An essay that examines a story not on this list will be rejected. And do not plagiarize!

Write a short essay (minimum 750 words) that defends a thesis you developed through a close critical reading/analysis of one of the following works:

Updike’s “A&P,”

Walker’s “Everyday Use,”

Chopin’s “The Storm,”

Faulkner’s “Barn Burning,”

Write the essay examining how a vivid central character (like Sammy in “A&P,” Maggie in “Everyday Use,” or the narrator of “Cathedral” e.g.) evidences significant change or development in the story. You may not write on any story not on this list.

An essay that examines a story not on this list will be rejected. And do not plagiarize!

The “critical response” essay relies on textual support from the primary text (secondary sources are not required) – not plot summary to develop the student’s argument. Do not confuse “critical analysis” with “plot summary;” the goal is to develop, sustain, and advance a thesis based on a critique of the primary text. Your thesis should explicitly state how you see the character change and what that change means to you.

A sample thesis might be: ‘Although Sartoris Snopes grew up believing that his father Abner was honorable, Sarty slowly and then abruptly recognizes fact that Abner respects neither men nor laws nor justice and irreversibly rejects his father’s nihilism.’

Or, ‘Jing-mei Woo learns that her mother’s Chinese heritage is not an innate monster or mutation waiting to be let go in her body, but something honorable and bigger than herself.’

Thank You!

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