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Literary Analysis Essay (Izaguirre)

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Assignment break-down & instructions for tackling this essay from Prof. Izaguirre.

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Literary Analysis Essay (Izaguirre)

  1. 1. Literary Analysis Essay
  2. 2. Literary Analysis Prompt • Purpose: To further develop your skills in college-level research and analysis. • Essay Prompt: • Present a literary analysis of your chosen text using literary critiques and reviews by scholarly sources. You’ll be using your research sources as a “lens” through which to analyze your chosen literary text. You must connect your research to specific moments in the literary text. Be sure to explain to your reader both what your research says and how it impacts your reading of your piece of literature. Be sure to look at setting, diction choices and author’s writing style, theme, plot (see plot diagram on D2L), characters (see archetypes on D2L), symbols, and conflict (man v. man/self/world/nature).
  3. 3. Use the SLRC’s topic development web to explore your chosen literary piece for research ideas. There are two sample literary analysis essays in D2L/Content/Writing Tools. I. The Basics What is your topic? __________________________________________________________________ Start developing a mind map as you explore the background of your topic. This will help you narrow your focus and identify stronger directions for your argument.
  4. 4. Character Archetypes
  5. 5. Setting = time and place your story takes place. This is often quite significant as it relates to what is occurring historically. Author’s writing style and diction choices. What is the tone the author uses? Tone = author’s attitude. Tone/Attitude words describe the author’s or speaker’s attitude toward the subject in a piece of writing. Tone is an important consideration when attempting to evaluate style. If, for instance, an author is being happy or joyful, his word choice (imagery) will reflect the tone.
  6. 6. Theme = author’s message, argument, relevance Symbols = literary device that contains several layers of meaning, often concealed at first sight, and is representative of several other aspects, concepts or traits than those that are visible in the literal translation alone. Symbol is using an object or action that means something more than its literal meaning. Conflict = must be present in a story. Keeps the reader reading. Four types of conflict = man v. man (another person, physical or verbal) man v. nature (outside, ex. snow blizzard, hurricane) man v. self (internal struggle, ex. anger, addiction) man v. world (political, environmental)
  7. 7. “A Worn Path” Welty “Everyday Use” Walker “Hills Like White Elephants” Hemingway (anything Hemingway will work) “To Build a Fire” London “The Things They Carried” (short story version) O’Brien “A Rose for Emily” Faulkner (in Norton Field Guide) “Separating” Updike “Barn Burning” Faulkner (anything) “The Gilded Six-bits” Hurston “Sonny’s Blues” Baldwin “The Rocking Horse Winner” Lawrence “A Good Man is Hard to Find” O’Connor “Everything That Rises Must Converge” O’Connor (in They Say I Say) “The Egg” Anderson “The Jilting of Granny Weatherall” Porter “The Chrysanthemums” Steinbeck “The Man Who was Almost a Man” Wright “The Yellow Wallpaper” Perkins Gilman (in Norton Field Guide) A Doll’s House Ibsen (short feminist play, Norwegian) Trifles Glaspell (one act feminist play)
  8. 8. SLRC Research Guide • https://upresearch.lonesta r.edu/iza-lit/start
  9. 9. Norton Field Guide, pp. 211-222
  10. 10. Organizing
  11. 11. Bubble Cluster/Web of body paragraphs
  12. 12. Outline Structure
  13. 13. Requirements:  Do literary and non-literary research: You will look at literary criticism on your chosen text--for example. Use at least three research sources: At least two of your sources must be scholarly; these can either be scholarly journal articles or excerpts from books written by scholars.  Acceptable popular (non-scholarly) sources include college-level books, reputable websites, and newspapers. Subject-specific encyclopedias, like the Encyclopedia of Social Sciences, are also acceptable, although general encyclopedias are not, no Credo.  Make connections between the texts: Your paper must connect your research sources to your literary text. Don’t just describe what the research says or compare it to your literary text. The essay does not contain personal references to you in any shape or form. You are analyzing the text; therefore, the do nots handout does apply entirely.  Use quotes from your literary text and each research source.  Have a Works Cited page: Your final draft must include a Works Cited page in MLA style. The Works Cited page does not count toward the page length requirement.
  14. 14. Do Nots Do Nots Rules for Writing These rules apply to writing about literature specifically, but may apply to most writing. Please spend time proofreading and editing your essay. When analyzing, always remember to stay formal and analytical. 1. Do not start an essay with “I was . . . “ or any variation of this. 2. Do not start an essay with “There is . . . “ or any variation of this. 3. Do not use YOU or any form of the second person. 4. Do not refer to the reader or the audience (don’t assume I am the reader). 5. Do not use the first person especially by saying “I think . . . “ The essay obviously illustrates how you think. 6. Do not editorialize. Avoid the word “should.” This means to give an unsubstantiated opinion such as “All men behave this way when given the chance.” or “People shouldn’t be so cruel.” 7. Do not use incorrect punctuation on titles of novels or short stores: novels are underlined or italicized, short stories are in “quotations.” (MLA format) 8. Do not say “In this essay I will . . . “ 9. Do not use slang or vulgarity. Elevate your diction. 10. Do not say “This quote means . . .” 11. Do not use apostrophes (‘) incorrectly. They do not make nouns plural. Normally they are used to show possession (Tom’s book) or a contraction (can’t). 12. Do not ever use: you, my, me, I, should, very, a lot, portray, quote
  15. 15. Please do this on your own essay. You must use present tense verbs (unless inside a quote). Ratiocination Star your thesis statement ______ Underline the first sentence of each paragraph (you must have a topic sentence – what the paragraph is about) Check each of your direct quotes (Are they in the correct MLA format? Do the quotes flow into the sentence and/or the paragraph?) Triangle your quoted author’s name and page number (in text citation) S/V Label each subject and verb in your sentence (you are looking for singular subject/singular verb, plural subject/plural verb) The ratiocination should not be a quick, easy process. If you are truly doing this correctly, that is to improve your essay; you must read through the entire essay at least twice. Ideally, you are looking closely at each word, line, sentence, and paragraph. You may now be ready to peer conference
  16. 16. Peer Conference with someone who can give you honest feedback. Peer Conference Exchange your typed, ratiocinated essay, and this conferencing sheet, with your partner. Please be as honest and helpful with your partner, as possible, as you write on their essay and this handout, for their grade depends upon your assistance. 1. Does the student’s essay have at least four coherent, complete paragraphs and the length assigned? 2. Does the student’s introduction include the title of the pieces, the author’s full name, and a developed thesis statement? (Check each of these off in the student’s intro. paragraph). 3. Does the student’s essay have at least the minimum required quotes documented in MLA format (these should be check marked and triangle already, thus easy to find). 4. Does the student’s conclusion restate the ideas discussed in the essay (i.e. doesn’t present new ideas) and sums up their thoughts? 5. Place a ? beside the words/phrases/sentences which do not make sense, are verbose, and/or include incorrect grammar and lack of subject/verb agreement. 6. Place an SP beside any obvious spelling errors. 7. Please discuss each essay; stay on task.
  17. 17. Final Draft/Final Exam 6 full pages (not including the Works Cited page), double- spaced, 12-point Times New Roman font, one-inch margins. Use MLA style for all in-text citations (8-10 quotes) and a Works Cited page. The Works Cited page does not count toward the page requirement. First rough draft ratiocination/peer conference is DUE May 19th. Essay is DUE May 21st, remember turnitin.com prior to class. This essay is now worth 25% and counts as your essay 4 and final exam grade.

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