Module 6 – Research for Literary Analysis
Writing analytically takes time, both for complex reasoning and for writing. Students and scholars alike strongly benefit from a writing process that involves multiple drafts—either through the creation of outlines, journaling, the writing of partial or full drafts, the preparation of abstracts, or a combination thereof—prior to final editing.
Approaching writing as a multi-phase process allows us to accomplish smaller steps along the way and build off our successes. By making time to focus on key aspects of analytical writing over several work sessions, we can build strong, well-developed final papers. In this module you will develop a literary analysis paper by completing pre-writing journal assignment in which you begin to develop a topic and thesis, by preparing a rough draft of your paper to submit to your instructor for feedback and research guidance, and finally by completing a final draft of your paper that includes appropriate academic citations and references.
This approach to writing and research as a process is not something only asked of students. Professional writers, whether journalists or literary authors, engage in similar multi-phase approaches to creating and polishing their best work. Most, if not all, professional writers will admit that frustration and fatigue will occur at some point during the writing process. Such feelings are deeply human and are not signs of limited ability. Indeed, the best writers learn to acknowledge and work with these feelings or perceptions as they steadily craft their next great piece. The activities in this module are designed to encourage you to work in at least a few stages to build your major essay for the course. Doing so will not only help ensure your final paper is of higher quality; working in this way also will help instill good habits for future writing, research and project completion 1 .
Course Learning Outcomes
This module addresses the following Course Learning Outcomes listed in the Syllabus for this course:
- Demonstrate proficiency in critical thinking
- Demonstrate understanding of Global Sociocultural Responsibility
- Recognize the relationships between cultural expressions and their contexts
- Understand cultural expressions
- Interpret and evaluate cultural artifacts and/or their contexts for significance
- Understand basic literary elements of specific genres: short story, poetry, and drama
- Analyze and evaluate selected works of literature in classroom or online settings
- Analyze and evaluate both in class discussions (whether face-to-face or electronic) and in class writing, selected works of literature
- Recognize selected major critical approaches to works of literature
- Analyze selected text from one or more critical perspectives
- Demonstrate and understand how literature is relevant to their personal, social, and historical awareness 1
Upon completion of this module, the student will be able to:
- Draft original thesis statements for analytical writing
- Identify relevant sources of quality through online research
- Incorporate diverse sources into a full-length essay
- Document sources using MLA, APA, or Chicago style
- Apply critical approaches to literature to specific texts 1
Readings and Resources
- No additional readings are required in this Module.
Optional Further Reading
- Bate, Jonathan. English Literature: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.
- Culler, Jonathan. Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.
- Eagleton, Terry. Literary Theory: An Introduction . Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2008.