Project #2

Project #2: Overlapping New Yorks (download here)

Colson Whitehead, in “City Limits,” writes about the overlap of different New Yorks, with relics from different eras and different communities co-existing or edging each other out. To observe overlapping New Yorks, walk for approximately 15-20 minutes away from City Tech in any direction you choose. On your walk, look for sites of different New Yorks overlapping—such juxtapositions include old and new, residential and commercial, historic and replaceable, natural and man-made, constructed and under-construction, well maintained and in disrepair, celebrated and forgotten, etc. In a well-organized essay of approximately 900-1200 words, identify one instance of different New Yorks juxtaposed, and compare the two New Yorks based on the elements you can observe using your senses. Incorporate two properly cited quotations from our readings as support or as counterpoint to your argument.

On your walk, record your path, and photograph what you see to include photographs in your assignment. Choose one location where you find two juxtaposed New Yorks that overlap to compare in this project.

To prepare and complete Project #2, write the following blog posts:

  • 9/28: Choose a location. Write your process for walking there so someone else can get there, too. This should be more detailed than Google Maps directions would be. Include descriptions of landmarks to help someone travel the same path you did, noticing the same things you did. If you chose to do any research prior to your walk, write about it here. Add your location to our shared map.
  • 9/30: Brainstorm due in class. For homework: Write a post in which you describe your location, including all sensory experiences you had at the location. Identify the juxtaposition, and explain the elements of the overlap. Include a photograph of the location, and explain how your photograph frames the location. How does it capture your juxtaposition—or how can’t it capture it?
  • 10/5: Complete peer-to-peer review in lab. For homework, write a post in which you explain why have you chosen this subject in particular—what about it is striking to you? What story does it tell you? Consider what you want to know more about as a next step (although conducting this research is not part of this project!) Find 3-4 passages from Colson Whitehead’s writing or other readings that address the idea of different New Yorks and explain each supports or contradicts you’re your observed overlap. Incorporate two of these quotations into your project either to support what you write or to engage their ideas in contrast with your subject and your interpretation of it.
  • 10/14: Post updated draft
  • 10/19: Complete Project #2 with a Works Cited list; post a reflection (instructions on site)


In writing this essay, you will

  • learn to use the word juxtaposition;
  • learn to note similarities and differences between and among class readings and personal experiences;
  • learn to write descriptively about your observations and opinions;
  • learn to write comparatively about things you see and about differing viewpoints;
  • further develop your ability to quote from and respond to our assigned readings;
  • gain expertise in citing quotations parenthetically according to MLA format and compiling a Works Cited list;
  • express your ideas and style with clear, grammatically correct prose.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *