comparative literature writing essay

I’m stuck on a Writing question and need an explanation.

The midterm project is a paper of three or more full pages which thoughtfully and critically analyzes the context and content of an outside text in relation to a critical aspect, controversy, or “crime” of art which we have discussed in class.

  • Papers less than three full pages will be marked as incomplete.
  • The PowerPoint for the Midterm Project in the Course Documents module has a list of themes of topics which we have explored in class.

An outside text can be a literary, visual, or audio text. It can be a novel, book of poems, comic book, art book, film, television show, artistic performance or a sculpture, painting, or other fine art. The text could also be a song, music video, or music album. This list is not exhaustive. An outside text is not a text which we have previously discussed in class.

Midterm Project Specifications:

  • Your project will be three or more full pages, formatted in Times New Roman (or another variable-width serif font), double-spaced, and have 1 inch margins.
  • Your project will use MLA citations and cite any outside texts in a Works Cited page at the end of the paper.
  • Your project will be submitted on Canvas as a Word or PDF document.
  • Your midterm project is due by the beginning of class on Tuesday, November 5th.

What a Satisfactory Project Will Do:

  • Your project will successfully analyze a primary outside text in relation to one or more relevant ideas, themes, or topics from our class. This analysis will be supported by relevant textual details and a close reading of your primary outside text (reading of a poem, chapter, movie scene, excerpts from a song or music video, and so on) and by relevant contextual details (historical or social context, publication, performance, or release history, public reception, etc)
  • You can bring in texts and materials which we have discussed in class which help you establish your topic and discuss your outside text , but you do not need to closely read them or analyze them. The focus of this paper should be on your primary outside text.
  • You are welcome, but are not required, to bring in any secondary outside texts that help you discuss the reception of your text, contextualizes within larger social or cultural discourse, or otherwise establishes what you see as the text challenging something in our society or our aesthetic categories in a way which connects to the themes we’ve talked about in our class.
  • All outside texts, both primary and secondary, must be cited at the end of the paper in a Works Cited page.

What an Above Satisfactory Paper Will Do:

In addition to all of the above, an above satisfactory paper will not only successfully analyze how the primary text relates to one or more ideas, themes, or topics from our class, but will also go beyond this to complicate, challenge, or reassess our understanding of that topic or theme.