American Literature Task (2) COKE

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American Literature Task (2) COKE
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3 PARAGRAPHS PER ASSIGNMENT….MLA IN TEXT CITATION…SINGLE SPACE Begin your essay with a clear thesis that reflects the question you select, but you may need to narrow and focus the question. Explain your thesis, the focus of your essay. Do not begin with a general statements. Define any relevant terms, and then support this focus with specific examples and quotes from the text.note: if your essays are too short or undeveloped or if they are general/ vague, they will not receive a good grade.DO NOT USE ONLINE SOURCES; IF YOU DO, YOU WILL FAIL WITH A ZERO

1. Using ONE of the Modern texts in our content unit on Modernism, such as “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” “Mending Wall,” or “A Rose for Emily,” define and explain Modernism. Provide at least four characteristics of Modernism and explain how these characteristics are illustrated in the text you select – use these characteristics to explain the text’s meaning. Be specific.

2. Explain the traditional definition of the dramatic monologue as developed by Browning; then explain how and why Eliot’s adapts and changes this type of poem in “The Love Song.” Why does Eliot change the traditional definition for a more modern audience – what is his purpose? Be specific.

3. Using either chapter 9 of Vandover and the Brute, “The Open Boat,” OR “The Blue Hotel,” define American Naturalism as a literary movement, providing at least four characteristics. Make sure you use examples/quotes from one of these texts. You may include Norris’ definition of Naturalism.

4. In “To Build a Fire,” compare and contrast the two characters, the man and the dog. Neither one has a have proper name. Are we meant to compare the two? How does such a comparison help us understand the story as Naturalistic? For example, which one is more adapted to his environment?

5. Rivers function as symbols in “The Negro Speaks of Rivers”; what do they symbolize? What do they mean? Several rivers are mentioned: name them and explain how they provide clues to the poem’s meaning.

6. In “Sweat,” Sykes is associated with phallic symbols: the bullwhip and the snake. Why use these symbols to characterize him? In contrast, Delia is surrounded by gynocentric symbols (symbols that are about female creativity): laundry basket, skillet, and the house itself. Compare and contrast the use of symbols as touchstones of meaning in the story. What do these symbols reveal about each character and the story’s meaning?

7. How and why does Miss Emily try to control time and circumstance? Why does she kill Homer? Consider her background including her relationship with her father – what does he have to do with her mental state? Narrow/focus.

8. Discuss the narrator in “Mending Wall” – who is telling the story and why? What is the narrator’s tone or attitude? Compare and contrast the narrator’s point of view about the wall with his neighbor’s. What is the narrator’s attitude toward his neighbor? What does the narrator mean when he says his neighbor “walks in darkness” or compares him to a “stone-age savage”?




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New York University

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