ELIT 48C Kim Palmore 1
Essay 1: A Response to Literature of the Modernist period.
To Lean to Write a Clear and Cohesive Response to Literature
To Learn Rhetorical Strategies: Analysis, Synthesis, Argument, Cause and Effect, Compare and Contrast
To Learn Critical Thinking Skills
To Learn MLA Documentation Style: Integrating quotations; Works Cited
In this second half of our quarter, we have read and discussed multiple texts, theories, and opinions on
both literature and literary analysis, and for this reason, I offer you several choices for your first essay. In
a thesis driven essay of 500 to 750 words, respond to one of the following prompts. You need only the
primary text for this essay, but you may incorporate other stories, manifestos, or critical theory as
additional support. Remember, you can also draw on your own experiences and knowledge to discuss,
explain, and analyze your topic.
Topic: Choose One
Destruction, survival, isolation, and death are prominent themes in The Road. Choose one and explain how the
theme is essential to or drives the story.
Using a close reading strategy and specific textual evidence argue for how the world was most likely devastated.
Consider climate change, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, the explosion of nuclear bombs, or?
Consider the idea of “hope.” How is hope expressed in the novel? Argue that having hope is or is not essential to the
Use a theoretical lens to interpret one aspect of the novel.
Discuss the novel in terms of its postmodern construction. Consider the postmodern manifestos or the Mary Klages
article on Postmodernism to ground your argument.
Analyze the father's psychological state and how it pertains to the story. How does his mental state affect the
decisions that he makes?
Examine the concept of trust and mistrust in the The Road.
The setting in The Road is vital to the whole tone of the story. Analyze the use of setting in The Road.
Explore the use of foreshadowing in the novel and analyze how it affects the story. How has this technique affected
the plot of the story? Cite examples from the text to support your argument.
ELIT 48C Kim Palmore 2
Examine the use of description in The Road. Discuss how the author uses narration, dialogue, and imagery to bring
his novel to life, citing examples from the text.
Analyze the symbol of innocence and how it pertains to the son in The Road.
Analyze the symbol "the fire." What is the significance of the fire to the man and the boy?
Overall, does The Road put forth a positive and uplifting view of humanity, or one of darkness and pessimism?
How do the protagonists distinguish the "good guys" from the "bad guys"? Are the protagonists indeed the "good
Examine both the concept and reality of cannibalism in The Road. Consider motivations and outcomes of the
Note: You are free to pursue another writing topic. Please, discuss it with me before you begin so we can
make sure that it is viable.
Submission Requirements: Please submit an electronic copy to firstname.lastname@example.org
Format Requirement: MLA-style formatting and citations
Length: Your finished text should be between 500-750 words, excluding the Works Cited page.
Research Requirements: none
Works Cited Page
A Works Cited page names all of the sources that were used in an essay or research paper; it credits the
source or sources for the information you present, evaluate, analyze, and synthesize to support your
thesis. A Works Cited page also serves as a reference to the sources that were used so that a reader or
writer can quickly refer to the original text. The Works Cited page for this research project will include at
least one primary text. If you use other sources, including other primary or secondary sources from class,
please list those too.
Expected Student Learning Outcomes
§ Demonstrate outlining and brainstorming abilities
§ Demonstrate an awareness of the time needed to plan, search, and write an essay
§ Demonstrate increased awareness of strategies for organizing ideas and structuring essays
§ Demonstrate an ability to use complex sentence structures
§ Demonstrate an understanding of multiple rhetorical strategies
§ Demonstrate active reading strategies by finding textual evidence
§ Learn to integrate quotations effectively and correctly
ELIT 48C Kim Palmore 3
Previously Learned Skills Required to Complete this Assignment
ü The ability to summarize sources
ü The ability to use multiple rhetorical strategies: Narration, Description, Exemplification
ü An awareness of plagiarism issues
ü The ability to write grammatically correct, clear sentences.
ü The ability to write a clear and concise thesis.
ü The ability to brainstorm material for an essay.
ü The ability to organize an essay
Ø As you (re)read the primary text, keep in mind the prompts and highlight specific passages, lines,
or scenes that may support your argument.
Ø Write a thesis that helps readers understand both your argument and your reasoning.
Ø Include textual examples that illustrate your points.
Ø Avoid telling the reader that something is “interesting,” or “exciting”; instead create images or
use examples that show it.
Ø Come to my office if you are unsure, confused, or behind.
Traps to Avoid:
Ø Choosing a topic that you do not understand or one not on the list that you have not discussed
Ø Failing to assert a clear and strong argument.
Ø Seeking to present the subject from memory or hearsay.
Ø Failing to support the argument with evidence from appropriate sources.
Ø Citing Wikipedia (or other non-academic or unreliable sources) as a source for your paper.