Choose only one theme to focus on in your analysis.
Write a literary analysis focusing on the literary elements covered in the course using the texts listed below as your primary sources: “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin “A Good Man is Hard to Find” by Flannery O’Connor Read/listen to the short stories first, review the course content, then choose a topic, take notes, outline, and draft. Use the basic outline provided as the skeleton for your essay. Criteria: To address the task, you will use literary elements to analyze at least two different texts from the list above. You may use the different texts as illustrations of the particular theme, or you may compare and contrast the texts based on the theme. First, focus on the theme, and then analyze how the other literary elements support, explain, or develop the theme. Each body paragraph needs to focus on how the literary elements prove the thesis. Remember, the focus of the essay is to analyze the works, not to present a plot summary. Your essay should include a minimum of three (3) references from the primary text that you select. Do not include any outside research in this essay. Themes: Choose only one theme to focus on in your analysis. power, love, youth, maturity, social position, change, old versus new, idealism, duty, family, obligation, romance, reality. Literary Elements: choose as many as you need, but keep it manageable, usually no more than three. allusion, catharsis, character, conflict, foreshadowing, hubris, irony, narrator, plot, point of view, setting, symbol. Note: all essays must include the literary element of theme. Protagonist- the main, central character who engages the reader’s interest. Often this character is the hero of the story (He/she is primary agent propelling the story forward, and often the character who faces the most significant obstacles) 2. Antagonist- the character in a story who is against the protagonist (He/she is trying to prevent change or progress or goals/ideas of the protagonist) 3. Exposition-Introductory information about the story’s setting, characters, themes, and central conflicts. It tells what has gone on before the story begins, what the relationships between characters are, and other essential information about the story. 4. In medias res- a plot strategy that is used when we enter a story in the middle of some important event or moment. 5. Conflict-In literature, this means any struggle between opposing forces. Usually, the main character (protagonist) struggles against some other force (another character, him or herself, or even the environment). 6. Rising Action-relevant incidents that create suspense, interest, and tension in a narrative. The rising action leads up to the climax. 7. Climax-the moment of greatest emotional tension in a narrative 8. Falling action- events that happen as a result of the climax. Typically the falling action reduces tension (unravelling of the climax). 9. Dénouement (resolution) – the outcome or result of a situation or sequence of events (the ending of the story) 10. Irony-a literary device that uses contradictory elements or situations to reveal a reality different from what appears to be true. For example, it is ironic for a police station to be robbed because the job of the police force is to prevent crime. 11. Dystopia-an imagined state or society, typically in the future, in which there is great suffering or injustice. Usually there is a totalitarian government. (A totalitarian government system is one that is centralized, dictatorial, and requires complete subservience to the state). 12. Utopia-an imagined state or society, typically in the future, in which all people are perfect or nearly perfect. All basic needs are met and everyone is satisfied and equal. 13. Satire-the literary technique of using ridicule to expose and criticize people or society’s stupidity or vices. Satire is often used by authors to expose human frailty or error. “Harrison Bergeron” is an example of satire. 14. Narrator-the voice of the person telling the story. The narrator can be using first, second, or third person. 15. Theme-The central meaning of a literary work. 16. Plot-the arrangement of events in a story 17. Flashback-a literary device that informs the readers about what happened before the opening scene of a work. 18. Tone-the author’s implicit attitude toward the reader or the people, places, and events in a work as revealed by the elements of the author’s style 19. Symbol-a person, object, image, word, or event that evokes a range of additional meanings beyond and usually more abstract than its literal significance 20. Style-the distinctive and unique manner in which a writer arranges words to achieve particular effects