American Literature – The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano
Journal Instructions and Topic Choices Three journals are required during the semester. Journals must be written on current readings. Journals are due on Thursdays. Only one journal can be written per week. Journals need to written in MLA format. They should be AT LEAST 15 sentences and include a thesis that introduces the work, the author, and the journal topic. Journals are not summaries. If you choose to write on poetry, you will need to include at least THREE poems by the same author. Choose ONE of the following to address in your journal. 1. Apply 2 of the steps of characterization to a major or minor character in the work by discussing how the technique reveals something about his society. ▪ What a character says ▪ What a character does ▪ What a character looks like ▪ What others say about him ▪ What the author says about him 2. Apply 2 of the methods of evaluating literature to the work. ▪ Historical provenance ▪ Details of the lifestyle of the period ▪ Psychological accuracy ▪ Position in the history of literature ▪ Insight into the author’s perspective 3. Define the genre to which the work belongs and apply 2 parts to specific examples. 4. No scene of violence exists for its own sake. Choose a violent scene and discuss its relevance to 2 different characters, not how it relates to the plot. 5. List 2 themes of the work and for each briefly discuss how each is revealed through character, incident or symbol. . 6. Xerox and paste a significant passage onto the journal and explain it in terms of its significance to the work. 7. Choose 2 symbols in the work and discuss their significance to a specific character(s), or choose Journal Instructions and Topic Choices one symbol and discuss 2 different ways in which it is employed. 8. Discuss how tone (the author’s voice) combined with the atmosphere (setting + plot) equal mood (reader’s feeling). 9. A touchstone was a piece of jasper used to determine the quality of gold; the word means a test of genuineness. Choose one of the following touchstone lines (or one of your own appropriate choosing) and apply it to a theme in the work. ▪ All the world’s a stage and the men and women merely players ▪ Fools rush in where angels fear to tread. ▪ When the going gets tough the tough get going. ▪ It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. ▪ Behind every great man is a great woman. ▪ Woman is man’s damnation. ▪ Absolute power corrupts absolutely. 10. Choose a touchstone line from the work and apply it to a character(s) in the work. 11. Discuss how a major or minor character violates or adheres to the conventions of his society and the result. 12. Discuss the effect of 2 mythological allusions in the work. 13. Discuss 2 of the characteristics of the period and how they are evident in the work. 14. (Man vs. Man; Man vs. Himself; Man vs. Nature; Man vs. Society)
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