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Essay Prompt: “Story of an Hour”
Compose a critical analysis essay on one of the topics below.
Your essay should be well developed, unified, coherent, and grammatically correct.
Required length: 2-3 typed pages
Create a thesis statement, and back up your claim with support/evidence from the text.
Support should contain clear, specific examples from the story you are analyzing, as well as documentation for all text references.
Include at least two quotations from the story in each
body paragraph of your essay, for a total of 4 quotations from the story/poem.
about how citing poetry is different than stories.
Attention-getting introduction that establishes a clear context for the thesis
Precise two part thesis with a claim and a sense of purpose that references the literature
(through author, title, or character)
Clear two part topic sentences that support the thesis and include a reference to the thesis
2 Body paragraphs with 2-3 specific examples with 2-3 sentences of analysis for each
Transitional phrases to connect sentences and ideas smoothly
Insightful conclusion that connects the theme of the work to something more universal
Works cited page
Length between 2-3 pages
For the Works Cited page. It is not included in the two-page length requirement; it should
appear on a separate page at the end of your paper. You will automatically lose 20 points for not
including a Works Cited page.
1. Discuss how social expectations, especially concerning gender, imprison or entrap the
protagonist. Consider the expectations of a wife in the time period.
Before beginning your paper, read the writing handouts; use them as a guide while working
on your essay as well.
Use the outline form on the next page to plan your paper. You may write/type directly on the
form or on a separate page.
After completing a rough draft of your essay, use the handouts in Canvas to make sure you
have done everything correctly before submitting your essay.
Remember that when you write about literature, you should write in present tense, not past
tense. You should write as if the piece of literature and the characters are as alive today as they
were when the novel was written.
Parenthetical Citation from the Text:
You must use at least 4 direct quotes from the text within your paper to prove your point. A
direct quote is writing word for word what the source says. Do not use over 2 lines. You are to
put these words in quotation marks and cite the page number from which you got the
information. You can also paraphrase quotes from the book, but this too must have a citation.
Example: Nick says, “I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by
the inexhaustible variety of life” (Poe 46).
You may lead into the quote with a colon if you have a complete sentence that prepares the
reader for the following quotation. The sentence before the quotation must support it.
Example: Nick feels isolated from the outside world while he is at Tom and
Myrtle’s party: “I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the
inexhaustible variety of life” (Poe 46).
Do not use a drop quote, which is a quote that begins a sentence with no lead-in or introduction.
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