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Research Assignment

RESEARCH ASSIGNMENT ENGLISH 2323 Daigle The research paper should be at least 1000 words and may be longer. It counts 20% of your grade in the course. You must follow the assignment exactly. You must use at least four sources in the paper. (This includes the story, novel, or play itself.) The works cited list must be in MLA format. Use www.easybib.com to help you with formatting, or send me a message. You will find several examples at the end of this file. You must follow these directions very carefully. 1. Choose one of the following stories, novels, or plays for your research paper. You may wish to read the introduction to the author and then to read the first few paragraphs of the story, novel, or play to help you make your choice. I suggest that you read your primary source (the story, novel, or play) before looking for commentaries (secondary sources), since you'll want to experience it as literature with all its interesting details and surprises first. Once you have made your choice, read carefully and take notes, jotting down any questions that occur to you as you read. These questions will be part of your research paper. From The Victorian Age (Volume E) Robert Louis Stevenson, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1677) Bernard Shaw, Mrs. Warren's Profession (1780) Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Speckled Band (1830) Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest (1733) From the Twentieth Century and After (Volume F) Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness (1951) Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway (2155) James Joyce, The Dead (2282) D. H. Lawrence, Odour of Chrysanthemums (2483) Katherine Mansfield, The Daughters of the Late Colonel (2568) or The Garden Party (2581) Doris Lessing, To Room Nineteen (2759) ________________________________________ Preparing to Write the Essay 2. Find at least three commentaries (articles, interviews, overviews, critical essays, etc.) about the story, novel, or play and take notes or highlight the parts that help in your understanding. You should use at least two substantial quotations from each commentary in your paper. I encourage you to use more than three commentaries (sources). Keep in mind that your research should focus on the literature itself, not on the author, though you may find articles in which the author (writer of the primary source) discusses the story, novel, or play, or you may find that the author's own life is relevant to the story in a very specific way. The primary source (the story, novel, or play) does not count as one of the three commentaries (secondary sources). This means that you will have at least four sources listed in your works cited list. Don't use: • No internet (or print) sources that are "notes" or "summaries" of the primary source (CliffsNotes, Endnotes, Classicnotes, Booknotes, Sparknotes, Novelguide.com, etc (Anything with lots of advertisements should be avoided.) Even though Masterplots appears in Literature Reference Center, you should not use it, since it is mostly summary. • No student papers or free essays from websites like 1234helpme.com, freeessays.tv, gradesaver.com, sunflower.singnet.com, cbronte.com, bookrags, planetpapers.com, antiessays.com, directessays.com, academon.com, echeat.com, study.com--I'm truly amazed at how many websites like this exist! (These papers are often already plagiarized, or they are written by high school students with no real evidence for their views.) • No encyclopedias, especially Wikipedia, which is a good general reference but not always reliable, especially not as literary criticism. • No dictionaries--definitions of words aren't commentaries (though it's good to look up words, of course). • No unsigned internet articles • No conversations with friends about the primary source as one of your commentaries (though it's a good idea to discuss the work with anyone who is interested) Use: • Books (biographies of the author, compilations of critical essays, critical studies of the story, novel or play) • HCCS databases (See below for how to access databases from home. When you log in to the library, you will see a link for databases A to Z. Gale literature resources are now under “A” for Artemis. (This is a recent change.) Here’s a link to Artemis: http://0-go.galegroup.com.librus.hccs.edu/ps/dispBasicSearch.do?userGroupName=txshracd2512&prodId=GLS You will also see it on the HCCS library website, of course. http://library.hccs.edu/home • Movies or documentaries that relate directly to the primary source (You must discuss the source in the paper, not just mention it. Normally, this would include a comparison between the written work and the movie or documentary.) • Reliable websites (with authors listed) • Websites with .org, .gov., .edu (unless the .edu is a student paper) • Interviews with experts on the topic of your paper (perhaps an English professor or an expert on British history) ________________________________________ ACCESSING DATABASES FROM HOME All HCCS students are entitled to use the college databases while enrolled in Houston Community College. Here is how to access the databases from home: Log in to Student System, open the menu on the left titled Self Service and click on the link to Student Center. Once you've done this, scroll down to the field titled Personal Information and click on the link to Demographic Data. Your library barcode is the third number listed on this page, below your W-number. You can also get a physical student ID card, which has your library barcode on the back. You can find more information about getting your student ID card under Step 5: Obtain your photo ID. ________________________________________ Writing the Paper You must follow these instructions exactly. The paper is not a thesis-controlled essay. It is an exploration of sources. 3. In your paper, begin with a brief introduction in which you tell why you chose this story, novel, or play, what questions you had after reading, how you found your sources, and which sources were most useful. This introduction is required. You should use "I" in the introduction since you are discussing your personal response. 4. Include a very brief discussion of the primary source itself, including quotations that you think are important. This part of the paper shouldn't be more than a paragraph or two. (I emphasize "brief" because in the past, some students have discussed the story, novel, or play for half the paper and responded very briefly to the commentaries.) This part of the paper should be similar to a reading response. 5. Then discuss each commentary (source) in a full paragraph for each source, letting the reader know what the critics have said about your story, novel, or play. Include at least two substantial quotations from the source and your responses to what the critics say. You will need to give the name and author of each commentary, but don't use these as headings. I prefer that you organize your essay by discussing the sources one by one in separate paragraphs. You may, of course, make connections among the sources to make the essay flow nicely. I'm interested in what you find out about the literature through research. Please follow punctuation rules for quotations. Quotation marks don't substitute for other marks of punctuation (commas, colons, semicolons, periods). Here is a website that should be useful: Punctuating Quotations in Essays 6. Do not put the author's name in parentheses after a quotation. You should introduce your source at the beginning of the paragraph by including the author's name and the title of the source in your topic sentence for the paragraph. You may, of course, mention the author's name again in a sentence if you wish, but don't put the author's name in parentheses. Use sentences like, "Achebe goes on to say that. . . ." or "he also says that. . . ." 7. At the end of the paper, summarize what you have learned by doing the research, perhaps letting your reader know which commentaries answered the questions you had, which gave you additional insight, which were difficult to understand, etc. Again, you should use "I." 8. Include a Works Cited list at the end of the paper, listing all sources alphabetically, using MLA documentation format. Be sure to list your primary source (the story, play, or novel you are writing about). You must follow MLA format exactly. If you need help, let me know. You may wish to pick up a handout at the library or consult the following website: MLA Format. The Purdue On-line Writing Lab (OWL) is also very useful. I found that just typing in what I wanted to format gave the best results. For example, I wanted to cite an interview with Chinua Achebe, so I just typed in "MLA format for interview." Several excellent choices popped up. AS ALWAYS, LET ME KNOW IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS! I'm including some examples of sources with in-text citations and works cited entries below. I hope that these are helpful. Below you will find documentation guidelines for in-text documentation and works cited entries. You must follow these guidelines. If you use the HCCS databases, you will find the MLA works cited entry at the end of the source. All you will need to do is to copy, paste, and format. ________________________________________ EXAMPLES OF IN-TEXT DOCUMENTATION AND WORKS CITED ENTRIES FOR ENGLISH 2323 RESEARCH PAPER I am including a few examples of how to manage in-text documentation in MLA format. As you will see, you should not put the author's name in parentheses as you may have been taught. It's much better to include an introduction to the source by mentioning the author's name and the name of the commentary (source). The examples are in alphabetical order. You will notice that all of them are related to the research topics—the stories, novels, and plays that I assigned. ________________________________________ In-text documentation of an interview in an online journal: In Chinua Achebe's essay, "An Image of Africa: Racism in Conrad's Heart of Darkness," written in 1977, he criticizes Conrad's depictions of Africans in the novel, which was published in 1899. Achebe's response during an interview in the Paris Review almost twenty years after he wrote his essay criticizing Conrad shows that he doesn't think that things have changed much. In this interview with Jerome Brooks, Achebe shows why he believes this. INTERVIEWER . . . But your most trenchant essay on the colonial novel is your subsequent essay on Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. I wonder what you think is the image of Africa today in the Western mind. ACHEBE I think it’s changed a bit. But not very much in its essentials. When I think of the standing, the importance and the erudition of all these people who see nothing about racism in Heart of Darkness, I’m convinced that we must really be living in different worlds. . . . Look at the way this man handles Africans. Do you recognize humanity there? People will tell you he was opposed to imperialism. But it’s not enough to say, I’m opposed to imperialism. Or, I’m opposed to these people—these poor people—being treated like this. Especially since he goes on straight away to call them “dogs standing on their hind legs.” That kind of thing. Animal imagery throughout. He didn’t see anything wrong with it. So we must live in different worlds. Until these two worlds come together we will have a lot of trouble. Note: The spaced periods (ellipsis) show that some sentences have been omitted. Works Cited entry: Achebe, Chinua. Interview by Jerome Brooks. "Chinua Achebe: The Art of Fiction No. 139." The Paris Review. 1994. Web. June 6, 2015. http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/1720/the-art-of-fiction-no-139-chinua-achebe Including the web address is optional in this case. ________________________________________ In-text citation for a scholarly internet article: Colleen Burke, in a scholarly article on the internet, describes Heart of Darkness as a work that “descends into the unknowable darkness at the heart of Africa, taking its narrator, Marlow, on an underworld journey of individuation, a modern odyssey toward the center of the Self and the center of the Earth.” Works Cited entry: Burke, Colleen. “Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness: A Metaphor of Jungian Psychology.” 21 March 1998. Web. 17 Oct 2009. In-text documentation of an essay from online journal: Sebnem Kaya, in "Laura's Lessons in Katherine Mansfield's 'The Garden Party'," gives her views of the significance of Laura's experience: Katherine Mansfield (1888-1923) may have defined the short story she penned as merely “a cry” against corruption (qtd in Wattie,1989, p.149), but “The Garden Party” (1922) is in truth a pointed social satire, or, if the term is appropriate, a “short story à thèse” designed to refute the Victorian socio-moral values which figured prominently in Britain for the most part of the nineteenth century and managed to maintain their validity during the early twentieth century. It does so through an emphasis on an upper-class girl child's education. Works Cited entry: Kaya, Sebnem. "Laura's Lessons in Katherine Mansfield's 'The Garden Party'." American International Journal of Contemporary Research. Vol. 1 No. 2; September 2011. 54. Web. June 6, 2015. http://www.aijcrnet.com/journals/Vol_1_No_2_September_2011/8.pdf Sometimes it's important to include the web link, especially if the source is a pdf. ________________________________________ In-text documentation for your primary source (the story, novel, or play you are writing about): For your primary source (the story, novel, or play you are researching), use page numbers only as long as it's clear that you are quoting from the primary source (and as long as you have included the author and title in the introduction to the borrowed material). The full citation will appear in the Works Cited list. Early in "Odour of Chrysantemums," D. H. Lawrence describes Elizabeth Bates in a way that presages the outcome of the story. Notice that he doesn't give her name early in the story but calls her only "woman" or "the woman." One must read several pages to discover her name. She was a tall woman of imperious mien, handsome, with definite black eye-brows. Her smooth black hair was parted exactly. For a few moments she stood steadily watching the miners as they passed along the railway: then she turned towards the brook course. Her face was calm and set, her mouth was closed with disillusionment. (2483) Works Cited entry: Lawrence, D. H. "Odour of Chrysanthemums." The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Vol. F. Eds. Stephen Greenblatt, et al. 9th ed. 2483-96. New York, 2012. Print. (Note: To find essays from Literature Resource Center, you will use “Artemis Literary Resources.” This is a compilation of all of the Gale resources/databases about literature. The works cited entry includes the specific database. Again, the MLA works cited entry appears at the end of the commentary. You may just copy and paste it.) In-text documentation for an essay in Literature Resource Center (database): In her overview of Mrs. Warren's Profession, Madonne Miner emphasizes the importance of the word "profession." Throughout Shaw's play, characters simultaneously reveal/conceal themselves, making pretense of profession. This repeated dynamic necessitates a re-assessment of the play's final, seemingly positive act of profession: Vivie's declaration that she will pursue her work. Works Cited entry: Miner, Madonne M. "Mrs. Warren's Profession: Overview." Reference Guide to English Literature. Ed. D. L. Kirkpatrick. 2nd ed. Chicago: St. James Press, 1991. Literature Resource Center. Web. 7 June 2015. Do not include the web address for a source from a database. As mentioned above, the correct works cited entry appears at the end of the source.________________________________________ In-text documentation of an essay from Literature Resource Center (database) Debrah Raschke, in "Framed Identity: Finding Lucy in 'Death by Landscape,' " says that [m]ost previous readings of Atwood's tale have insightfully focused on how representations of nature are linked to a labyrinthine image of Canadian cultural identity--one that is colonized and feminine and another that is imperialistic and masculine. Works Cited entry (copied from the end of the source in Literature Resource Center): Raschke, Debrah. "Framed identity: finding Lucy in Atwood's 'Death by Landscape'." Mosaic [Winnipeg] 45.3 (2012): 65. Literature Resource Center. Web. 6 June 2015. Note: It is not necessary to include the very long web address for entries from databases. ________________________________________ In-text documentation of an essay from an online journal: Shubb Singh and Subho Chakrabarti explain Robert Louis Stevenson's concept of duality very well in "A Study in Dualism: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde." Thus, Stevenson creates in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, two equipotent, coexistent, and eternally opposed components that make up a “normal” individual. Here, good and evil are not related but are two independent entities, individuals even, different in mental and physical attributes and constantly at war with each other. Evil now does not require the existence of good to justify itself but it exists simply as itself, depicted as being the more powerful, the more enjoyable of the two, and in the end ultimately it is the one that leads to Dr. Jekyll's downfall and death. Works Cited entry: Singh, Shubh M., and Subho Chakrabarti. "A Study in Dualism: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde." Indian Journal of Psychiatry. Medknow Publications, n.d. Web. 06 June 2015. ________________________________________ In-text documentation for a print book: In Ian Watt's excellent biography, Conrad in the Nineteenth Century, Watt says that “[n]either Conrad nor Marlow had any faith in the rationalisations [of the Victorian ethic], but they adhered to many of the values” (148). Works Cited entry: Watt, Ian. Conrad in the Nineteenth Century. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1979. Print. Notice that I did not repeat the author's name in parentheses. ________________________________________ In-text documentation of a quotation from an essay in an anthology: In an essay called "The Decay of Lying," Oscar Wilde explains why he believes that life imitates art. The third doctrine is that Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life. This results not merely from Life's imitative instinct, but from the fact that the self-conscious aim of Life is to find expression, and that Art offers it certain beautiful forms through which it may realize that energy. It is a theory that has never been put forward before, but it is extremely fruitful, and throws an entirely new light upon the history of Art. (41) Notice that I did not repeat "Wilde" at the end of the quotation. This is unnecessary because I mentioned his name when I introduced the quotation. Works Cited entry: Wilde, Oscar. "The Decay of Lying." Literature and Culture at the Fin de Siècle. Ed. Talia Schaeffer. New York: Pierson Longman, 2007. 19-41. Print. Wilde's essay is part of a collection of essays, stories, and poems. Be sure to cite the name of the author of a source first, not the editor of the book that it appears in. This is to give credit to the person who actually wrote the quoted words. You should also include the inclusive page numbers for the essay or story. ________________________________________ Sample Works Cited List: I am including the following sample works cited list so that you will know what your list should look like. Notice that the list is alphabetized by the author's last name, that it is double-spaced, and that all lines after the first are indented five spaces. Also notice that in MLA format, the list is called Works Cited, not References, or Bibliography. Works Cited Achebe, Chinua. Interview by Jerome Brooks. "Chinua Achebe: The Art of Fiction No. 139." The Paris Review. 1994. Web. 6 June 2015. Burke, Colleen. “Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness: A Metaphor of Jungian Psychology.” 21 March 1998. Web. 10 June 2015. Kaya, Sebnem. "Laura's Lessons in Katherine Mansfield's 'The Garden Party'." American International Journal of Contemporary Research. Vol. 1 No. 2; September 2011. 54. Web. 6 June 2015. http://www.aijcrnet.com/journals/Vol_1_No_2_September_2011/8.pdf Lawrence, D. H. "Odour of Chrysanthemums." The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Vol. F. Eds. Stephen Greenblatt, et al. 9th ed. New York, 2012. Print. Miner, Madonne M. "Mrs. Warren's Profession: Overview." Reference Guide to English Literature. Ed. D. L. Kirkpatrick. 2nd ed. Chicago: St. James Press, 1991. Literature Resource Center. Web. 07 June 2015. Raschke, Debrah. "Framed identity: finding Lucy in Atwood's 'Death by Landscape'." Mosaic [Winnipeg] 45.3 (2012): 65. Literature Resource Center. Web. 6 June 2015. Singh, Shubh M., and Subho Chakrabarti. "A Study in Dualism: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde." Indian Journal of Psychiatry. Medknow Publications, n.d. Web. 06 June 2015. Watt, Ian. Conrad in the Nineteenth Century. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1979. Print. Wilde, Oscar. "The Decay of Lying." Literature and Culture at the Fin de Siècle. Ed. Talia Schaeffer. New York: Pierson Longman, 2007. 19-41. Print.
RESEARCH ASSIGNMENT ENGLISH 2323 Daigle The research paper should be at least 1000 words and may be longer. It counts 20% of your grade in the course. You must follow the assignment exactly. You must use at least four sources in the paper. (This includes the story, novel, or play itself.) The works cited list must be in MLA format. Use www.easybib.
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