Write a literary analysis focusing on the literary elements covered in the course using the texts listed below as your primary sources:
“A Fable for Tomorrow” by Rachel Carson
Rural Hours by Susan Fenimore Cooper
Walden by Henry David Thoreau
“A Wind-Storm in the Forests” by John Muir
Read the short stories and novel excerpts first, review the course content, then choose a topic, take notes, outline, and begin drafting.
Use the basic outline provided as the skeleton for your essay.
To address the task, you will use literary elements to analyze at least two different works from the list above. You may use the different works as illustrations of the particular theme, or you may compare and contrast the works based on the theme.
First, focus on the theme, and then analyze how the other literary elements support, explain, or develop the theme. Each body paragraph needs to focus on how the literary elements prove the thesis. Remember, the focus of the essay is to analyze the works, not to present a plot summary. Your essay should include a minimum of three (3) references from the primary texts that you select.
Themes: Choose only one theme to focus on in your analysis.
Examples: human influence or human responsibility in nature; the interconnectedness of wildlife, the natural world, and humans; peace; solitude; society and work; simplicity; wilderness; loneliness; love; beauty; truth; anthropomorphism.
Literary Elements: choose as many as you need, but keep it manageable, usually no more than three.
allusion, metaphor, simile, conflict, foreshadowing, hubris, irony, narrator, plot, point of view, setting, symbol, imagery, analogy; Note: all essays must include the literary element of theme.
Meeting several course objectives (from the syllabus)
Forming a coherent analysis
Crafting a valid argument
Supporting stance/claims with credible evidence from primary sources
Drafting, revising, editing/proofreading, and refining one’s writing
Managing time while executing tasks
Learning how literature and writing offer a larger message beyond the classroom
Checklist: Does your essay have…
an introduction with the thesis as the last sentence?
body paragraphs that equally cite quotes from the texts and necessary summary information?
body paragraphs with clear topic and concluding sentences that directly relate back to the thesis?
At least Three references from the primary texts?
at least 75% of the writing that is your words and thoughts?
a formed and defended clear message for your reader. Don’t “ride the fence.” Take a clear stance.
a polished “appearance?”
Avoid first and second person pronouns.
Avoid unanswered rhetorical questions.
a creative title
in-text citations: each quote (from each text) is appropriately introduced and cited afterward.
a conclusion that recaps your evidence, restates your thesis (not verbatim), etc.
an MLA header (your name, my name, the course title, and the paper’s due date), top right: your last name, insert page numbers
12-point Times New Roman font
One-inch margins (Don’t bother adjusting these, your computer should automatically be set here.)
a Works Cited page in MLA format
a minimum of 750 words.
Remember, there is no upper limit, but make sure your paper is focused and concise.
Note: any plagiarized material will cause you to fail the course. If you are unsure of a source, how to cite a source, how to use a source, or how to set up with Works Cited page, ask me! There is no penalty for asking questions.
Reference the rubric to double check that you’re meeting the essay requirements!
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