1999 Honors Theses

Gabriel Allen Ipolani Alisna, History and East Asian Studies

"In Pursuit of Perfection: The Economic Dynamic of Japan As Seen Through the Eyes of Contemporary Confucianism After World War II."

Advisor: Richard Bohr

Tracing the development of Confucianism in China to contemporary Confucianism in Modern Japan helps us understand her miraculous economy after the ruin of World War II. Deconstructing this socio-cultural phenomenon allows one to weigh the value of Confucianism -- a system of ethics for the individual and the state -- in our modern day times -- especially East Asia.

Frank Peter Bendewald, Classics

"Inner Darkness: Images of the unconscious in Virgil's Aeneid"

Advisor: Ray Larson

Dark, dire images pervade the Aeneid, and the epic poem's final lines are decidedly unsettling. Through his images and symbols, Virgil depicts a conflict within Aeneas, and he seems to deliberately resolve it in a way that leaves his reader disquieted. Aeneas' conflict, like Achilles' inner struggle in the Iliad, is as a semi-divine hero, born of a goddess and a mortal man, torn between his mortal and divine sides, and it can been seen as the human conflict between body and spirit. In resolving this heroic, and indeed human, conflict, Virgil shows his hero darkly acquiescing to his divine side in the Aeneid's abrupt ending, whereas Homer chose to depict Achilles reconciling his divine and mortal nature, albeit with a sense of melancholy, in the closing books of the Iliad.

Heather Ann Butkowski, History

"Gendered Ideas in Women's Publications: West German Women, 1945-1950"

Advisor: Greg Schroeder

The postwar period in West Germany offered women a unique opportunity to extend their traditionally limited sphere. German women accepted new roles as providers in the home and laborers in the work force in the crisis period that followed after the zero hour. These new roles have peaked gender historians interest. Historians' descriptions of postwar German women lead one to assume women's new roles would make them feminists, as women would realize the significance of their postwar contribution. However, German women continued to cling to traditional roles and ideas that had existed since the turn of the century. This work examines a variety of postwar women's publications to hear women's traditional and feminist arguments and discern their expectations for life in the new Germany. Ultimately, the interplay of West Germany's historical experiences and West German women's expectations for social, economic, and political acceptance, reflected in their writings, illustrates their conservative expectations for equality after World War II.

Chad Alan Clasemann, Theater and Music

"The Merging of Two Fine Arts: Sound Design for Anton Chekhov's Play The Seagull"

Advisor: Dr. Greg Walker

For the CSB/SJU Theater Department 1998 Fall production of Anton Chekhov's The Seagull, I was the sound designer. This included at its heart 7 original songs written specifically for this play. I also operated the sound board for the run of the show. After the production, I wrote a reflection paper which analyzes the process of my work as well as the songs in detail. Also included is a CD containing all of the original music.

Katherine Ann Garvey, Nutrition

"The Development of ELISA Methods for the Measurement of Oxidized LDLs and Autoantibodies Against Oxidized LDLs in Human Serum"

Advisor: Amy Olson

A significant risk factor for the development of heart disease appears to be oxidized low-density lipoproteins (oxLDLs). Currently there are no methods which specifically measure oxidized LDLs in serum. ELISA methods were developed which specifically detect oxLDLs and autoantibodies against oxLDLs in human serum. These sensitive assays can detect oxLDLs in concentrations as small as 50 ng/mL serum. Optimal assay conditions such as serum and antibody dilutions, as well as blocking agents and washing buffers were determined. The assays have successfully detected greater amounts of oxLDLs and autoantibodies in more concentrated serum dilutions. Ultimately these assays may be used to quantify levels of oxidatively modified LDLs in patient serum. If oxLDLs could be correlated with other risk factors, it may be possible to more accurately predict a patient's risk for developing heart disease.

Jacob W Hausauer, Biology

"Heat Acclimation to heat stress in the House Finch"

Advisor: Marcus Webster

Lisa Marie Hood, Biology

"The Use of the DNA Comet Assay to Detect Genetic Damage in Rana Pipiens Taken from Affected Versus Non-Affected Sites"

Advisor: Dr. Jeanne Marie Lust

Deformed frogs have been appearing frequently in Minnesota and throughout the United States. One hypothesis for the cause of deformities is genetic damage as a result of pesticides. This project will use the DNA Comet Assay to determine the extent of genetic damage in affected sites (sites with a greater number of deformities) versus non-affected sites (sites with fewer deformities). The DNA Comet Assay involves electrophoresis of cells in which the membranes have been solubilized and the DNA uncoiled. Electrophoresis spreads the genetic material. The length of the spread indicates the amount of genetic damage in the form of single and double strand breaks. The results indicate a difference in frogs collected from affected sites and non-affected sites.

Karen M. Jakubowsky, Computer Science

"Metaphor and Understanding: The Work of Lakoff and Johnson and Natural Language Processing"

Advisor: Noreen Herzfeld

Do you remember your first lesson in metaphor? Most likely, you learned that it is a comparison of one thing to another, to give a more descriptive account of something. "He was an iceberg" or "time is money" are obvious metaphors. They are regarded as simply vivid expressions to explain our ideas. However, George Lakoff, professor of linguistics at the University of California, Berkeley, and Mark Johnson, professor of philosophy at the University of Oregon, assert that metaphors are much more than literary devices. In their 1980 book, Metaphors We Live By, they claim that the way we think, act, and understand our world is rooted in metaphor. Their theory represents shift in the focus on metaphor, taking it from merely poetic substitution to a bold statement regarding human understanding. The theory, then, provides an important application to one of artificial intelligence's main facets: natural language processing. It provides a theory that encompasses broad understanding and context, and it can be computationally modeled, both important aspects to natural language processing. At the same time, a growing field fosters numerous opinions, and there are many fundamental issues about metaphor that remain unresolved. This thesis investigates these two very different sides to the partnership of metaphor and artificial intelligence.

Lisa Marie Jungbauer, Chemistry

"An Endophytic Fungus as a Source of New Antifungal Compounds"

Advisor: Dr. Kate Graham

Medical advances in society such as organ transplants, prolonged chemotherapy, and those that lengthen the lives of AIDS patients and the elderly increase the number of immunocompromised individuals(1). When the immune system is compromised, opportunistic fungi can flourish and become fatal. Current antifungal treatments are limited and often toxic(2,3). In addition, strains of fungi resistant to available antifungals are emerging(4,5).   Fungi were selected as the source of potential new antifungal agents because fungal antagonism has been reported in most fungal ecosystems(6). Endophytic fungi, which inhabit the spaces between plant cells, are known producers of natural products and that assist plants in fending off plant fungal pathogens(7). Therefore, endophytic fungi should produce compounds with antifungal activity. The endophytic fungus, KG146A, a basidiomycete found in the wild rosemary tree/shrub Ceratiola ericoides, demonstrated antifungal activity in plug assays against Candida, a human pathogen. KG146A was cultured in liquid Sabouraud's Dextrose broth and extracted with ethyl acetate. The organic extracts (~5mg/ diffusion disk) revealed antifungal activity in disc diffusion assays against Candida albicans 406, Candida albicans wisconsin, Candida albicans MEN, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Purification of the active component involving LH-20 gel chromatography followed by reverse-phase HPLC was developed. Final purification will be completed through the use of HPLC and structure elucidation will be achieved through NMR spectroscopy, IR spectroscopy, and mass spectrometry.

Brendan Conor Kelly, Political Science and Peace Studies

"Working for A Living: A Comparison of the Public Assistance and Employment and Training Programs of Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States."

Advisor: Gary Prevost

In industrial democracies, creating conditions of social justice depends on just welfare state institutions. This paper compares how three models of the democratic welfare state, in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Sweden, attempt meet the demands of justice through public assistance and employment and training programs that provide for a well-trained labor force. The paper compares each state's public assistance and employment and training programs, the historical and political developments of each system, and each program's successes and failures. It examines the present situations in each country and the likelihood of future changes. Understanding the political constraints of each country, recommendations, based on the examples of the other structures, are put forward for each state.

Ann Marie Knapp, Psychology

"Effects of Psychological and Physiological Stressors on Interleukin-1ß Levels and Behavioral Measures in Mice"

Advisor: Colleen Schaffner

The effects of stress on immune system functioning is an important area of current and upcoming research. In order to determine the importance of stressor type on immune dysfunction, the effects of psychological and physiological stress on immune systems in mice were monitored through both molecular and behavioral means. Groups of mice were systematically exposed to non-contact exposure to a rat in order to induce psychological stress, and forced periods of swimming to induce physiological stress. The stress exposure was applied every other day for 30 days to create a chronic stress situation. Stress levels imposed by the stressors were monitored previous and post the stress exposure via serum interleukin-1ß concentrations and instantaneous focal samplings of behavioral changes. No conclusive evidence was found to either directly support or reject the hypothesis of intensity not stressor type mediation. However, experimental trends suggested the presence of social contact as a shield to immune dysfunction, and possible benefits of adaptation to physiological stress. Further research is needed to gather empirical evidence to support these findings.

Rebecca Lee Matlock, Psychology

"Intergenerational Effects of Conflict in Intimate Relationships"

Advisor: Richard Wielkiewicz

Title: Intergenerational Effects of Conflict in Intimate Relationships

A survey was used to assess the effects of parental marital status and conflict on the intimate dating relationships of 154 undergraduate volunteers from two private Catholic institutions. Seventy-three percent of the participants were female, 13% were from divorced families, and most participants ranged from 19 to 24 years of age. The effects of parental divorce and conflict were found to be both beneficial and harmful to the adjustment of offspring and development of intimate relationships. Parental divorce, conflict, and low levels of family functioning were associated with increased involvement in steady dating relationships and more self-reported happiness within current intimate relationships. In contrast, parental conflict and low quality of family functioning were related to students' threatening to break up with their partner. High quality of family functioning was linked to a secure attachment style in offspring, while low family functioning was related to an avoidant attachment style. High levels of student identity correlated with high dyadic adjustment and idealism, whereas low quality of family functioning was related to higher fear of intimacy. Based on these inconsistent results, it is possible that individuals from divorced and conflictual families have biased perceptions of the quality of their dating relationships due to their experience of the troubled parental relationship, and that they subsequently choose to avoid the mistakes of their parents by avoiding or minimizing conflict within their personal intimate relationships. However negative perceptions of quality of family functioning should not be discounted, as they appear to have detrimental effects on some areas of offspring adjustment. Perhaps students' distorted perceptions combined with parental ability to distance their children from divorce-related conflict and model effective problem solving account for this pattern of results.

Carl Simon Meyer, Classics

"Themistokles as Herodotus Osysseus: The Trickster Hero in the History"

Herodotus, known as the "Father of History," was one of the first composers in the genre of history. As a composer of a new literary style, Herodotus had to look to other genres to find techniques and conventions of style to adopt for his undertaking. A major influence on all Greek literature was the epics of Homer. It was from the Iliad and the Odyssey that Herodotus drew character types to aid in the recounting of the great deeds done in his History. Odysseys was a Greek hero of the Trojan War that filled the role of the trickster. Herodotus presented Themistokles, the trickster-hero who turned the tide of the persian invasion in the History, in such a way as to remind his readers of Odysseus. This portrayal of Themistokles in an Odyssean manner helped to relate the character of themistokles in a role that Greek audiences would immediately recognize and understand.

Advisor: Margaret Cook

Maggie Mae Miller, English

"From Poems to Poets: The Life and Work of Eavan Boland"

Advisor: S. Nancy Hynes

In my thesis I take a complete, critical look at Eavan Boland's life from early on as a young Irish girl exiled from her country and living in England, through her struggle to become a poet in an overwhelmingly male-dominated profession, to a close look and analysis of her work and life today. I trace the way in which Boland has struggled to integrate her life as a woman and a poet in Ireland. In the Irish tradition handed down to Boland, if women were not present as voices behind the poems as authors, then what was their role within the poems as images? Why were the images passed down to her through this tradition unacceptable to Boland? How has she worked to change the image of women in Irish literature? Boland has done much to change the face of Irish literature in her work thus far, and she is not done yet; she has created a place for real women to both exist and write in her country's literature.

Heath Garrick Pochucha, English and Communications


Advisor: Chris Freeman

.alabastard. is a feature length film that I wrote, directed, produced, and co-edited. The film weaves through the lives of many distinct and often abstract characters. None of these characters, however, interact; rather, they remain their own separate entities and function to demonstrate the isolation and deindividualization that permeates much of the film's mood. The main character, a boy named Jane, pulls the viewer into the film through his nonchalance in discussing childhood abuse and neglect at the hands of his mother. He remains vulnerable and innocent while simultaneously demonstrating a unique personality and intelligence through his simple, yet wrenching, dialogue. Another technique used in the film is the montage. In the film montage serves and creates rhythm, dynamics, narrative flow, surrealism, and in many ways is the key to the door that unlocks meaning for the film as a whole. .alabastard. stands as a largely allegorical piece, and its meaning, therefore, resides in each individual viewer. It is his or her challenge to place him or herself into the film, to become a part of the madness.

Sara Ann Rademacher, Psychology

"A Post-Hoc Analysis of the Clinton-Lewinsky Scandal: Application of Psychological Theories of Attitude to Elucidate the Responses of the Public, Media, and Political Parties"

Advisor: Anthony Sorem

Various social psychological theories of attitude, persuasion and cognition are applied to provide post hoc explanations of the attitudes held by various participants such as the media, the public, and both political parties towards Clinton's alleged inappropriate/ illegal actions with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Specifically, the opinions of each group are monitored and analyzed according to Leon Festinger's theory of cognitive dissonance, the Elaboration-Likelihood Model, William Perry's theory of cognitive development, Don Byrne's theory of attitude and attraction, and Irving Janis's theory of the effects of fear arousal on attitude change.

Amanda Lynn Rahe, Biology

"Enhanced DNA Repair of Serratia Marcescens, S. Typhimurium, and Saccharomyces Cerevisiae by Evening Primrose (Oenothera SPP.) Oil"

Advisor: Ellen Jensen

Evening Primrose oil (EPO) is a suspected anticarcinogen, however, little is known about its method of stopping and/or slowing tumor growth. The present research used S. marcescens, S. typhimurium, Escherichia coli, Staphlyococcus aureus, and S. cerevisiae as cellular models to investigate the antimutagenic properties of EPO. Ultraviolet radiation was used as a mutagen. Each organism was screened for mutations at various lengths of UV light exposure and plated on appropriate media. One period of UV exposure that represented 10% population kill was chosen for each organism, and the organism was once again exposed to UV light for this time interval, but plated on media enhanced with EPO. S. marcescens colonies were also plated on Tryptic Soy Agar enhanced with vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin E. When S. marcescens, S. tyhphimurium, and S. cerevisiae were plated on media withEPO, the colonies grew in a consistent lawn after UV exposure, with little or no detectable mutation rate. No significant difference in survival was found when S. marcescens colonies were plated on media enhanced with vitamins. An Ames strain of S. typhimurium his- with a non-functioning uvrB gene did not grow on minimal media + EPO after exposed to UV light. Rad gene mutants of S. cerevisiae grew in a lawn on Yeast Mold Agar + EPO. It does not appear that EPO is dependent upon an intact UV repair system in preventing mutation, but perhaps enhances proofreading or mismatch repair of DNA.

Shirley S. Richardson, English

"From Novel to Film: The Remains of the Day and the Art of Adaptation"

Advisor: Chris Freeman

Both novelist and film-maker have stories to tell and both create a vision of their stories for their readers and viewers, one with words on a page, the other with pictures and spoken dialogue. A novel's descriptive passages may be very detailed or leave the reader with large visual gaps, whereas each frame of the film fills the viewer's vision with scrupulously attended images, from the props to the setting to the costumes to every gesture and expression of the actor. A novel allows the reader to pause, ponder, reread, and detect subtleties; a film takes the viewer by the hand at its own pace. But film, not being limited to the medium of language, also has the privilege of working with the media of vision, sound, lighting, set, and spatiality. The relationship between Kazuo Ishiguro's fine first-person narrative and the artistic Merchant Ivory film adaptation is especially fascinating to explore.

Brendan Patrick Riley, English


Advisor: Wendy Sterba

Terry Gilliam's films Brazil and 12 Monkeys are intricate dystopias with bizarre and eye-catching imagery. Using the theories of Michel Foucault and Jean Baudrillard, this thesis divides dystopian narrative into two distinct categories: Power and Technological. Once the boundaries for the categories are established, it becomes evident that Gilliam's masterpieces fit the specifications for both. In creating comprehensive dystopias that address both types of dystopia, Gilliam has opened up spaces for resistence to Baudrillard's hyperreality and even defies the irreversibility that Baudrillard claims is inevitable.

Luke Anthony Schwankl, French

" The Poetic Vision of Arthur Rimbaud as a Creative Force"

Advisor: Ned Dubin

John J. Steingraeber, English

"Labor of Love: A Memoir"

Advisor: Ozzie Mayers

My thesis was a combination of creative writing and research; I wrote a seventy-page memoir about the last sixteen months of my maternal grandmother's life and framed it between a prologue and epilogue which explore the theoretical underpinnings of memoir as a genre in addition to issues of canonicity and postmodernism in relation to the memoir. The body of the memoir explores the sixteen month period during my sophomore and junior years of high school where my grandmother lived at our house; we chose to care for her in our home rather than putting her in a managed care facility. Issues explored in the work are life, death, aging, memory, families, and responsibility.

Christopher J. Thompson, Natural Science

"Comparisons of Plant Species Richness, Relative Abundance, and Diversity in Two Prairie Restorations and Two Remnant Prairie Preserves in Stearns County, Minnesota"

Advisor: Gordon Brown

Prairies once covered vast areas of the Midwestern United States. In Minnesota, less than one percent of the stateís original eighteen million acres of prairie remains. Restoration of prairie vegetation has become a popular means of augmenting preservation efforts and increasing the area of this rare native habitat. In this study I used species-area and rank abundance relationships to compare the species richness and diversity of restored prairies at St. Johnís University and Sand Prairie to remnant prairie preserves at Roscoe and Sand Prairie (all in Stearns County, Minnesota). I visually estimated relative abundance at each site using randomly placed 0.25m2 quadrats within representative areas of a uniform vegetation type. I derived species-area relationships using a series of enclosing quadrats that increased in size. Roscoe prairie had higher species richness and greater diversity than any other remnant or restoration project; however, the slopes of the species-area relationship of the Roscoe and Sand Prairie remnants were similar. The Sand Prairie remnant had greater species richness than did the Sand Prairie and St. Johnís restoration projects at small (1 ñ 10 m2) scales, but the slopes of the species-area relationship for the two restoration projects were significantly greater than those of the remnants. The two restored prairies exhibited similar patterns of diversity and richness across most prairie types. These results suggest differences in the species-area relationships between remnant and restored prairies, and that simple inventories often used to track the success of restorations may be augmented by the inclusion of species-area relationships.

Tara Lynn Tollefson, Sociology

"Living With The Tension: American Benedictine Women in Roman Catholic Church Structures"

Advisor: Sheila Nelson

This paper explores the tension felt by women religious in a Midwestern Benedictine community concerning the Roman Catholic church hierarchy's unequal treatment of women. The Second Vatican Council, the renewal process, and the rise of modern feminism in America have all contributed to the sisters' awareness of the Church's discriminatory practices. While the hierarchy contends that women have a different yet equal role and dignity within the church, my data and the literature indicate that women religious experience this "different" role as oppressive. As educated women in a Church structure, this paper answers the questions of the 30 sisters interviewed: Do they experience this tension in their daily lives? How do they cope? How do these coping patterns function within the Roman Catholic Church structures?

Eric Richard Zenk, Physics and Mathematics

"Concerning the Electromagnetic Field of a Laser Beam"

Advisor: Dean Langley

This paper reviews physical theory relating to the electromagnetic field of a laser. It is divided into three sections (not including the introduction and conclusion). The first contains exposition of beam-like solutions to the wave equation, ignoring physical conditions imposed by a laser resonator. The second section traces diffraction theory, which may be used to find wave-equation solutions consistent with a particular cavity. The third contains a limited discussion of the interaction between laser light and the lasing medium. The paper, as a whole, may be useful to someone interested in modeling the electromagnetic field of a laser. In particular, the references are extensive so it may be used as a starting point for further work.