Collection Description

Collection of student theses and dissertations from as early as 1939, but mainly from 2010 to present.

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"I can see Russia from my house": Tina Fey's impersonation of Sarah Palin as a template for media coverage in the 2008 presidential election
Political humor is a major component of the election system in the United States. Politicians often struggle to escape the quick wits of a satirist or the ironic portrayals of themselves conducted through impersonations. While political comedy is nothing new, the 2008 presidential election ushered in new potential for political humorists with the nomination of Sarah Palin as the Republican vice presidential candidate. Following Palin's nomination, Tina Fey began performing impersonations of Palin regularly on Saturday Night Live. Fey's impersonations of Palin immediately sparked controversy and discussion amongst the media. Major media outlets reported on the impersonation, heavily examined it, used it as a reference point for more serious political discussions, and debated over its effect on audiences; CNN even coined the phrase "Tina Fey Effect" during this time. By integrating Meyer's rhetorical functions of humor, an analysis of the media's reaction to Tina Fey's impersonation of Sarah Palin will reveal the power and impact of this impersonation. In addition, this analysis will develop a more coherent and extensive knowledge regarding impersonations, humor as a rhetorical devise, political comedy, SNL, and the media's interpretation of entertaining political shows.
"I definitely did not report it when I was raped...#WeBelieveChrsitine #MeToo": A content of analysis of disclosures of sexual assault on Twitter
The emergence of the #MeToo movement in 2017 sparked a widespread focus on the societal issue of sexual misconduct. Under the umbrella of sexual misconduct is the neglected issue of sexual assault. This study examines sexual assault disclosures through the context of the #MeToo movement on Twitter. Through the use of content analysis, online disclosures of sexual assault are examined for variations of sexual explicitness and attainment of social functions per the functional theory of self-disclosure. Specifically, this study explores associations between Twitter network structure and 1) levels of sexual explicitness and 2) retweet count. The study seeks to shift the focus of disclosure discourse from interpersonal communication to the contemporary online setting of social media.Implications for theory and practice are discussed. Keywords: sexual assault, Me Too, Twitter, self-disclosure, sexual explicitness, San Diego State University
"I support your endorsement": A classification of presidential campaign endorsements and the exploration of the 2016 Republican "support" versus "endorse" dichotomy
Endorsements play a large role in political campaigns, often signaling to potential voters of a candidate’s political ideologies and policy, and mobilizing voters on election day. This thesis offers a generic description of presidential campaign endorsement as its own unique rhetorical genre. Through the examination of 30 endorsement texts, this thesis outlines seven characteristics comprising this unique genre of speech. Additionally, it examines three of Donald Trump’s endorsements during his 2016 primary race. The endorsement speeches by Governor Sarah Palin, Governor Chris Christie, and Dr. Ben Carson expose generic violations, and offer insight into Donald Trump’s candidacy through their violation of traditional political norms. Through the classification of this unique rhetorical genre, this thesis brings awareness to some Republican Party members’ strategic refusal to utter the word “endorse” yet still “support” the candidate during the 2016 presidential election.
"Ma luoy man me": Reproductive health and family planning in Siquijor, Siquijor, Philippines
In the Philippines, family planning and the promotion of modern contraceptives have been a fundamental component of the country's development initiatives. Although this relationship between reproduction and development has shifted from discourses and policies of population control to reproductive health and rights, neoliberal development goals continue to motivate reproductive policies in the Philippines. Framed in an interrogation of neoliberal development narratives, this thesis explores the everyday meanings of family planning, reproductive health, and "responsible parenthood" in Siquijor, Siquijor, Philippines. In this thesis, I investigate local midwives' perceptions of family planning and "responsible parenthood" in tandem with their own experiences of motherhood and their desires for the future. This is a study about how development and family planning discourses are understood in the everyday. As government workers and members of the local community, midwives are uniquely positioned at the confluence of the state and the communities they serve. While they are privy to the intentions of the state, they, too, must negotiate these discourses and policies within their own lives. In their responses, these midwives shed light on how development and family planning discourse can be reappropriated to serve local and individual needs. While, national reproductive health policy in the Philippines continues to flounder in the context of neoliberal development, the midwives I interviewed provided alternative reproductive health frameworks rooted in their lived experiences.
"Man in the Box": Expressions of masculinity and mental health in the 1990's grunge music
The grunge music genre broke into mainstream radio in 1991 with the release of Nirvana’s single “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and their album, Nevermind. The movement’s unprecedented popularity exposed a community of young musicians in Seattle, Washington whose music became cast as the “voice” of Generation X’s frustrations. Grunge lyrics centered on feelings of angry, angst, and apathy, displaying a unique level of transparency and authenticity in discussing struggles with mental health and addiction. This comparative study analyzes the lyrics of multiple bands to argue that grunge developed a plural musical and urban identity informed by Seattle’s underground youth culture. Furthermore, male artists utilized a contradictive rhetorical style of apathy and aggression to engage in politics concerning trauma and sexual violence, and used postmodern lyrical construction to articulate mental health issues. Ultimately, grunge artists convey authentic representations of physical and emotional pain, presenting an alternative to the narrative of progressive, linear healing. This research takes an interdisciplinary approach in analyzing the grunge counterculture scene, arguing that fluidity of lyrics, musicality, and persona allowed for a new version of masculinity that challenged traditional gender roles and emphasized transparency of mental health. Grunge lyrics are characterized by a postmodern construction that include word manipulation and contradiction, word repetition, and narratives focused on internal struggle. Artists used abject imagery to describe the corporeal effects of addiction and depression in an effort to create authentic representations. This essay uses feminist theory, poststructuralism, and affect theory to analyze memoirs, interviews, music videos, and lyrics., San Diego State University
"Middle" Cretaceous metasedimentary rocks of La Olvidada northeastern Baja California, Mexico
Plate 1. Geologic map of the metasedimentary rocks of La Olvidada and vicinity. Plate 2.Columnar section of the metasedimentary rocks of La Olvidada., Recent field mapping near La Olvidada barite prospect, at the 30th parallel in northeastern Baja California, has delimited a 125 square km exposure of medial Cretaceous (Barremanian-Turonian), pre-batholithic, upper greenschist to lower amphibolite metasedimentary rocks. These rocks, collectively referred to as the metasedimentary rocks of La Olvidada, are exposed in a seven km thick section characterized by northwest-striking bedding and foliation, steep northeasterly dips, and isoclinal folding. This section consists of an unconformable basal sequence of quartz-rich metaconglomerate, metaquartzite, phyllite, and marble overlain by rhythmically interbedded and laminated flysch-like carbonaceous metachert and quartz-mica phyllite. The basal sequence is interpreted to have been conglomerate, sandstone, and limestone deposited on a subsiding continental shelf, whereas the flysch-like rocks are interpreted as pelagic bedded chert and turbidite sandstone deposited predominantly in the basin plain facies. A lens of metaconglomerate, metaquartzite, and minor metaandesite enveloped by flysch-like rocks is also exposed in the section. These rocks are interpreted as conglomerate and calcareous sandstone deposited in a channelized facies of a submarine fan or flank talus deposited adjacent to a basin floor high. Andesite was probably erupted from local submarine vents. Clastic provenance and paleocurrent evidence imply that a cratonal source terrane was situated southwest of the depositional basin. The metasedimentary rocks of La Olvidada crop out continentward of Aptian-Albian age metavolcanic rocks (Alisitos Formation) which have been interpreted as a fossil volcanic arc. This tectonic geometry suggests that the rocks of La Olvidada were deposited in a back-arc setting. An alternate hypothesis explains the present position of the arc by Late Cretaceous northwest translation, which dislocated a segment of a western mainland Mexico arc (Sonoran) and placed it seaward of the rocks of La Olvidada., San Diego State University
"My most authentic self": Creating visibility and understanding of pansexuality through stories of identity formation
The purpose of this study is to increase visibility and understanding of individuals who adopt "pansexual" as their sexual identity label. Pansexual is defined as potential sexual attraction to individuals of all genders, and, despite the increased usage of the label over the past twenty-five years, there is still little research on individuals who identify this way. This study provides a comprehensive literature review of existing research to contextualize this topic, then utilizes analytic autoethnography and qualitative interviews to determine why some individuals choose the label pansexual over others, what role gender identity plays in this process, and how these individuals feel about similar labels, such as bisexual and queer. The interviews conducted with the ten individuals who participated in this study suggest that these particular pansexuals, who primarily learned about the label pansexual from their friends and community members, adopted the label because they felt it was a more authentic description of how they understood their identity, that it allowed them to communicate this identity better to others, and that it was more inclusive of trans and gender non-conforming individuals. Additionally, most of the participants felt that their gender identity or that of their partner played a large role in their process of pansexual identity formation. Finally, many participants noted the ways in which the label queer is used to build community connections, and some discussed the ways in which the definition of bisexual is beginning to shift. Overall, the results present a number of avenues for future research on pansexuality and other non-binary sexual identities.
"Never Give Up"
The short film, "Never Give Up," features a talented musician, Wen, a Chinese girl who loses her hearing as she is well on her way to a successful career as a violinist. Wen is devastated, but when nobody believes that she can continue playing, a young violin player gives her hope. The thesis will examine the problems of deaf identity and artistic representations of the deaf community, as well as the role of music in the deaf community. The audience will see how the main protagonist overcomes all the difficulties to go after her dream, even as the audience also hears Johann Pachelbel's Canon in D performed on the violin. Finally, the thesis examines the themes of hope, moral fortitude, and perseverance in the context of art and personal adversity. The thesis will discuss the way similar themes have been treated in related literature and cinema, and will specifically consider how these themes have been treated from a craft perspective both in Hollywood and foreign cinema.