Strategies for writing a literary essay for college

Quantity QTY click any section below to continue reading Full Description About the Unit This unit helps fifth graders meet sky-high expectations for writing literary essays. Members of the class begin by writing an essay about a shared story—a poignant video clip that they watch and discuss together.

Strategies for writing a literary essay for college

Literary Analysis: Using Elements of Literature

Develop and organize arguments 5. Write the introduction 6. Write the body paragraphs 7. Write the conclusion 1. Now all you have to do is choose one. Do yourself a favor and pick a topic that interests you.

If you are asked to come up with a topic by yourself, though, you might start to feel a little panicked. Maybe you have too many ideas—or none at all. Take a deep breath and start by asking yourself these questions: Did a particular image, line, or scene linger in your mind for a long time?

If it fascinated you, chances are you can draw on it to write a fascinating essay. Confusing moments in a work of literature are like a loose thread in a sweater: Ask yourself why the author chose to write about that character or scene the way he or she did and you might tap into some important insights about the work as a whole.

Did you notice any patterns? Is there a phrase that the main character uses constantly or an image that repeats throughout the book? Did you notice any contradictions or ironies? Great works of literature are complex; great literary essays recognize and explain those complexities. Maybe the main character acts one way around his family and a completely different way around his friends and associates.

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The best questions invite critical debates and discussions, not just a rehashing of the summary. Finally, remember to keep the scope of your question in mind: Conversely, is this a topic big enough to fill the required length?

Frankenstein and his monster alike?

strategies for writing a literary essay for college

Keep track of passages, symbols, images, or scenes that deal with your topic. These are the elements that you will analyze in your essay, and which you will offer as evidence to support your arguments.

For more on the parts of literary works, see the Glossary of Literary Terms at the end of this section. Elements of Story These are the whats of the work—what happens, where it happens, and to whom it happens.

All of the events and actions of the work. The people who act and are acted upon in a literary work. The main character of a work is known as the protagonist. The central tension in the work.

When and where the work takes place. Elements of setting include location, time period, time of day, weather, social atmosphere, and economic conditions.

The person telling the story. The narrator may straightforwardly report what happens, convey the subjective opinions and perceptions of one or more characters, or provide commentary and opinion in his or her own voice.

The main ideas or messages of the work—usually abstract ideas about people, society, or life in general. A work may have many themes, which may be in tension with one another.

Elements of Style These are the hows—how the characters speak, how the story is constructed, and how language is used throughout the work. How the parts of the work are assembled. Some novels are narrated in a linear, chronological fashion, while others skip around in time.

Some plays follow a traditional three-or five-act structure, while others are a series of loosely connected scenes. Some authors deliberately leave gaps in their works, leaving readers to puzzle out the missing information.

The perspective from which a story is told. In first-person point of view, the narrator involves him or herself in the story.How you write a literary analysis essay will differ depending on course requirements, but all essays should cover four key areas of literary analysis: theme, structure, plot and character.

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Many people struggle greatly with writing reports and essays. From developing topics, to conducting research, to formulating their non-fiction documents, the process of writing reports and essays can be such an unwelcome task that some people consider it a cruel punishment.

Writing Resources Teaching writing Writing strategies Writing Prompts Essay writing Writing ideas Teaching Ideas Literary essay Informational Writing Forward Assignment Writing site from Essay Bureau available at low cost for students that helps them to complete their assignment easily.

Click on a grade level below to expand the accordian table and see links to specific units of study. ELA Common Core-Aligned Units. Kindergarten Units. Writing Literary Essay. Poetry: Discovering the Voice Inside Your Heart. Informational Research Writing. Teachers College Reading & Writing Project video library.

The Teaching Channel. The purpose of the rhetorical analysis essay is not to summarize a piece of writing, but to strategies in producing clear communication through writing? 2. Was the author successful in using the various rhetorical appeals and strategies for the How to Write the LLD/ENGL A Rhetorical Analysis Essay, Spring 4 of 4.

SparkNotes: The Outsiders: How to Write Literary Analysis