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Literary Analysis Essay: Your assignment – and an in depth explanation of how to write it.

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Presentation on theme: "Literary Analysis Essay: Your assignment – and an in depth explanation of how to write it."— Presentation transcript:

1 Literary Analysis Essay: Your assignment – and an in depth explanation of how to write it.

2 Your Assignment: Due Monday, December 7 0 Write a one page essay analyzing one piece of literature that we either read in class or that you previously read on your own that is considered to be Gothic. Identify two Gothic elements that have a strong presence in the story, drama, or poem, and analyze how those elements enhance the mood of the story, proving it fits into the Gothic genre. You must use direct evidence from the text (a quote) to prove any assertions you make, as well as explain your reasoning.

3 So how do I write this thing? First, let’s break down what it means: 0 Literary: a formal written work of great quality 0 Analysis: to take something apart, examine, then explain how and/or why it works 0 You are analyzing the impact a literary device has on literature, how the author brings out the theme of a work, etc. 0 The take away: Do not write a plot summary! There’s no place for a summary in this type of essay!

4 How should the essay be organized? 0 Write a hook if you’d like 0 Thesis statement 0 1 st body paragraph identifying and analyzing the impact of ONE Gothic element – be sure to include text evidence and explain your reasoning. 0 2 nd body paragraph identifying and analyzing the impact of A SECOND Gothic element – be sure to include text evidence and explaining your reasoning. 0 Conclusion

5 Thesis Statements 0 Remember back to our color coded thesis statements for expository essays… 0 There are specific components you MUST include in a thesis statement. 0 Direct answer to the prompt – or if the essay is self directed, a clear statement explaining the subject of the essay. 0 A claim, or opinion 0 A sub-point listed for each body paragraph you intend to write.

6 Thesis Statements Cont. 0 When you write a literary analysis essay, there are three more things you have to add in your thesis. These are: 0 The title of the work you are analyzing 0 The author of the work you are analyzing 0 The genre of the work you are analyzing 0 (Drama, short story, poem, novel, etc.) 0 An easy acronym to help you remember these must-haves is TAG

7 Example Thesis Statement: Edgar Allan Poe’s short story, A Tell-Tale Heart, is the very definition of Gothic literature. The intense emotions of the narrator and the supernatural-seeming quality of his victim’s fake blue eye solidifies the short story’s place in the pantheon of Gothic literature. Author Genre Title Direct answer to prompt Sub-point 1 Subpoint 2 Claim

8 Thesis Statements Cont. 0 You can put these must-have pieces of the thesis statement together any way you want to, as long as they’re all present and the sub-points appear in the same order they are written about in the body paragraphs of your paper. 0 Because you have more to include in your thesis, it’s OK to extend your thesis statement to two or three sentences if needed. Too much information crammed into one sentence can come across muddled and confusing to a reader.

9 Body Paragraphs 0 Of course, each paragraph should have a topic sentence that clearly states the main idea of the paragraph. 0 In literary analysis essays, it is crucial that you include text evidence as a warrant to back up and prove any argument you attempt to make in your essay. 0 After the text evidence, you must further explain you line of reasoning. 0 Each and every paragraph, with the single exception of the introduction should begin with a transitional phrase.

10 Groan! If you’re thinking, “This sounds familiar…” you’re right… …It’s basically an OER. (Well, really, OERs are basically mini-literary analyses.)

11 In defense of OERs: Groan if you like, but OERs are good practice for advanced academic writing, which will always require 1. forming an original argument (planting seeds), 2. providing sources (the root) of your opinion, and 3. following your line of reasoning all the way through to its logical end point (blooming branches reaching for the sun). By the way… those blooming branches? That’s inferencing – making an educated guess based upon limited information. When you extend your explanation to that depth, you get a 3 on the EOC. Every. Time.

12 In defense of OERs: 0 There is no better way to prepare for the so-called “real world”. There are few skills as powerful as persuasion and as liberating as logic. 0 You are reading and understanding some other person’s ideas or information they’ve provided. 0 You are critically assessing them; seeking value and truth, prepared to discard the mundane and the erroneous. 0 Once you have the truth, and you have assessed it and analyzed it, your work is to carefully and deftly carve out the perfect piece of proof! The evidence that shows, without a shadow of a doubt, your theory is sound. 0 No one can argue your perceptions, ideas, or beliefs are ill-thought or off- base once you’ve logically proven the truth and value of your idea.

13 In defense of OERs: 0 This will make you aware of your own thought process, which will in turn increase your learning abilities. 0 Critical evaluation of ideas and information is a skill you should be using every day of your life. There will always be someone on the prowl for the weak, looking to take advantage of the ignorant and uneducated. Don’t be that guy. 0 The ability to find applicable proof to back your arguments and explain your reasoning in depth greatly ups the odds that you will get what you want in life more often than not.

14 Conclusion 0 Don’t forget to wrap your paper up with a conclusion (should be a summary of the essay, and really drive your argument home.)

15 Wait – what am I writing about? You’re writing a one-page essay centered on what two elements in [your choice of lit] prove that the story fits into the Gothic genre, and explain how those elements impact the reader. Choose one of these to prove as Gothic: 0 The Most Dangerous Game 0 Sorry, Right Number 0 Cask of Amontillado 0 The Hitchhiker 0 Or any book you have read that you believe falls in the Gothic genre of literature. Which two of these Gothic elements have the strongest presence in the story? 0 creepy setting 0 mystery and suspense 0 ghostly legend, unexplainable occurrence, or death 0 omens, foreshadowing 0 extreme emotions: anger, love, insanity 0 supernatural events: ghosts, etc. 0 damsels in distress 0 romantic or obsessive love, one of the lovers dies

16 Before you write, a quick reminder about class policy: Papers that are not separated into indented paragraphs, do not have appropriate capitalization and punctuation, and/or clearly show little to no effort, will not be accepted for a grade. Do it right or don’t do it at all, folks.

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