Reading and Writing About Literature A Portable Guide

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  • Edition: 3rd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2012-08-03
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
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Far less expensive than comparable guides, Reading and Writing about Literature: A Portable Guideis an ideal supplement for writing courses where literature anthologies and individual literary works that lack writing instruction are assigned. This brief guideintroduces strategies for reading literature, explains the writing process and common writing assignments for literature courses, provides instruction in writing about fiction, poetry, and drama, and includes coverage of writing a research paper and of literary criticism and theory. This volume in the popular Bedford/St. Martin's series of Portable Anthologies and Guides offers a trademark combination of high quality and great value.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. v
Introduction to Reading and Writing About Literaturep. 1
Why Read Literature?p. 2
Why Write about Literature?p. 3
What to Expect in a Literature Classp. 3
Literature and Enjoymentp. 5
The Role of Good Readingp. 6
The Value of Rereadingp. 6
Critical Readingp. 7
The Myth of "Hidden Meaning"p. 7
Active Readingp. 8
Annotatingp. 8
"Because I could not stop for Death" (Annotated Poem)p. 10
Note Takingp. 11
Journal Keepingp. 12
Using Reference Materialsp. 13
Asking Critical Questions of Literaturep. 14
Questions about the Textp. 14
"On My First Son" (Annotated Poem)p. 15
Questions about the Authorp. 15
Questions about the Cultural Contextp. 16
Questions about the Readerp. 17
Checklist for Good Readingp. 19
The Writing Processp. 21
Prewritingp. 21
Choosing a Topicp. 21
Developing an Argumentp. 22
The Thesisp. 23
Gathering Support for Your Thesisp. 26
Organizing Your Paperp. 27
Drafting the Paperp. 29
Introductions, Conclusions, and Transitionsp. 29
Revising and Editingp. 32
Global Revisionp. 32
Global Revision Checklistp. 33
Local Revisionp. 34
Local Revision Checklistp. 35
Final Editing and Proofreadingp. 35
Final Editing Checklistp. 36
Peer Editing and Workshopsp. 38
Tips for Writing about Literaturep. 40
Using Quotations Effectivelyp. 42
Adding to or Altering a Quotationp. 43
Omitting Words from a Quotationp. 44
Quotations within Quotationsp. 44
Quotation Marks with Other Punctuationp. 44
Quoting from Storiesp. 45
Quoting from Poemsp. 46
Quoting from Playsp. 47
Manuscript Formp. 49
Common Writing Assignmentsp. 51
Summaryp. 51
Responsep. 53
"Girl"p. 53
"A Boy's View of 'Girl'"p. 55
Explicationp. 56
"Upon Julia's Clothes"p. 57
"Poetry in Motion: Herrick's 'Upon Julia's Clothes'"p. 58
Analysisp. 59
"My Last Duchess "p. 60
"Possessed by the Need for Possession: Browning's 'My Last Duchess'"p. 62
Comparison and Contrastp. 63
"After Death"p. 64
"Speakers for the Dead: Narrators in 'My Last Duchess' and After Death'"p. 65
Essay Examsp. 66
Sonnet 73p. 69
"To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time"p. 69
Midterm Essayp. 71
Writing about Storiesp. 72
Elements of Fictionp. 72
Plotp. 72
Characterp. 72
Point of Viewp. 73
Settingp. 73
Themep. 74
Symbolismp. 74
Stylep. 74
Stories for Analysisp. 75
"The Yellow Wallpaper"p. 75
"The Story of an Hour" (Annotated Story)p. 89
Questions on the Storiesp. 92
Sample Paper: An Essay That Compares and Contrastsp. 92
Melanie Smith, "Good Husbands in Bad Marriages"p. 93
Writing About Poemsp. 96
Elements of Poetryp. 96
The Speakerp. 96
The Listenerp. 97
Imageryp. 97
Sound and Sensep. 98
Two Poems for Analysisp. 100
"Sonnet 116" (Annotated Poem)p. 101
Questions on the Poemp. 102
"The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" (Annotated Poem)p. 102
Questions on the Poemp. 107
Sample Paper: An Explicationp. 107
"Shakespeare Defines Love"p. 108
Writing About Playsp. 111
Elements of Dramap. 111
Plot, Character, and Themep. 111
Dictionp. 111
Melody and Spectaclep. 112
Settingp. 112
How to Read a Playp. 113
Director's Questions for Play Analysisp. 114
"Trifles"p. 115
Sample Paper: An Analysisp. 126
"Moral Ambiguity and Character Development in Triflesp. 127
Writing a Literary Research Paperp. 130
Finding Sourcesp. 130
Online Indexesp. 131
Periodicalsp. 133
Booksp. 134
Interlibrary Loanp. 134
The Internetp. 134
Evaluating Sourcesp. 135
Working with Sourcesp. 136
Quotationsp. 137
Paraphrases and Summariesp. 137
Commentariesp. 138
Keeping Track of Your Sourcesp. 138
Writing the Paperp. 139
Refine Your Thesisp. 139
Organize Your Evidencep. 139
Start Your Draftp. 139
Revisep. 140
Edit and Proofreadp. 140
Understanding and Avoiding Plagiarismp. 140
What to Document and What Not to Documentp. 143
Documenting Sources: MLA Formatp. 143
In-Text Citationsp. 146
Preparing Your Works Cited Listp. 149
Sample Research Paperp. 160
"Emily Dickinson's 'Because I could not stop for Death': Challenging Readers' Expectations"p. 161
Literary Criticism and Literary Theoryp. 166
Formalism and New Criticismp. 167
Feminist and Gender Criticismp. 168
Queer Theoryp. 169
Marxist Criticismp. 169
Cultural Studiesp. 170
Postcolonial Criticismp. 171
Historical Criticism and New Historicismp. 172
Psychological Theoriesp. 173
Reader-Response Theoriesp. 174
Structuralismp. 176
Poststructuralism and Deconstructionp. 177
Glossary of Critical and Literary Termsp. 179
Index of Termsp. 207
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