historical, social, political, economic, and artistic contexts
In a research paper of five or more pages, citing three or more scholarly references, explore the historical, social, political, economic, and artistic contexts that gave rise to the creation of one of the class texts. Focus on how the text was perceived at the time of its publication and is perceived now as having “modernized” some aspect in cultural, or having reflected a modernization in progress. Was this the writer’s intention? Has critical opinion about the text’s importance to the development of modernity changed over time?
This assignment will require a close reading of the text itself, as well as research in the library and in scholarly journals. How have literary theorists and historians explained the writer’s decision to create the text, to forge a particular style, and to treat upon a particular subject?
Remember that, as with any essay, you need to develop a strong and specificthesis—an argument that you are going to win by finding and structuring high-quality evidence. Many of your midterms lacked specific theses.
You may focus on the same text you examined in your midterm paper. In fact, many of you probably should do so.
Also, please remember that I prefer, and every writing teacher you will ever have prefers, that you actually write something you understand and care about. Filler, long pointless introductions, vague latinate phrases full of bombast about how great some writer is, nonspecific theses about the “importance” of a text, long quotations that lead nowhere—these are the hallmarks of a rushed paper by a bored writer. Don’t waste your time filling five pages with nonsense. Talk to me about how to develop a thesis that is interesting to you. Please. Thank you.
? Madame Bovary, Flaubert, trans. Geoffrey Wall
? Orlando, Woolf
? A Mercy, Morrison
? Faust, Goethe, trans. Cyrus Hamlin & Walter Arndt
The prompt for the final research paper (5+ pages) will ask you to connect your close reading of one of the texts with an in-depth understanding of it its historical, social, political, economic, and artistic contexts
You’ll need to incorporate at least 3 scholarly references (peer-reviewed articles) into your final paper. I want to make sure you have some key links:
Searchable databases of all scholarly resources – http://dewey.brooklyn.cuny.edu/resources/?view=databases
Scholarly resources by subject area – http://dewey.brooklyn.cuny.edu/resources/?view=subjects
What makes a good paper (good quick refresher) – http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/618/01/
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