How To Write A Literary Criticism Essay

How To Write A Literary Criticism Essay-40
Remember, you’re looking for something you can prove or argue based on evidence you find in the text.Finally, remember to keep the scope of your question in mind: is this a topic you can adequately address within the word or page limit you’ve been given?

Remember, you’re looking for something you can prove or argue based on evidence you find in the text.Finally, remember to keep the scope of your question in mind: is this a topic you can adequately address within the word or page limit you’ve been given?

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Literary analysis involves examining all the parts of a novel, play, short story, or poem—elements such as character, setting, tone, and imagery—and thinking about how the author uses those elements to create certain effects.

A literary essay isn’t a book review: you’re not being asked whether or not you liked a book or whether you’d recommend it to another reader.

These are the whats of the work—what happens, where it happens, and to whom it happens.

When you’ve examined all the evidence you’ve collected and know how you want to answer the question, it’s time to write your thesis statement.

But until then, here are seven basic steps to writing a well-constructed literary essay: When you’re assigned a literary essay in class, your teacher will often provide you with a list of writing prompts. You’ll have a much better (not to mention easier) time if you start off with something you enjoy thinking about. Take a deep breath and start by asking yourself these questions: What struck you?

If you are asked to come up with a topic by yourself, though, you might start to feel a little panicked. Did a particular image, line, or scene linger in your mind for a long time?Don’t worry if you don’t know what you want to say yet—right now you’re just collecting ideas and material and letting it all percolate.Keep track of passages, symbols, images, or scenes that deal with your topic.Eventually, you’ll start making connections between these examples and your thesis will emerge.Here’s a brief summary of the various parts that compose each and every work of literature.A thesis is a claim about a work of literature that needs to be supported by evidence and arguments.The thesis statement is the heart of the literary essay, and the bulk of your paper will be spent trying to prove this claim.A literary essay also isn’t like the kind of book report you wrote when you were younger, where your teacher wanted you to summarize the book’s action.A high school- or college-level literary essay asks, “How does this piece of literature actually work? ” and, “Why might the author have made the choices he or she did?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.

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