Assignment 3


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Assignment: You will write three brief “essays” on three of the stories we have read so far this semester.  [These are not traditional essays, since you will essentially be answering numbered questions with similarly numbered responses.]
In the Norton Anthology on pages xxiii-xxiv, you will see “General Questions” gathered under the headings of 1. Exposition and Setting, 2. Plot, 3. Character and Conflict, and 4. Point of View and Person of Narration (the numbering is mine).  You will choose three out of these four to use as the bases for your essays.  (Do NOT use the Theme, Description, or Mode categories.)
Here is the list of stories from which you will choose to match up to the categories:  Poe, “The Cask of Amontillado,” Fitzgerald, “Babylon Revisited,” Mukherjee, “The Management of Grief,” Bierce, “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge,” and/or Keyes, “Flowers for Algernon.
Example:  Let’s say for the first of my three essays I chose to write about Plot and Mukherjee’s story, “The Management of Grief.”  [PLEASE don’t choose this, since I am using this as an example.]  I begin by looking at Question #1 under Plot. which asks, “Do the meaning and emotional impact of this story heavily depend on the working out of the plot?  Or is the plot–if it is noticeable at all–subordinate to the other elements?”  I begin my essay in this way:  1. “Bharati Mukherjee’s “The Management of Grief” focuses more heavily on characterization than on plot, so the emotional impact of the story depends more heavily on the thoughts of the protagonist, Mrs. Bhave, than on any actions or movements in the plot.  I would then continue to answer the next question in Plot, which is “To what extent does the action of the plot arise from the kinds of characters depicted in the story and their relation to each other?”  For this question, I would certainly discuss how Judith Templeton’s presence drives the plot, among other characters.  I would then proceed to answer the rest of the questions (in order) in Plot.   Number your answers to match the category questions.

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Hint:  Choose your three stories and match them up to three categories first (or, choose categories and match them to stories), before you start doing ANY writing.  You do not want to struggle through an essay only to decide that story you chose would have worked better with a different category. 
NOTE:  If a question does not apply to your story because of a different narrative point of view, you can skip that question. 
You may and should use quotations from the stories to support your assertions.  Please provide page numbers for any quotations.
As a reminder:  the purpose of the writing assignments is for me to assess how much and how well you are learning the material of the course.  Feel free to refer to any of the lessons of the course while you work on this assignment.  REFRAIN FROM USING THE INTERNET or doing any other kind of outside searching.  The goal of the assignment is to assess what you have learned–not to see how well you can google.


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