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Writing Objectives

1) To demonstrate mastery of the textual analysis genre
2) To learn to distinguish between evidence and summary
3) To think critically about a text
4) To examine an author’s purpose and to develop an argument about that purpose

The Assignment

Please write a textual analysis of one of the texts we have read up to this point in the semester. A textual analysis makes an argument about what the author’s purpose was in writing the text is. Thus, early in your essay, state your thesis about what you think the author’s goal was in writing his/her text. Use the remainder of the paper to prove your point. Remember, a textual analysis does not summarize the text. T

In writing your textual analysis you will need to do three things:

1) Identify and describe what you think the author wrote the text you are examining for.
2) Explain in detail that (or those) element’s function(s) in the text.
3) Make your argument give us a better understanding of the text–what is the text saying about reality? In short, you are giving your reading of the story through the lens of a single element.

Paper Requirements & Criteria:

** See the clear signal phrase (that supplies the point you are making and indicates that a quote will ensue), the colon that comes after this point, the quotation marks used for the citation, and how the period occurs after the parentheses. Also note the use of ellipses so that I use only the important parts of the quote. Refer to lesson on writing to help you analyze quotes and construct theses. Finally, you do not need to type “p.” or “page”–simply type the page number(s) where the quote can be found: Because there is NO research required for this assignment, your primary source will be your textbook. Because you will only be using this one source, you do not have to include a Works Cited page. However, after your direct citations (quotes) or paraphrases from the story, place the page number only in parentheses. Punctuate correctly, again, using MLA style. See the following hypothetical example:

Typed; double-spaced; standard margins, font, and print size; no cover pages; use MLA format for in-text citations; give your essay a unique title; length= 600-900 words. (You can go over the maximum limit if needed but remember that quality not quantity matters.) Avoid informal diction and the use of first person “I” or second person “you.”

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