Narrative Technique | Conversation between Emma

Narrative Technique in Particular Passage and Another Passage | conversation between Emma

Paper details:
Focus on conversations: (1) the conversation among Emma, Léon, Charles and Homais in II.2; (2) the conversation between Emma and the Curé in II.6; and (3) the conversation between Emma and Rodolphe in II.8. What is the role of clichés in these conversations? In what way do all of these conversations involve collision or disjunction between elements? How does the one between Emma and Rodolphe recall the parallel editing in Eisenstein’s first film?
Topic: Narrative technique. Word count: 1,500-1,750 (equivalent of 5-6 pages of Times New Roman double-spaced). Possible texts: Flaubert’s Madame Bovary.
Paper Contents. Your paper will discuss some form of narrative technique in a particular passage of Flaubert, and relate it to at least one other passage in the same text showing the same technique.
Your principal passage should consist of one to several sentences occurring together. It can be a piece of dialogue, a description, an explanation—anything. I want you to read the passage extremely carefully and think about deeply before you start making your outline. Make sure you understand its literal meaning: use dictionaries. Your paper should start by quoting the passage, locating it in the text, and interpreting it fully.
By “narrative technique” all I mean is how something is written: I don’t want you to think of Charles Bovary as just a human being like you and me, but also as an artifact—as an illusion created by various aspects of the narrative. Here are some possible techniques to think about:
(1) Juxtaposition (literary equivalent of the Kuleshov effect that Hitchcock explains): How does juxtaposition of elements create additional meaning, whether ironic or otherwise? Any of the more complex forms of cutting in our authors can be considered here.
(2) Theme, i.e. repetition of words, images, ideas, techniques to, again, add meaning that usually is not explicitly stated. Emma’s consumerism, for example, is a theme, which is related to a number of other themes—most ironically, to the theme of her as a consumer good. Another broad set of examples is offered by clichés representing the thoughts of the characters.
(3) Description + its ideologies. What implicit meaning do you find in the descriptions of landscape? Or, why does your author describe instead of just going for the plot? Why are some of the objects described never used in the plot?
(4) Anything having to do with a) point of view, b) free indirect discourse, c) limited or omniscient narrator, etc. If you study any of these aspects of the narrative, I want you to think, once again, of what meaning is added by your pick.
***Please remember that you are dealing with a translation: it is legitimate to talk about metaphors, but you can talk about word choice only when you have reason to believe it is the same in the original. Obviously, to talk about something like alliteration you absolutely need to consult the original. If you’ve read the text in French and want to talk about some aspect of the original phrasing, or to compare it with the translation, by all means go ahead. I will happily accept papers where you quote the work in the original.

Is research required? No. Is it accepted? Yes, but only if it is properly documented. Please go here to figure out how and when: .
If you do research, learn to distinguish between your source’s thoughts and your own. Citing your sources properly—in quotes, etc—increases you grade by a lot. Citing them as your own thoughts or discoveries decreases your grade by even more. Not a single unattributed phrase in your paper should be found elsewhere.
Organization. Formulate a thesis for your paper, something in the shape of “Passage x offers a remarkable example of the way descriptions of nature in work Z actually articulate the mood of the speaker,” or “When Jack says “I love you” to Jill, he is lying because he knows he is only capable of loving himself.” The best thesis sentences are those that relate the passage to some element in other parts of the work.
Your thesis is the point your paper will argue. Conversely, your paper should be structured as a chain of arguments, supported by evidence, demonstrating the truth of your thesis. Prepare an explicit outline of this structure—i.e. of the main argument and the arguments that support it, including their evidence.
Since your main argument will relate the passage to other parts of the work, you will need to present evidence from other parts of the work in the form of relevant, but preferably brief, quotations.
Writing. Start writing when you are satisfied with your a) notes; b) thesis; c) outline. Again, do think of your paper as an argument of your thesis. Your paper should also include your passage, whether at the start, or incorporated into the text. I do not need your paraphrase.
Say things as clearly as possible. If you use complicated words, please check their meaning. One of the most common problems with undergraduate papers is incorrect word usage, coming from your desire to seem smart or from your fear of writing college papers. Do not try to impress me or yourself. Writing is like a sport—you do it well when you are relaxed.
In other words, the best papers speak in a way that’s clear but also malleable and nuanced…
Introduction. Forget generalities! Go straight for the jugular. Just tell me what your argument is and then move on. In lots of cases, even the single lone thesis sentence makes a perfect introduction for a five-page paper.
Conclusion. The conclusion is where we go from the particular to the general by, for example, articulating the possible implications of the argument.
Sentence structure. My saying your style should be simple, does not mean you should write short sentences consisting only of main clauses. Rather, your syntax needs to manifest the dependence of one clause upon another, thereby helping to advance your argument. A causal connection (“because,” “since”) or a concessive one (“although,” “however”) is always better than an “and.”
Same for paragraphs.  Usually, each of your paragraphs should have a main sentence and supporting sentences, i.e. each paragraph in an argument paper is supposed to contribute to the argument.
Quotations. A short prose quote goes into the paragraph, a longer one goes outside it and gets indented.
Editing. Print out your paper and re-read it with a pencil in hand. Try to let some time pass between writing it and editing it, or at least do something that takes your mind off it between the two processes: for example, go running. To edit a paper you need to read it as if you are not the person who wrote it. You need to see it with the eyes of somebody who does not already know what you mean—or even what you’re talking about. Reading it out loud often helps, especially if you are reading it out loud to somebody else.
Do not submit papers that you have not printed out and gone over beforehand! I will take off points for messiness, lack of clarity, bad grammar, bad spelling, improper documentation, etc.

conversation between Emma

Narrative Technique in Particular Passage and Another Passage | conversation between Emma

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