Research Paper Assignment
Select an author from the list of suggested research paper authors discussed in class. A list of the authors is on Blackboard.
Write a 5-page research paper on the author of your choice. The paper should have the following parts:
a) Introduction. The first paragraph of your paper should announce the importance or significance of the subject of your research. In other words, you should give the reader a reason for continuing to read your paper. Why is the author considered important? What is his place in literary history? How have experts evaluated the author’s performance and standing?
b) Biography of the author. What were the highlights of the author’s life? Where and when was he born? What were the circumstances of his early life? When did he achieve success? How did the author’s life experiences affect his themes? (Approx. 2 pages)
c) Review of the major works of the author. What were the highlights of his literary career? What are considered the most important works? What were the influences of the time and place in which the author wrote? What were the influences of other writers? What influences did the author have on future writers? (Approx. 1 page)
d) Close analysis of a single work of the author. Use the tools of analysis and interpretation discussed in class to make an assertion, or thesis statement, about one poem, story, or play by the author, then defend your assertion with supporting evidence from the text of the work and perhaps the testimony of experts. You may find that the easiest type of assertion to make is about the meaning of the particular work. What was the author trying to communicate? What intellectual or emotional response was the author trying to elicit from the reader? Which literary tools did the author use to achieve his or her end? How is the reader affected by the author’s achievement? (Approx 2 pages)
e) Conclusion. Gracefully round off your essay. Why will the author continue to be read?
f) A Works Cited page that lists the sources for your essay in alphabetical order.