Project #89232 - Critical Analysis

In a critical analysis paper, the author is trying to argue for an interpretation of a book, story, play, strategy, etc. One of the key factors in becoming successful in this assignment is to avoid or minimize summary -- you are arguing for an interpretation. Remember, at the most basic level, a Critical Analysis is attempting to answer the question, “What does this mean?”

 

Please write a critical analysis over one of the following stories:

Alice Walker - “Every Day Use” 

http://xroads.virginia.edu/~ug97/quilt/walker.html

 

 

Please choose one of the following prompts to guide your analysis:

 

  1. Choose a character from one of the short stories who undergoes a change from beginning to end. Explain these changes over the course of the story. Analyze the causes for these changes. What might these changes mean?

  2. Find out about the background of the author of your short story. Analyze how the author’s life has influenced what they wrote. What might the author’s background mean in the context of the short story?

  3. Examine a setting in one of the short stories. Explain it in detail. Analyze how that setting either foreshadows things to come, explains a character in the story, or how it contrasts in some way.

  4. Describe the mood of one of the short stories. Analyze how the author creates the mood through descriptions and word choice. Why is this mood significant to the overall story?

  5. Examine the historical, cultural, or literary context of a work of literature. Analyze how understanding that context helps the reader understand that work.

  6. Describe the way irony is used in a short story. Analyze how that irony creates meaning. How does using irony work particularly well to develop meaning in the shorter work you’ve chosen?

  7. The conflict created when the will of an individual opposes the will of the majority is the recurring theme of many novels, plays, essays, and short stories. Select a short story in which a fictional character is in opposition to his or her society. Analyze the conflict and discuss the moral and ethical implications for both the individual and the society. Do not summarize the plot or action of the work you choose.

  8. In a novel by William Styron, a father tells his son that life “is a search for justice.” Choose a character from one of the assigned short stories who responds in some significant way to justice or injustice. Then write a well-developed essay in which you analyze the character’s understanding of justice, the degree to which the character’s search for justice is sucessful, and the significance of this search for the work as a whole.

  9. Choose a theme from one of the short stories assigned. Examine how the story develops and explores this theme through the characters, setting, events, word choice, etc. Why is this theme significant overall?

  10. Many works of literature deal with political or social issues. Choose a short story that focuses on a political or social issue. Then write an essay in which you analyze how the author uses literary elements to explore this issue and explain how the issue contributes to the meaning of the work as a whole. Do not merely summarize the plot.

  11. A symbol is an object, action, or event that represents something or that creates a range of associations beyond itself. In literary works a symbol can express an idea, clarify meaning, or enlarge literal meaning. Select a short story and, focusing on one symbol, write an essay analyzing how that symbol functions in the work and what it reveals about the characters or themes of the work as a whole. Do not merely summarize the plot.

  12. Many writers use a country setting to establish values within a work of literature. For example, the country may be a place of virtue and peace or one of primitivism and ignorance. Choose a short story in which such a setting plays a significant role. Then write an essay in which you analyze how the country setting functions in the work as a whole.

  13. Critic Roland Barthes has said, “Literature is the question minus the answer.” Choose a short story and, considering Barthes’ observation, write an essay in which you analyze a central question the work raises and the extent to which it offers answers. Explain how the author’s treatment of this question affects your understanding of the work as a whole. Avoid mere plot summary

  14. Novels and plays often depict characters caught between colliding cultures -- national, regional, ethnic, religious, institutional. Such collisions can call a character’s sense of identity into question. Select a novel or play in which a character responds to such a cultural collision. Then write a well-organized essay in which you describe the character’s response and explain its relevance to the work as a whole.

  15. Choose a topic or prompt of your own that is PREAPPROVED by Ms. Brandenburg. Here’s a link to a website that helps with developing questions to prompt critical thinking.

 

http://www.ucdoer.ie/index.php/How_to_Ask_Questions_that_Prompt_Critical_Thinking

 

Requirements:

  • A well-developed 1,500 - 2,000 word essay that answers one of the prompts above OR answers a question that is pre-approved and allows for an in-depth critical analysis.

  • An essay that is analyzing one of the short stories provided.

  • The use of primary source(s) material to support the points discussed

  • The significant use of at least 1 scholarly secondary source (C.R.A.P. tested web sources).

  • The use of MLA documentation -- in-text citations and works cited page

  • The smooth incorporation of sources through summary, paraphrase, and quotation.

  • A well developed introduction, conclusion, and thesis statement

  • A thesis statement which attempts to argue for an interpretation of the work selected.

  • The use of transitions to connect ideas with one another and provide a smooth reading experience.

  • The use of college-level thought and vocabulary.

  • A logical organizational system for paragraphs and the essay as a whole.

Some useful resources:






Suggestions for approach:




Suggested Structure:

 

  1. Introduction

    1. Identify the work being analyzed

    2. Provide any necessary background information

    3. Introduce your thesis.

  2. Short summary of the work/author background/Historical background

    1. Present only what the reader needs to know to understand your argument

    2. You may also provide a brief overview of the conversation regarding the piece to date and how your argument fits in with that conversation.

  3. Your argument

    1. Your argument is going to involve a number of sub-arguments that work together to prove the overall thesis.

    2. This should be the bulk of your paper

      1. All sub-arguments should be clearly identified and supported with evidence.

  4. Conclusion

    1. Reflect on how you’ve proven your interpretation

      1. Revisit your thesis

    2. Leave the reader with a final thought

 

 

Please write a critical analysis over one of the following stories:
Alice Walker - “Every Day Use” for the story to read from. http://xroads.virginia.edu/~ug97/quilt/walker.html

Please choose one of the following prompts to guide your analysis: I choosed,1.Choose a character from one of the short stories who undergoes a change from beginning to end. Explain these changes over the course of the story. Analyze the causes for these changes.

Subject English
Due By (Pacific Time) 10/28/2015 12:00 am
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