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Essay 4 Assignment: Literary Analysis

This essay assignment brings together many of the course outcomes that have been included in various assignments this semester.

Minimum Course Outcomes: Students will be competent in reading instructions and essays. Students will be able to write essays substantially free of major errors of standard written English. Students will be able to use supporting details in an essay. Students will be competent in structuring essays. Students will be competent in formatting their essays according to MLA conventions. Students will be able to incorporate information from two or more distinct sources into an essay with an analytical or argumentative purpose. Students will learn that the process of writing requires working with drafts in order to achieve an effective final product.

Essay 4: Literary Analysis Prompt: Compare and contrast the settings in “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner and Trifles by Susan Glaspell. How might these settings contribute to the loneliness and isolation of the main characters? What significant ways are the settings alike and in what significant ways are they different?

Essay 4 is a text-based essay; use “A Rose for Emily” from the Norton Field Guide to Writing with Readingsand Trifles from our class modules as evidence. Do not consult outside sources. Do not use Internet sources. I have read these sources, and I want to know your thoughts. Be wary of finding ideas on the Internet as well. These ideas usually show up in the writing and on Turnitin as plagiarism.

Read the following form The Norton Field Guide to Writing: “Comparing and Contrasting” (380-387); “Literary Analyses” (206-215), and “Synthesizing Ideas” (473-475).

  • Stay within 25 words of the assignment word count. Write 700 to 850 words.
  • Create an introduction that provides background on authors, that provides a short summary of their works, and that grabs a reader’s attention. A short summary might be one or two sentences. More evidence from their works will be posted in the body of the essay as evidence for your points.
  • Create an assertive thesis that responds to this specific assignment. This thesis should be one or two sentences. (Try placing your thesis at the end of the introduction for clear organization.)
  • Create assertive topic sentences that reflect the content and organization established in the thesis.
  • Boldface the thesis and topic sentences.
  • Develop each body paragraph with examples and quotations from “A Rose from Emily” and Trifles.
  • Write your essay in the present tense. (Write in the present tense when writing about a text.)
  • Include an author’s full name on first mention. In the body of the essay, use the
    author’s last name without a title. In the conclusion, include the author’s full name as a reminder to the reader.
  • MLA-style documentation is required. Examples and quotations must be cited according to MLA standards. Include at least one quotation in each body paragraph. Missing or incorrect MLA documentation may result in a failing grade for the essay.
  • Create a conclusion that refers back to the thesis. The conclusion should sum up the meaning of the essay and be memorable to the reader. Don’t use the phrase “in conclusion.” Encourage the reader to keep reading until the last word.
  • Do not use the pronouns “I,” “you,” or “we” to present ideas. Instead, state your points directly. “You” is too informal and can offend the reader if he or she disagrees with your point. “We” is unclear; who is the “we”? The pronoun “I” serves as an unnecessary filter between your idea and the reader.
  • Proofread your writing. Read your essay from the last sentence to the first sentence, looking for errors. Do not rely on your computer’s spelling and grammar checker. Essays with numerous errors may earn a failing grade.
  • Present your paper using MLA style format. Essays with missing or incorrect MLA paper format may earn 15 fewer points.

MLA Documentation and MLA Paper Format

  • MLA Works Cited page entry “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner: Since our textbook is an anthology, the Works Cited entry will be #19. Work(s) in an anthology, page 525, in The Norton Field Guide
  • MLA Works Cited page for Trifles by Susan Glaspell will be #31: Work on a Web Site, page 531 in The Norton Field Guide.
  • MLA paper format: MLA paper format is required for essay assignments. See Formatting a Paper, pages 539-548, in The Norton Field Guide. (The example paper is a research paper, but the basic format is the same for class submissions.)
  • MLA in-text citations: See MLA Style, In-text Citations, page 498, The Norton Field Guide.
  • MLA Style Official Web Site (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. Our textbook provides this link that covers MLA style.

Please ask any questions you have about this assignment. One-on-one writing help is available during office hours, at the Writing Lab in G-006 on Santa Fe College’s main campus, an through Smarthinking Online Tutoring.


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