research on literary era
Your research paper should be on a literary time period. Choose a time period that moves you. Identify two to three writers from that time period that have strongly influenced that literary era. You also need a researchable question? What do you want to know or learn? Research each writers phillosophy and his/her works. You will need to get evidence to support your theme from research data bases. Read what critics have to say about the era and the authors.
Keys to Remember:
(A): Center your title.
(B): If you decide to use a quotation longer than two lines, you should indent the quote, but make sure that you type it EXACTLY as it appears in the book, with line breaks, capital letters, etc. Please notice that this quotation, which comes at the very beginning of the essay, does not have a signal sentence. At the very beginning of an essay is the ONLY time you can get away without including a signal sentence! This kind of quotation is known as an ?epigram? ? I like to begin with a quotation myself, because it gives me something concrete to discuss in my intro!
(C): When you quote from a literary text, include the act, scene, line numbers, and or page number in your parenthetical citation. In the example above, (3.3.98-100) tells me that the quotation is found in Act 3, scene 3, lines 98-100. Whatever you do, don?t cite the page numbers when you?re working with a play or poetry!
(D): Here is an example of a signal sentence. I?ve named the author of my secondary source, Anthony Barthelmy, and I?ve given the page number where the brief quotation is found. That?s all that?s necessary! If you wanted to find out the name of the book, etc., you would flip to my Works Cited page, look under the author?s name, and find the complete bibliographic information. In the body of the paper, though, all you need the author?s name (or whatever you would need to find the source in the Works Cited page; if there?s no author for the source, you would probably use the title and alphabetize it that way) and the page number. Don?t footnote! (Parenthetical citations are easier ? which is why the MLA followed the APA and changed the rules about 12 years ago and got rid of footnotes, except when you?re giving more information!)
(E): In case you?re wondering, a question really can?t substitute for a thesis statement. I wrote this sample essay several years ago, for a different kind of research assignment. Instead of writing another sample, I?m asking you to keep in mind that you should have an ?answer? to your question here; that?s what a thesis statement is!
(F): Here are two more examples of signal sentences, one where I summarize the gist of the source?s argument, and another simple one (Dauber writes:) which sets up the quotation that follows. Don?t forget to use signal sentences!
(G): This is a long quotation from my source; since it?s longer than a few lines, I?ve indented it. Notice that I haven?t used quotation marks here. When you indent a quotation, it?s understood that you are presenting a quotation (while quotations in the body of your paper always need quotation marks to make clear that they are a quotation). The parenthetical citation comes at the end, with the page number. Because I?ve named the author in my signal sentence, I don?t need to name the author in the citation. (If, instead of ?Dauber writes,? I had written, ?One critic writes,? I would need to name the author and the page number in my citation (Dauber 131).
(H): Here, I?ve given you an example of a quotation from the play in the body of the essay. Since it?s shorter than three lines, I haven?t indented it. But do notice that I have used a slash (/) to denote the line break, and that I have given the Act.Scene.Lines in my citation.
You will find a short but useful section in our text to help you with your Works Cited page, which comes at the end of your essay. Besides giving you the format for entries on your Works Cited page, the book also contains examples of signal sentences to help you present material from your secondary sources. If you use an online database (The Literature Resource Center) or internet sources, you?ll be especially interested in pages 1483-84. Notice that if the source has been originally published in print, you need to include that information first in the appropriate format (whatever the original source was ? book, journal article, whatever); then, you include the electronic information. If you?re using a database, all you would need is the name of the database (The Literature Resource Center), and the address of the library?s homepage. If you?re using an internet source, get as much of the information as you can from the list on page 1483. Crucial: 6 and 7, the date of your visit to the page, and the address of the source. Some sites do not have a name or editor, etc., so do your best with those, but you MUST have the date of your visit and the address?
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