Analysis of a short-story | English homework help

 This essay requires you to develop an argument based on close analysis of a passage or selection of no more than three passages from one of the short-stories that we’ve read for this week. 

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Raymond Carver, “Cathedral,” pp. 261-67

James Joyce, “Araby,” pp. 220-23

Katherine Mansfield, “Miss Brill,” pp. 135-37

Guy de Maupassant, “The Necklace”

ZZ Packer, “Buffalo Soldiers,” 105-107


What this means is that you have to read a representative part of the text closely, explicate the language (i.e. what is it saying and why it is important) and, ultimately, place it in the context of the story as a whole. You’ll need to identity what the author is doing in this particular passage and why. The effectiveness of your argument will depend on the way in which you analyze, interpret, and discuss textual evidence to substantiate your claims. To ensure you’re not merely summarizing the story, consider the difference between the sets of questions below.


Refer to the document “Questions for Close Reading a Literary Passage” in Unit 2 Course Materials folder for more specific guidelines, additional resources, and examples of close reading. The same folder also includes a close reading of selected passages from “The Empty Family,” a short-story by Colm Tóibín.


You must include a minimum of five (5) short, but significant, carefully selected details (key words or phrases—not long lines) from the primary source.  Format the first page and in-text citations according to the MLA style. MLA formatting makes attribution easier. The References section should follow APA, which is the desired format for your discipline.  You are not required to do outside research for this assignment, but if you choose to, go for it, and remember to cite all secondary sources appropriately.  Use the Purdue OWL (Online Writing Lab) for assistance with proper documentation.  Also see resources in our Course Materials folder and use Smarthinking.


Your essay must be 2+ pages (700+ words) and follow APA format.  Submit your essay in Turnitin by 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, November 27. See syllabus for our course ID and password.


REQUIRED: You need to submit your essay in two places: V-Camp Dropbox and Turnitin. In Turnitin, paste a copy of the grading rubric below at the end of your document (immediately following the References page/entries).  Failure to do so will result in loss of points. 


For ease of pasting the grading rubric, a Word document of the “Close Analysis Essay Criteria” is located in the Unit 2 Course Materials folder. The grading rubric, along with Turnitin tools, will allow me to provide you with extensive, detailed commentary on your writing.




ENG 200


COMPLETE Grading Rubric


UNITS 2 & 4: Close Reading Essay




Exceeds assignment expectations.





Meets assignment expectations.





Addresses most elements of the assignment.





Addresses few elements of the assignment.






does not meet the assignment requirements.




The analytical thesis is clear and engaging.  The introduction provides context for the thesis.  10


The thesis is evident, supported, and convincing throughout the essay.  Framing (opening and closing) sentences of paragraphs connect to the question of what the author is doing and why; the purpose of the literary work, theme, or genre and its effects; and/or how the issue or theme speaks to important social, cultural, economic, political and/or spiritual questions10













The essay demonstrates good close reading skills.  In other words, the writer supports the conversation with carefully selected details (quotes) from the reading. If the writer cites any long quotes, he/she explains and/or closely reads those quotes in detail. The writer considers the significance of certain words or phrases and how they are relevant to his/her interpretation of the work as a whole.  20








The argument incorporates a minimum of five (5) textual references from the primary source.  The citations are introduced using good signal phrases, thoroughly explained in terms of the point, and properly attributed using in-text documentation (pagination is correctly delineated in parentheses at the ends of sentences). 10


The writer uses proper in-text citations (page numbers at the ends of sentences) and includes an APA formatted Reference page or entry for all texts cited.  A penalty of up to 5 points applies for missing entries or improper formatting.
















The essay exhibits evidence of strong critical thinking.  The structure of the argument is clear and logical. The writer uses good transitions between ideas, signaling to readers any important shifts in thought.  10








Paragraphs are well structured, developed, and unified.




There are few grammatical, punctuation, or usage errors.















The essay meets the minimum length requirement of 2+ pages (700+ words). 5



(unchecked means yes)



(unchecked means yes)



The writer pastes this rubric at the bottom of his/her document.  A penalty of up to 5 points applies if not.



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