Research Essay Requirements and Due Dates


Subject 1: Anne Bradstreet’s Poetry
Subject 2: Nathaniel Hawthorn’s “The Minister’s Black Veil” and other short stories
Subject 3: William Shakespeare’s “My Mistress’ Eyes are Nothing Like the Sun” and other poems

Select one of the authors and works from above. Read (re-read) the selected work(s), keeping a close watch for the particular literary element that interests you. You might choose to analyze the character and conflicts, literary devices, or theme and symbolism. As you read and note the presence of the particular element(s) in the work, you should begin to formulate mentally (and take notes on) your ideas on it. These ideas will later be turned into a working thesis or opinion about the work and the element(s).

The purpose of a literary analysis essay is to carefully examine and sometimes evaluate a work of literature or an aspect of a work of literature. As with any analysis, this requires you to break down the subject into its component parts. Examining the different elements of a piece of literature is not an end in itself but rather a process to help you better appreciate and understand the work of literature as a whole. For instance, an analysis of a poem might deal with the different types of images in a poem or with the relationship between the form and content of the work. If you were to analyze (discuss and explain). Analyzing a short story might include identifying a particular theme (like the difficulty of making the transition from adolescence to adulthood) and showing how the writer suggests that theme through the point of view from which the story is told; or you might also explain how the main character�s attitude toward women is revealed through is dialogue and/or actions.

You will want to be sure it includes your ideas about the work of literature (thesis sentence), textual evidence from the work supporting analytic ideas and thesis opinion, and research to gather and incorporate critical works of scholarly analysis that relate to or support your thesis opinion.

This paper will be graded on content, structure, grammar, and other things.
Papers should meet the following requirements:
– You should have a Works Cited page which includes all of your sources (follow MLA guidelines as can be found in the McGraw-Hill Handbook)
– Your essay must refer to a minimum of five secondary sources, two of which must be scholarly sources.
– Your essay must prove your thesis through an appropriate use of summaries, quotes, and paraphrases from both your primary and secondary sources.
– Essays that do not contain textual evidence in the form of summaries, quotes, and paraphrases will not receive a passing grade.
– Your quotes and paraphrases must be cited in MLA parenthetical style.
– Your essay must begin with a fully-developed introduction that includes an original thesis about your cultural topic.
– Your essay must end with a fully developed conclusion.
– Your essay must contain a final Works Cited page written in MLA style.
– Well-written essays that use scholarly sources exclusively will receive grades of A or B; essays that rely more heavily on popular, non-scholarly media such as encyclopedias, websites and media reviews when scholarly sources are available will receive grades of C and below.

Format Requirements:
– 2000 word minimum/3000 word maximum
– Typed with1 inch margins, Double Spaced, Arial size 12 font, and left justified
– Parenthetical citations and Works Cited page must follow MLA style
– Include the following in the upper right hand side of the first page singled-spaced: Your name; title of the essay; the number of words in your essay; the name, number, and section of your course; and your professor’s name
– Number each page, centering the page number at the bottom of the page. Proofread carefully.
The grade for the paper will be the average of the grades on each of the following criteria found on the rubric


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