remembering the Forgotten D-day: the Amphibious Landing at Collado Beach During the Mexican War

Description: The current historiography of the Mexican War does not give due credit to the significance of the landing at Collado Beach. No one source addresses all aspects of the landing, nor have any included an analysis of the logistical side of the operation. This thesis presents a comprehensive analysis of the operation from conception to execution in an attempt to fill the gap in the historiography. Additionally, the lessons learned and lessons forgotten from this landing are addressed as to how this landing shaped American military doctrine regarding joint operations and amphibious operations. The conclusion drawn from the historical sources supports the argument that this operation had a significant impact on the American military. The influence of this operation shows itself throughout American military history, including the establishment of amphibious doctrine by the Unites States Marine Corps and during World War II.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Menking, Christopher N.
Partner: UNT Libraries

“The Inevitable: Withdrawn”

Description: The Inevitable: Withdrawn is a critical preface and collection of non-fiction writing: personal essay, lyric essay, fragments, and experimental forms. The work’s cohesive subject matter is the author’s European vacation directly following her divorce. Within the pieces, the author attempts to reconcile who she is when starting over and she begins to ask questions regarding the human condition: How do I learn to exhibit intimacy again, not just with romantic partners, but with also in a familial way with my father, and how does absence in these relationships affect my journey and how I write about it? How do I view, and remake myself, when finding my identity that was tied to another individual compromised? How does a body, both physical and belonging to me, and physical as text, take certain shapes to reflect my understanding? How do I define truth, and how do I interpret truth and authenticity in both experience and writing? How do I define and know the difference between belief and truth? And finally, how does narrative and language protect, or expose me? The Inevitable: Withdrawn considers debates regarding the definition of narrative in order to address a spectrum of non-fiction writing. The collection takes into consideration non-fiction conventions, form as functionality, philosophy, linguistics, cognitive psychology, prose and poetic theory, and the works of other notable writers.
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Date: May 2014
Creator: Christy, Gwendolyn Anne
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Cross-cultural Textual Analysis of Western and South Korean Newspaper Coverage of North Korean Women Defectors and Victims of Human Trafficking

Description: Trafficking women for sexual abuse has been a serious concern worldwide, particularly over the last two decades. The International Labour Organization (ILO) estimated that illicit profits of human trafficking may be as high as $32 billion. However, the international media community has scarcely focused on North Korean women defectors and victims of human trafficking, despite the severity of the issue. More than two million North Koreans, predominantly women, have crossed borders to enter China from starvation. Among those women migrants, about 80% to 90% of them were abducted by traffickers at the border between North Korea and China, and the traffickers sold them to the Chinese sex industry or Chinese men who are unable to find a woman as a wife or a sex slave.This cross-cultural textual analysis examined South Korean and Western (U.S. and British) newspaper coverage of North Korean women as victims of human trafficking to discover similarities and differences in those countries’ news frames. The analysis has shown that politics was a crucial factor in the coverage of the issue. However, by generally failing to report on the fundamental causes of the trafficking, such as inequality between genders, both Western and South Korean newspapers perpetuated hegemonic masculinity and failed to inform and educate people about the grave situations of North Korean women defectors and victims of human trafficking. This study recommends that in reporting the trafficking issues, journalists must be able to observe objectively, not within ideologies or frames provided by politicians.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Chong, Miyoung
Partner: UNT Libraries

Across Borders and Barlines: Chicana/o Literature, Jazz Improvisation, and Contrapuntal Solidarity

Description: In this study, I examine Chicana/o writings and Black and Brown musical traditions as they entwine in urban centers and inform local visions of inclusion and models of social change. By analyzing literature and music from South Texas, Southern California, and Northeastern Michigan, I detail how the social particularities of each zone inform Chicana/o cultural productions rooted in the promise of empowerment and the possibility of cross-cultural solidarity. I assert that highlighting localized variations on these themes amplifies contrapuntal solidarities specific to each region, the relationship between different, locally conceived conceptions of Chicana/o identity, and the interplay between Brown and Black aesthetic practices in urban centers near national borders. Through literary critical and ethnomusicological frameworks, I engage the rhetorical patterns that link poetry, jazz improvisation, essays, musical playlists, and corridos to illumine a web of discourses helping to establish the idiosyncratic yet complimentary cultural mores that shape localized social imaginaries in the United States.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Leal, Jonathan J.
Partner: UNT Libraries

El Cine De Terror Español Como Espejo De La Cultura Española

Description: This study traces the history and culture of Spain as seen through the lens of the nation´s production of horror cinema. Starting from the boom of Spanish horror film in the early 1960s, the thesis compares and contrasts the political and social aspects of Spanish society throughout three distinct eras of the 20th century: 1962 – 1975 (the boom of Spanish horror film through the Franco dictatorship), 1975 – 1999 (the transition to democracy through the end of the 20th century) and 2000 – present (the 21st century). Movies as diverse as Gritos en la noche (1962, Jesús Franco), ¿Quién puede matar a un niño? (1976, Narciso Ibáñez Serrador) and Angustia (1987, Bigas Luna) are framed by culturally-related anectodes as well as correlations to their respective social environments. Special attention has been paid to the production and release of each film, especially in regards to censorship during the Franco dictatorship. The results show that Spanish horror cinema has acted as a true mirror to culture, society and politics in its native country throughout the 20th century and that this trend will likely extend in to the future.
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Date: May 2014
Creator: Donahue, Tyler
Partner: UNT Libraries

“Madness” in the Media: How Can Print Journalists Better Report on Mental Illnesses?

Description: Stereo types and stigmas of individuals with mental illnesses have proved to be a major roadblock preventing these individuals from seeking help. The news media, despite having a responsibility to accurately inform the public, has played a significant role in portraying individuals with mental illness as violent, unpredictable, dangerous, and unfit to live with the rest of “normal” society. This happens through the words journalists choose to use and the information they choose in included, and excluded, when reporting on mental health issues. This study attempts to establish a guideline that journalists can follow that will hopefully reduce the stigma of mental illness in the media, and eventually in society. This study used a 2 x 2 ANCOVA to test two independent variables (amount of labeling terms and amount of corrective information). The variables were manipulated by modifying a news article four times to produce articles with varying levels of labeling terms and corrective information. A control article was also be used. The articles were randomized and passed out to 220 undergraduate college students at the University of North Texas who completed a questionnaire, read their assigned article, and then completed a second questionnaire to determine the impact the article had on their attitudes about individuals with mental illnesses.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Cousineau, Anna Desiree
Partner: UNT Libraries

"Stealing Dreams" and Other Stories

Description: The critical preface, "Learning to Break the Rules" discusses workshop rules as guidelines, as well as how and why I learned to break them. The creative portion of this thesis is made up of eight short stories: "The Many Incarnations of Blazer Chief," "Anna's Monsters," "The Pecan Tree's Daughter," "When the Seas Emptied," "The Umbrella Thief," "How to Forget," "Fracture," and "Stealing Dreams."
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Date: December 2014
Creator: Matthews, Elise
Partner: UNT Libraries

Violetting Through August’s End (Or the Sunset in Water, the Carillon-chime in Square): an Original Chamber Opera and a Critical Essay on the Trajectory of American Minimalist Opera

Description: When the dust settles, John Adams’s Nixon in China and Philip Glass’s Einstein on the Beach may stand as the most important operas of the latter twentieth century. The critical essay portion of this thesis examines the trajectory of minimalist opera, from its beginnings with Glass’s Einstein on the Beach through the more romantic operas of John Adams, Steve Reich’s multimedia opera The Cave, David Lang’s musical-influenced The Difficulty of Crossing a Field, and finally the post-minimalist operas currently being staged by young composer Nico Muhly. It examines the differences between the more abstract trajectory established by the early Glass operas and the plot driven trajectory established by operas more commonly associated with John Adams, most significantly Nixon in China. Additionally, the aforementioned pieces are compared and contrasted with the author’s newly composed chamber opera Violetting through August’s End (or the sunset in water, the carillon-chime in square).
Date: December 2014
Creator: Doyle, James Joseph
Partner: UNT Libraries

Antón Arrufat’s Los Siete Contra Tebas: Political Allegory and Anthropological Concepts As Vehicles to Portray Theatrical and Social Conflict

Description: This thesis (i) presents a critical analysis of the political allegory and dramatic elements employed by Antón Arrufat in Los siete contra Tebas in order to comment upon the conflict in Cuban society during and immediately after the Cuban revolution; and (ii) further analyzes that conflict using an anthropological approach in order to establish partial reintegration as an additional final phase in the rites of passage journey.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Gosch, Elizabeth Anna
Partner: UNT Libraries

Still on the Sidelines: the Female Experience in Sports Media

Description: This qualitative study aims to analyze the lived reality of women working in sports media today. Through systematic analysis of 12 in-depth interviews, the findings of this study suggest that the adoption of technological advancements in news media and all associated outlets have created a leveling effect for women due to the demand for highly skilled individuals who can handle the digital demand of modern news production. This study suggests that longtime gender disparities in sports media are experiencing a bit of a reprieve due to the massive digital audience and the need for professionals who can deliver information quickly and efficiently and with accuracy. However, the persistent symbolic annihilation of women as well as hegemonic hiring practices that emphasize aesthetic appeal have created a difficult path for women to move off the sidelines and into roles with more creative and analytical breadth, even with a rapidly increasing demand for jobs in the media industry.
Date: December 2014
Creator: Blankenship, Sara K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Perception and Viability of English Corner on the American Campus

Description: International students are often under considerable pressure from language barriers, culture shock, social isolation and lack of social support in American universities. Those stressors often discourage international students as ESL learners from practicing English with native students on campus. Based on Krashen & Terrell’s subconscious acquisition and conscious learning hypothesis, Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development , Cummins’ Basic Interpersonal Communication System (BICS) and Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency (CALP), Horwitz’s language anxiety and Oxford’s indirect learning strategies , this study explores how international students and American students, respectively, perceive English Corner and whether English Corner could be an applicable out-of-class learning environment for international students to practice English and socialize with American students on American campuses. English Corner refers to regular meetings that English learners in Mainland China voluntarily organize in public places to practice spoken English. A survey was conducted on language learning strategies, socialization, acculturation, autonomy and English Corner among international students and native students at the University of North Texas. The questionnaires were adapted from Oxford and Nyikos’ study as to what variables affect choice of language learning strategies, Iheanacho’s study as to how international students use the Morris Library at the University of Delaware and their perception of library services and programs, and Battle’s study as to how information literacy instruction affects library anxiety among international students. The findings of this study may help American universities realize the importance of English Corner as one optimal intervention program for international students and American students. The support for English Corner may help international students improve their English learning, alleviate their language anxiety and create more opportunities for international students and native students to socialize with each other.
Date: December 2014
Creator: Hu, Jiaying
Partner: UNT Libraries

“The Angular Degrees of Freedom” and Other Stories

Description: The preface, " Performing Brain Surgery: The Problematic Nature of Endings in Short Fiction," deals with the many and varied difficulties short story writers encounter when attempting to craft endings. Beginning with Raymond Carver and Flannery O’Connor and moving to my own work, I discuss some of the obscure criteria used to designate a successful ending, as well as the more concrete idea of the ending as a unifying element. Five short stories make up the remainder of this thesis: "In-between Girls," "Crocodile Man," "Surprising Things, Sometimes Amusing," "Good Jewelry," and "The Angular Degrees of Freedom."
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Date: December 2014
Creator: Feagin, Aprell McQueeney
Partner: UNT Libraries

“Before I Die…”: Original Composition with a Critical Essay Exploring the Techniques of Six Crossover Composers

Description: Candy Chang developed a public art installation where people are given the opportunity to write their answers to "Before I Die I want to ________." in a public space. I created one of these walls in Denton, TX and set it to music in a 12 minutes and 42 second piece titled Before I Die..., which combines elements of South Indian carnatic music, gospel, R&B, jazz fusion, and minimalism. The composition was influenced by the music of several crossover artists Becca Stevens, Michael League (Snarky Puppy), Nico Muhly, Poovalur Sriji, Tigran Hamasyan, and James Blake. Crossover music, fusion, and third-stream are all synonymous terms used to describe music where multiple genres or styles are authentically combined. The purpose of this thesis is to examine the balance of musical elements in crossover works as well as how specific works composed by the artists mentioned have influenced the creation of the Before I Die... piece.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Trusko, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries

Toward Sustainable Community: Assessing Progress at Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage

Description: Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage, an intentional community of roughly 70 members in Northeastern Missouri, is working to create societal change through radical sustainable living practices and creation of a culture of eco-friendly and feminist norms. Members agree to abide by a set of ecological covenants and sustainability guidelines, committing to practices such as using only sustainably generated electricity, and no use or storage of personally owned vehicles on community property. Situated within the context of a sustainability study, this thesis explores how Dancing Rabbit is creating a more socially and ecologically just culture and how this lifestyle affects happiness and well-being.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Jones, Kayla Brooke
Partner: UNT Libraries

Capital Ships, Commerce, and Coalition: British Strategy in the Mediterranean Theater, 1793

Description: In 1793, Great Britain embarked on a war against Revolutionary France to reestablish a balance of power in Europe. Traditional assessments among historians consider British war planning at the ministerial level during the First Coalition to be incompetent and haphazard. This work reassesses decision making of the leading strategists in the British Cabinet in the development of a theater in the Mediterranean by examining political, diplomatic, and military influences. William Pitt the Younger and his controlling ministers pursued a conservative strategy in the Mediterranean, reliant on Allies in the region to contain French armies and ideas inside the Alps and the Pyrenees. Dependent on British naval power, the Cabinet sought to weaken the French war effort by targeting trade in the region. Throughout the first half of 1793, the British government remained fixed on this conservative, traditional approach to France. However, with the fall of Toulon in August of 1793, decisions made by Admiral Samuel Hood in command of forces in the Mediterranean radicalized British policy towards the Revolution while undermining the construct of the Coalition. The inconsistencies in strategic thought political decisions created stagnation, wasting the opportunities gained by the Counter-revolutionary movements in southern France. As a result, reinvigorated French forces defeated Allied forces in detail in the fall of 1793.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Baker, William C.
Partner: UNT Libraries