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Film Review Assignment #1 – Life and Debt: A Critical Analysis of International Economic System

Objective of the Assignment

Film Review Assignment #1 - Due November 26 Attached Files: File Bercuson PLS300 Film Review Assignment #1 and Rubric.pdf Bercuson PLS300 Film Review Assignment #1 and Rubric.pdf - Alternative Formats (618.877 KB) Icon of a pencil and list of items to complete PLS300: Political Ideologies Instructor: Jeffrey Bercuson ([email protected]) Film Review  Due November 26 The purpose of this assignment is for you to provide a close, careful reading of Stephanie Black’s 2001 film, Life and Debt, and to connect the film to the readings, ideas and themes of PLS300. The film documents the extent to which the international economic system undermines economic and political development in the world’s least developed countries. It is deeply critical of the practices of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, and also tries to show us the ultimately illusory nature of so-called “free” trade. In your review, please answer the following questions: What is the historical and political context of the film? When and where does the film take place? What is the film’s central thesis? What evidence does the film use to advance that thesis? Is this evidence persuasive? Why or why not? You are expected to make extensive use of assigned course material: for this assignment, the articles by Andrew Gamble, James Buchanan and John Williamson are particularly relevant. Of course, you are also welcome, but not obligated, to consult additional secondary material. Directions and Reminders The film is available at the Newnham Library (Call #HC154 .L54 2001). You can also stream the film online by going to the Library home page. Type "Life and Debt" in the search bar, and select the "Online access" link. Spelling and grammar count. Your grade is based on constructing a convincing argument and a poorly written paper is not very convincing. Essay style is also important. You must have a clear thesis, which you set out to prove through supporting claims backed up by evidence. I encourage you to make use of the Writing Exchange program at the Seneca College Learning Centre ( Please make sure to properly cite all sources and to include all relevant references in an attached bibliography. You may use any citation method (MLA, APA, Chicago, etc.) you like as long as you do so consistently. Please avoid cover sheets, but make sure to have a header. This header should consist of your name, the course number and name, the date, the name of your instructor, as well as the assignment ("Film Review #1") in the upper left corner of your review. Please also include the word count at the end of the review. Students are required to submit an electronic copy of the assignment (in.docx format) to SafeAssign on Blackboard. Please keep electronic and hard copies of your assignments before submitting them, as well as keep drafts and rough work until all assignments have been returned.

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