The Literary Essay for Grades Nine and Ten

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1 The Literary Essay for Grades Nine and Ten

2 Essay: From the French word essayer which means to try. You are trying to prove your argument An Essay is: a written argument which consists of an Introduction, a Statement of a Thesis, Support for that Thesis, and a Conclusion. an insightful, critical interpretation of the literary work, where you provide your own formal interpretation of the topic.

3 Structure of the Essay The essay can be divided into three major areas: Introduction Body Conclusion

4 Introduction This is the first paragraph in your essay. The introduction must: capture the reader s attention! introduce the topic, the literary work and its author provide the reader with a clear understanding of your argument include the Thesis as the final sentence

5 Topic or Thesis? Many characters are responsible for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. The tragic hero always contributes in some measure to the tragedy in which he perishes This is a topic because it does not make a claim; it is a statement of fact.

6 Thesis In one direct sentence, your thesis should state your central idea. It is the point you wish to make about your topic. Example: Friar Laurence is most responsible for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. In Shakespeare s play Romeo and Juliet, Juliet, Romeo and Friar Laurence are most responsible for the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. Although Lady Macbeth is not the hero of the play Macbeth, she is completely responsible for her tragic fate. These are both thesis statements because a claim has been added to the statement of fact.

7 Format of Introduction Paragraph General to specific First line to catch reader s attention The three arguments should be briefly introduced in the introduction Thesis completes the paragraph.

8 Body: Organizing the Arguments Ways to arrange your arguments: Chronological in the order events occurred Climactic varying significance of points Logical cause and effect; one point leads to the next Remember that a good paragraph is unified. It leads the reader in a logical and coherent manner. The content of the paragraph must clearly relate to a single main idea.

9 Body: Paragraph Structure Each body paragraph: begins with a Topic Sentence which clearly identifies the main idea of the paragraph. It introduces one part of your argument. develops and expands on the argument presented using textual examples and quotations from the literary work to support your claims relates each argument to the thesis develops your own ideas about the topic ends with a linking sentence connecting the argument to a new argument in the next paragraph

10 Organizing your Argument T/A - Topic/Arguments C - Context E - Evidence A - Analysis This is how to set up an outline. Follow this process for organizing the body of the essay and your paragraphs

11 Topic/Argument Begin every argument [new paragraph] of your essay with a sentence which clearly identifies what will be proven in this section of your essay. This statement is often referred to as a Topic sentence Romeo is partly responsible for the tragedy... Juliet is more responsibble for the tragedy... Friar Laurence is most responsible for the tragedy...

12 Context You need to situate the information that you are presenting. It is where you indicate to your reader: - who said what it is that you are using (evidence) - when it is said - where it is said Recall: the literary significance handout section on context

13 Evidence This is the information that you are using to prove your thesis It is usually referred to as research It is the what part of the W s For each argument, you should have three major points presented in chronological order supported by quotations.

14 Analysis It is the observations that you make about the evidence that you use to prove your arguments; this is how you prove your thesis It is not summarizing or paraphrasing You must use the evidence and make the connections between the evidence and the point that the evidence is proving Analysis is the area that students generally struggle with the most. Everything must come back to your analysis

15 Conclusion Should echo the main argument without repeating it Summarizes the essay s most important claims Brings the essay to an appropriate and effective close You may consider the question What if in your conclusion.

16 Concluding Paragraph: Begin with the thesis, restated, but in slightly different words Then recap your three main arguments Finish with a general statement, indicating to the reader why your essay was important and what makes it significant.

17 A Formal Literary Essay is not a summary of the elements of fiction (plot, character, and setting). should not retell the story, or prove that the characters, setting or themes existed in the literary work. presents your argument in the present tense. is always written in the third person. It does not use first or second person pronouns (I, we, us, me, my, myself, mine, our, you, your).

18 A Formal Literary Essay does not use contractions. (don t, can t, shouldn t, doesn t) avoids clichés (the ball is in her court), slang (dude), colloquialisms, and idioms (call it a day). does not use stage directions. (This essay will prove, the above quotation proves, the following quotation will show, this has just proven that, in my opinion, in conclusion, in summary).

19 Literary Essay Format Type your paper on a computer and print it on standard 8.5 x 11-inch white paper. Double-space the text of your paper. Set the margins of your paper to 1 inch on all sides. Indent the first line of each paragraph one half-inch (five spaces) from the left margin. Create a header in the upper right hand corner that includes your last name followed by a space with a page number (Smith 1). Number all pages consecutively in the upper right-hand corner, one-half inch from the top and flush with the right margin. Number the first page of your paper. Italicize the Titles of all major works (books, plays, publications) and include the names of poems and short works in quotation marks

20 Formatting your first page Do not make a Title Page for your paper unless specifically requested by your teacher In the upper left-hand corner of the first page, write your name your instructor's name the course title ENG 2D1A the date on separate lines (double-spaced)

21 Smith 1 John Smith Ms. Masterson English 1D1d 18 May 2012

22 Formatting your first page Double space again and center the Title. Write the title in Title Case, not in all capital letters. Italicize or use Quotation marks when referring to other works in your title, just as you would in your text: Romeo and Juliet as a Tragedy (Play) Human Weariness in "After Apple Picking (Poem) Double space between the Title and the first line of your essay. Indent each of the paragraphs in your essay.

23 Guidelines for Quotations Quotations can be classified either as a: Long quotation (4 or more lines of text within your essay) [In this Romeo and Julietessay, do not use quotes that are longer than 4 lines!!] Short quotation (less than 4 lines of text within your essay) [These are the length you should be using for your paper!] The format for each type is specific and must be followed exactly.

24 Short Quotations and Shakespeare To indicate short quotations in your text, enclose the quotation within double quotation marks. Provide the Act Scene and line numbers for short quotations and include a complete reference on the Works Cited page. ( ) Punctuation marks such as periods, commas, and semicolons should appear after the parenthetical citation: Macbeth exclaimed: I have thee not, and yet I see thee still (2.1.35). Question marks and exclamation points should appear within the quotation marks if they are a part of the quoted passage, but after the parenthetical citation if they are a part of your text. Is this a dagger, which I see before me,/the handle toward my hand? ( ]

25 Short Quotations and Shakespeare Mark breaks in short quotations of verse with a slash [ / ] at the end of each line of verse. You can use this for quotations up to and including 3 lines of verse. Example: When the witches first appear in the desert place, the First Witch asks: When shall we three meet again? / In thunder, lightning, or in rain? ( )

26 Long Quotations and Shakespeare When you use longer quotations, set off the quotation by indenting it (each line) one inch (or ten spaces) from the left margin. Maintain double spacing throughout. Long quotations should be introduced by an informative sentence, usually followed by a colon. Quotation marks are unnecessary because the indented format tells readers that the words are taken word for word from the source.

27 Long Quotations and Shakespeare Your parenthetical citation should come after the final punctuation mark. When quoting verse, maintain original line breaks. Lengthy quotations should not be used in place of your own writing!

28 Longer Quotations and Shakespeare [4 lines or more] : In this essay do not use more than 4 lines from Shakespeare at a time!! When Macbeth refuses to return the daggers, Lady Macbeth exclaims: Infirm of purpose! Give me the daggers: the sleeping and the dead Are but as pictures: 'tis the eye of childhood, That fears a painted devil. ( ) [The quotation looks exactly as you see it in the play. Indent 10 spaces from the left, do not use quotation marks and include the reference at the end of the quotation].

29 Works Cited Your in-text citation must correspond with an entry on your Works Cited page. You will only have one entry on this page: Macbeth!! Begin your Works Cited page on a separate page at the end of your essay. It should have the same one-inch margins, last name, page number and header as the rest of your paper. Label the page Works Cited (do not underline the words Works Cited or put them in quotation marks) and center the words Works Cited at the top of the page.

30 Works Cited: Capitalization, Punctuation and Indentation Capitalize each word in the titles of articles and books, but do not capitalize articles, short prepositions, or conjunctions unless one is the first word of the title or subtitle: Gone with the Wind, The Art of War, There Is Nothing Left to Lose Use underlining for titles of larger works (books, magazines) and quotation marks for titles of shorter works (poems, articles) Do not indent the first line of each Works Cited entry, but indent any additional lines one half inch (or five spaces)

31 Citation of Books First or single author's name is written last name, first name. The basic form for a book citation is: Lastname, Firstname. Title of Book. Place of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication. Book with One Author [Use your red Macbeth book] Gleick, James. Chaos: Making a New Science. New York: Penguin Books, 1987.

32 STOP HERE for Now!!

33 Short Quotations To indicate short quotations in your text, enclose the quotation within double quotation marks. Provide the author and specific page citation (in the case of poems, provide line numbers) in the text, and include a complete reference on the Works Cited page. Punctuation marks such as periods, commas, and semicolons should appear after the parenthetical citation: Among us animals let there be perfect unity, perfect comradeship in the struggle (Orwell 11). Question marks and exclamation points should appear within the quotation marks if they are a part of the quoted passage, but after the parenthetical citation if they are a part of your text

34 Short Quotations If you are only using one source for your paper, and you have identified the source in your essay, you do not need to include the author s name. Example: The Blue Man smiled: You are here so I can teach you something. All the people you meet here have one thing to teach you. (47) Mark breaks in short quotations of verse with a slash / at the end of each line of verse: a. Cullen concludes, "Of all the things that happened there/ That's all I remember" (11-12). b. For Shakespeare, provide the Act, the scene and the line number As William Shakespeare's play Othello, begins, Iago challenges Brabantio: "Look to your house, your daughter, and your bags!" (1.1.85)

35 Long Quotations When you use longer quotations, set off the quotation by indenting it (each line) one inch (or ten spaces) from the left margin. Maintain double spacing throughout. Long quotations should be introduced by an informative sentence, usually followed by a colon. Quotation marks are unnecessary because the indented format tells readers that the words are taken word for word from the source.

36 Long Quotations Your parenthetical citation should come after the final punctuation mark. When quoting verse, maintain original line breaks. Lengthy quotations should not be used in place of your own writing. Use them only if they are absolutely necessary.

37 Quoting Verse Verse quotations of more than three lines in length need to begin on a new line. Indent each line one inch [or 10 spaces] from the left margin and double space between the lines. Do not add quotation marks unless they appear in the original text. The parenthetical citation, located at the end of the verse quotation and after the end punctuation, will include the author's last name and the line numbers (unless previously mentioned in text).

38 Example of Verse In his poem I Heard a Bird Sing," Oliver Herford recalls the magic of hearing the sweet song of a bird in the dark days of December: I heard a bird sing In the dark of December A magical thing And sweet to remember: We are nearer to Spring Than we were in September. (1 6)

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