I. How to begin: Read the class information on determining narrative themes or
I. How to begin: Read the class information on determining narrative themes or
I. How to begin: Read the class information on determining narrative themes or watch the video. II. How to get started writing: When reading the story and preparing to write E2, make a list of objects, sounds, touch sensations, and odors or tastes in the page margins or on a separate page. Using Mark Twain’s “Chapter 4-6” as an example, what notes could be added to the list? Objects (people): Mississippi river, gracefully curved steamship, Hannibal, boat pilot, Haley's Comet Sounds: singing, screams, silence and voices, whirring and rattling sounds Touching Sensations: hot summer days, cool river water, wind through the trees Odors and Food Tastes: ship men, river smells and lush greenery, oil burning ship engines III. Next, choose one or two details in the story and argue as your thesis what those symbols suggest as a theme. For example, what does the young cub pilot's ambition symbolize? (A symbol is language that connects something to something else that is beyond it, enlarging its contexts so that it stands for an idea or concept outside of its own nature.) The boy's ambition symbolizes, like the raw American wilderness, the theme of territorial expansion as well many other possibilities. It's important to understand how narrative details symbolically enlarge thematic meanings. Anyone familiar with cowboy movies will recall the wild west, disguised as lawless and chaotic, represented the necessary evils of wayward young men. In this way, Twain’s story rewrites the American story of unlimited progress based on the ambitions of young boys who took huge risks growing up. IV. A clear understanding of narrative details--objects, sounds, sensations, and smells--gives readers a good sense of connective themes. The comparisons between the innocent boy pilot and evil men he encounters (via the boat pilot training and Haley's Comet) bring depth and resonance to Twain’s story. Readers learn that Twain's life is caught up in his identity as the writer Samuel Clemons; the author has a new twist on the story of young man in America because he associates his new fame and celebrity as essential to defining a literary beginning in the wilderness. V. A mythic, allegorical, universal ideas, and themes are found in narrative form (events ordered into a beginning, middle, and end) and represent social or cultural patterns or explain natural events through the use of the supernatural and the extraordinary. To prepare for writing Essay 2, think about how the biblical story of Eden relates to Twain's novel. Certain symbols create themes and new myths in the story of young American men. Remember, I am discussing an example: you choose your thematic topic based on one of the readings listed for this assignment. VI. Now, begin: choose a story, settle on one or better two sensory details, and argue that the theme (of your choosing) reflects in those details. Write a 2 page draft in which you identify your sensory details and explain how they work together to build a theme or reveal a universal theme. In your first draft subject heading, type your theme in one word. The essay must include one or two lines from the story (KISS--keep it short and simple--one quote per paragraph) to prove your opinions. Make your Essay 2 draft 1 available to a peer editor quickly and reply (write 10-20 sentences) in response to a classmate’s draft; perhaps ask a question or make a comparison to your own writing. Submit an E2 draft in the Discussion forum in two weeks on Sunday. Develop the draft into an 800 word analytical essay before the final due date. As with all the writing for this class, students cite quotes from the story as evidence to argue opinions or ideas, using MLA format. An argumentative thesis statement is also required in the first paragraph and the essay of 800 words must be typed in 12 point Times New Roman font with 1" margins all around the pages. The Turnitin % matching in the Dropbox cannot exceed 15%. There is a no tolerance policy for plagiarism.

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