- Check the syllabus for grading criteria
- Check provided sample essay for guidelines
This assignment should take the form of a Literature Essay that comprises 1000-1250 words. The essay should explore the themes of one of our major Drama readings (Antigone, Fences, or A Raisin in the Sun).
Much like the Close Reading assignments(check below for reference), this essay should make shorter passages from your selected text the focal point. Explore how those passages speak to or help illuminate thematic concerns, which may include themes of belonging, alienation, virtue, justice, honour, individuality, redemption, or memory, among others. This central concern is not intended to limit your analysis but to open it up to a conversation that reaches beyond the scope of the first two Close Reading essays. The goal here is to articulate a credible argument on a given topic by discussing how the text of your choice explores and dramatizes the themes discussed in this course.
To help assist in your approach to discussing one of the Drama texts, I have included a straightforward prompt for what the final essay might look like:
Writing on one of the major Drama texts in this course (Antigone, Fences, or A Raisin in the Sun), discuss one theme in that specific reading (this may include themes of belonging, alienation, virtue, justice, honour, individuality, redemption, or memory) and consider the ways in which the narrative enriches, complicates, or potentially limits the forcefulness of that theme. Make sure to substantively analyze at least two passages in this analytical essay.
In short: pick one text, pick one theme, determine at least two passages, and write a formal essay analyzing the chosen passages. The paper must be minimum 1000 words and maximum 1250 words (be sure to include a word count at the end of the essay).
Please submit the essay on Canvas in double-spaced Times New Roman 12-point font with 1-inch margins. Please see the Sample Essay in the Resources module for MLA formatting reference.
*Close Reading Essay
A Close Reading Essay is when you pick a short passage from a larger text and analyze it in detail, with an eye toward syntax, language, and the structure of the passage. You should aim to seek out striking moments or sections of the selected text that are evocative in a recognizable way, such as an allusion to another text, a literary technique that is identifiable, a reference to an important historical moment, or a unique form of phrasing that is worthy of extended analysis.
The aim of this first close reading essay assignment is to select a text from the Fiction block of readings (from January 17th to February 2nd) and find a specific passage that meets the criteria listed above. Once you have selected a specific passage, the aim is to then develop an essay response that analyzes the passage in detail. Ask yourself these questions: is it part of a larger pattern, what do these patterns indicate about the text or the literary phenomenon you have identified? What words or adjectives are being used and to what effect? These are merely a few starting questions to begin your analysis, which should then culminate in a minimum 750 and maximum 1000 word formal essay that follows MLA formatting.
Challenge yourself, take risks, and find passages that speak to your interests or concerns. The best essays are ones that develop a clear, concise, and motivated argument that capably substantiates your claims. Try to avoid writing in the first-person if possible, because it leads to an informal tone or diction. Let the argument speak for itself, and trust that you have chosen the right material and are analyzing it credibly and persuasively.
Please submit the essay in double-spaced Times New Roman 12-point font with 1-inch margins. Please see the example essay in the Resources module for formatting reference.
NOTE: If you would like more information about how to write a Close Reading Essay, please visit these sites, HERELinks to an external site. and HERELinks to an external site., and be sure to watch the Writing Lecture Videos available in the Resources module on our main Canvas page.