Detailed Directions: Read J. H. Brunvand’s essay about urban legends titled “The Boyfriend’s Death.” The essay is available through a link (found below on this work page). In this essay, the author states that urban legends are such significant elements of the cultures from which they emerge, that they may sometimes rise to the status of becoming “cultural symbols.” After studying his essay carefully, write a five-page (minimum) essay in response to his article and critique his assertion by analyzing two urban legends which explore Brunvand’s thesis.
Brunvand is specific about his definition of exactly what a “cultural symbol” is. Your analysis will take the form of a documented research essay in which you
a. paraphrase Brunvand’s central assertion,
b. explain, in detail, the significance of Brunvand’s view, and
c. explore, test, and assess Brunvand’s assertion by analyzing two urban legends of your choice., by searching for (via the Internet, print sources, and word of mouth / personal interviews) and analyzing them.
Your essay must answer the following questions:
1. What exactly does Brunvand mean by the term “cultural symbol?
2. Do you support Brunvand’s assertion about urban legends—that some rise to the level of being “cultural symbols”?
–If yes, what particular elements of the cultures from which they emerge are revealed by the urban legends which you examine?
–If no, what particular elements of Brunvand’s definition of the “Cultural symbol” fail to be addressed by the urban legends you analyze?
3. It is possible that you might find some urban legends which do, and others which do not, support Brunvand’s assertion. Was this the case in your research? Explain why this condition does not contradict Brunvand’s claim.
4. Did you fail to find any urban legends which support Brunvand’s claim? If so, address this matter by refuting his assertion, focusing on specific references to your research documents.