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Your essay proposal must conform to the following conditions:

o It must be on a story and author you have not yet written on (either for your first

essay, or your mid-term essay)

o The finished essay must be approximately 800-1000 words in length, double-

spaced, in 12 pt. font, with personal and class information at the top

o The essay should have page numbers and a title that indicates what the essay is

actually about

o The essay must be a close-reading of 1-2 of our short stories with additional

academic research to support your argument.

o There must be a minimum of 4 academic sources that come from either a

scholarly text or an article from an academic journal. At least two of your sources

should be from literary critics. These sources should be directly quoted in your

paper – please do not just paraphrase them. No websites are allowed.

o All quotation formatting should be done according to MLA formatting guidelines

o You are free to develop your own thesis, or to choose one of the suggested

approaches below. If you develop your own approach, please check with me

before proceeding to the outline, research, and draft stages

o Essay proposals should be 1-2 pages in length with a short paragraph

outlining the research question being pursued, some academic resources that

have been consulted

o Next, you need to submit a rough essay outline that shows the major sections of

the argument with some supporting evidence and quotations (see the sample


o You may choose to develop a proposal on one of the short stories that we

have not yet covered, but your essay must focus on one of the selected

readings for this class

ï‚· Suggested approaches:

o Focus on structure of story, analyze character transformation, compare and

contrast two stories, discuss the significance of a writer’s literary style, investigate

the importance of symbolism in a story, use historical or social context to discuss

a story, or use one of the established literary theories (feminism, structuralism,

Marxist interpretation, etc.) to produce an argument about one of our texts

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