Assignment: Comparison of “Wakefield” and Walden

In Walden and in the short story “Wakefield,” Thoreau and the character Wakefield can be seen as conducting experiments in leading a new kind of life. Using “Wakefield” and the “Conclusion” of Walden, write an essay (1,000–1,250 words long) in which you discuss how these experiments differ, what the two protagonists seem to gain from them, and why they decide to “go back.” What do the two accounts suggest about the relationship between the individual and society, as Hawthorne and Thoreau viewed them?

Grading Rubric

Fell Below Expectations Met Expectations Exceeded Expectations
A clear thesis is established 1 2 3
Subclaims are established in the main body paragraphs that clearly support the thesis 1 2 3
Academic sources are incorporated that support the student’s thesis and subclaims. Minimum of 2 required. 1 2 3
Direct quotes, summaries, and paraphrases are used from the text to support the thesis and subclaims. Minimum of 5 required 1 2 3
The argument is compelling and persuasive and a deeper meaning of the text is addressed rather than a simple summary 1 2 3
The organization pattern is logical. 1 2 3
Required length is met 1 2 3
MLA formatting guidelines are followed 1 2 3