Literary Research Paper
A literary research paper is a type of analysis where you’ll use material from outside sources to help support and develop your argument. The venerated (by English teachers at least) Purdue OWL tells us that “when you write an extended literary essay, you are essentially making an argument. You are arguing that your perspective—an interpretation, an evaluative judgment, or a critical evaluation is a valid one” By incorporating primary (the literary text you’re writing about) and secondary (literary scholarship) sources into your paper, you’re demonstrating your ability to understand and contribute to the conversation about a particular text. And by contributing to the conversation about a text you’re making a statement about “what we read, how we read, why we read, and what we value” (Baker)
This paper will require you to incorporate some of the concepts we’ve been studying all semester, so don’t forget to consult your book! It has a lot of valuable and helpful tips. You may write on any literary text we’ve covered in class that you haven’t already written about. You are also free to choose any other literary text in the textbook. If you really connected with a particular text, then think about writing your paper over it. Being interested in a text makes the research and writing process much easier.
(Note: You may also choose write on any other literary text in our book)
Once you have decided on a text, you need to decide on a topic. Your topic needs to be something specific. The Purdue OWL has a great list of common approaches that you can develop into a solid topic. You are by no means limited to this list. Feel free to come up with your own specific approach or topic.
A good topic is going to be more complex than the mother child relationship in A Raisin in the Sun. An idea like this is more of a starting point, a place for you to begin developing your ideas. As you reread the text and begin your research, you will find that your ideas will begin to develop until you have arrived at a more sophisticated and more arguable idea.
This essay requires you to use TCC resources for your outside research. You cannot use the public web. Here is a link to a TCC libguide that will help guide you in finding sources for your essay. : https://libguides.tccd.edu/c.php?g=186396&p=1232352
This website provides some great tips about the right and wrong kinds of thesis statements to write in a literature paper: https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/subject_specific_writing/writing_in_literature/writing_about_literature/index.html
This link gives you information about the components of a literary research paper (Note: the MLA citations listed in this document are not in the current format)http://learning.hccs.edu/faculty/david.james/engl2328/literary-analysis-research-paper/literary-analysis-research-paper-1
This pdf gives you an idea of the basic structure of a literary research paper. Keep in mind that this is not the only structure for a literary research paper: http://valenciacollege.edu/wp/cssc/documents/LiteraryResearchPaperStructure.pdf
Rough Draft: Monday 3 August
Final Draft: Thursday 6 August
Note: the due date for the final draft is a hard deadline. Grades are due only a few days after the end of the class, so I need a couple of days to grade your research papers and finalize your grades.