Kim Woods

• ENG125
 • Assignments
 • Week 5 – Final Paper
 • Week 5 – Final Paper 
 • Literary Analysis 

• Hi, it’s Michelle from the Writing Center. Students, you have now reached the end point of the class, which means you will be revising and submitting your final literary analysis essay. This assignment requires you to focus on analyzing the conflict portrayed in literature. By writing and analyzing literature, you not only gain a deeper understanding of it, but you practice your critical thinking skills.  • In Week Three of the class, you wrote your rough draft analyzing a conflict. This week, you will develop and revise this draft to create a final essay. Be sure to review your draft, as well as your instructor and peer comments, before you revise it. 

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 • Here are some key features of the assignment:

● The literary analysis should be organized around your thesis or argument, which is the controlling idea of the entire essay. 

  ● Your essay should analyze a work or works from the approved List of Literary Works. A link to that list is provided in the assignment overview in Weeks 3 and 5.  

● You will use one of the approved written assignment prompts to write your analysis. The links to these prompts are also provided in the assignment overview in Week 3 and Week 5.  

● In your analysis, you will focus on one or two primary text(s). 

  ● Be sure to include references from at least two secondary sources. If you need help finding those sources, contact an Ashford Librarian. They are experienced with this course and can help you find the appropriate sources. 

  ● Be sure to use direct quotes from your research and from the story or poem you are analyzing. Citing sections from the literature will help you support and/or clarify your argument.  

● Your essay should also include a discussion of some literary elements as part of its analysis. 

  ● In most academic writing, you should avoid the first person and second person point of view. Instead, use the third person point of view. You can visit the Ashford Writing Center to get more information on how to use the third person point of view. 

  ● And the last bit of advice: do not summarize the plot. You should assume your reader already knows the story. Only provide details about the plot if it ties into your analysis. 

  • I hope this helps you to understand the assignment better. You are always free to ask your instructor about how to do this assignment. Do not hesitate to do so! Good luck with your writing.

Why Write a Literary Analysis?

 Literature teaches us about the value of conflict. We experience conflict in our personal relationships and in our interactions with society. A literary analysis helps us recognize the conflict at work in literature; this gives us greater insight into the personal conflicts that we face. In addition, learning how to closely read, analyze, and critique a text is beneficial beyond a literature course in that it improves our writing, reading, and critiquing abilities overall.

How to Write a Literary Analysis

 It is important to understand that some conflicts in literature might not always be obvious. Considering how an author addresses conflict via literary techniques can reveal other more complex conflicts or different kinds of conflicts that interact in multiple ways. Analyzing those more complicated elements can help you discover what literature represents about the human experience and condition. With this in mind, consider that your thesis might be a claim about how conflict is represented in a work, whether through character, setting, or tone. This is not a personal reflection on conflict in general or a conflict you face but an analysis of how literary elements are used to express a conflict in a given literary work—in this case, a short story.

The literary analysis should be organized around your rough draft and thesis statement. Your thesis is the controlling idea of the entire essay. In the Week One assignment you submitted a proposal in which you chose a topic based on the List of Writing Prompts  . You also identified a short story to analyze from the List of Literary Works  . In Week Two you compiled an annotated bibliography in which you identified your primary and secondary sources.

In Week Three, you created a rough draft and revised your working thesis. You also incorporated research into this draft.

 Assignment Instructions

 In this assignment, you will refine that thesis and essay even further and develop your argument. You are required to incorporate your instructor’s feedback in your Final Paper and to take peer feedback into consideration.

 In your paper,

• Create a detailed introduction that contains a thesis that offers a debatable claim based on one of the prompts on the list.

 • Apply critical thought by analyzing the primary source you selected from the approved List of Literary Works. Avoid summary and personal reflection. 

• Develop body paragraphs that contain clear topic sentences and examples that support the argument. 

• Write a conclusion that reaffirms the thesis statement and includes a summary of the key ideas in essay.

 • Apply your knowledge of literary elements and other concepts in your response to the prompt. Reference the list of literary techniques   found in Week Two of the course and discussion forums. 

• Incorporate research from the primary and secondary sources.

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