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The Unrepentant Renaissance From Petrarch to Shakespeare to Milton Essay

The Unrepentant Renaissance From Petrarch to Shakespeare to Milton Essay

Question Description

For this assignment, you will have two options. You can write either an essay that is a close reading of one or two of the works from the textbooks for the course, or you can work on a research project on a work. The close reading will include a thorough analysis of one or more of the literary devices that will help you focus in on one original interpretation of the work. For the research project, you would need to focus on one main idea in regards to an original interpretation of the work. Focus on solving an issue you have found within the text and solve the issue through a historically based research project focusing on the context of the work in connection to the literary movement and the genre. This assignment will require a critical close reading and an analytical interpretation of a symbolic meaning in the work.

The literary analysis option:

A close reading of the work will focus in on specific literary elements that are used to define a symbolic meaning within the work. These literary devices include, but are not limited to, specific aspects within the plot, mood, tone, themes, style, and historical context, characterization, distinguishing components that define the genre, imagery, themes, and motifs. When writing about the plot, you can focus on suspense in the plot, how the characters contribute to the plot, and use this information to solve a specific problem within the plot. What could the characters have done to change the ending, or the circumstances? How do their roles define this interpretation of the plot from your point of view? When analyzing characterization, you can discuss what literary elements used in the work captures the traits of the epic hero. What defines the protagonist within the context of the genre and the historical elements within the plot? How does the work compare and contrast to another in the genre? Compare and contrast works that are similar, yet differ in certain ways. When analyzing the imagery in the text, focus on symbolic metaphors, allegories, personifications, and similes that contribute to defining an original interpretation of the plot. When analyzing the story based on themes, look for specific patterns in the plot, as well as the stylistic devices that the author uses to define the tone and mood in the language they use to define an interpretation of the work. Since there are countless interpretations, the goal for the assignment is for you to find your own interpretation. For a textual analysis, you will need to have your own original claims that argue a point you are making with specific quotes from the work that supports your interpretation. You will only need the source or sources that are used for the close reading.

Research project option:

For the research project option, you will need to focus on an interpretation of the work based on historical components of the work. You can focus in on an issue within the genre or the literary movement that the work was written in and analyze the work with your own point of view. Solve an issue within the plot with your own point of view by focusing in on the specific stylistic devices the author uses. You will need to form your own claims that you will use to argue your own point of view. You will need to use quotes and paraphrases that are directly from the work. You will also need to synthesize in outside sources from peer reviewed journals and other scholarly works that will be used to prove your point. You will need to include persuasive techniques, such as rhetorical modes of logical reasoning that will be used to prove your point after making a claim. You will need evidence that involves specific examples, as well as logical, emotional, and ethical appeals to prove your point and form your claims. You can also look into different schools of thought found in literary criticism, such as deconstruction criticism, new historical criticism, gender criticism, formalist criticism, structuralism, moral criticism, feminist criticism, and reader-response criticism. You will need at least four to five scholarly sources to support your own claims regarding how you can interpret the text.

The literary analysis option:

You will need to write a detailed close reading of the work that is at least five to six pages of an analysis. You will need an introduction that includes an intriguing topic sentence that presents an overview of the purpose of the paper, the background context of the work, the issue you will be focusing in on, and your answer to your question about a specific aspect of the work that poses a debatable interpretation that you will respond to with your own idea in a clear thesis statement. Each paragraph will be focused in on one main idea that you will be arguing to prove how you can interpret the text from your point of view.

The body paragraphs will begin with a transition sentence that connects that main idea in the last paragraph to the present. Then, you will present your own original claim based on rhetorical modes of analyzing and classical logic. You will, then, use a quote or a paraphrase from the text that will be used to prove your point. You will, then, explain what the quote means and use rhetorical modes of analyzing to explain how it proves your point. You can use specific language from the quote itself to prove your point. Analyze the language the author uses to prove your point as to examine the style of the work. You will then repeat this cycle until you reach the conclusion. The conclusion sentence will explain how the paragraph proves your thesis. You will, then, document each quote in MLA format. Introduce the author and the work and cite with a parenthetical citation at the end of the sentence. For a poem, state the poem and the title when introducing the work, then cite the line number(s) in brackets at the end of the sentence. The citation is as follows: (line number). For plays, cite the act, the scene, and the line number as follows: (Act. scene. line). Always lead into the quote by stating which character is speaking and the context of what is going on in the plot. You will need at least six to seven sentences minimum per paragraph. Paragraphs that are half a page are acceptable, but they are not if they reach three-fourths of the page. Be as thorough as possible. You will need a works cited page in MLA format.

You will, then, have a conclusion paragraph that will explain how your paper proved your point in detail. How did you prove your point in each paragraph? Explain the purpose of your paper in a greater context. Call to action and explain how your analysis of the work can be used to solve societal, historical, or other issues that are important in our world. Present an overview of the values that are presented in your interpretation and why they are meaningful.

The research paper option:

For the research paper, you will need at least five to six pages of an analysis. You will need an introduction that includes an intriguing topic sentence that presents an overview of the purpose of the paper, the background context of the work, the issue you will be focusing in on, and your answer to your question about a specific aspect of the work that poses a debatable interpretation with your own idea in a clear thesis statement. Each paragraph will be focused in on one main idea that you will be arguing to prove how you can interpret the text from your point of view. Explain how the work can be interpreted form a school of thought within literary criticism. Apply a literary critic’s theoretical approach to your own interpretation of the work. You can also choose to explain how a debate among scholars regarding a specific issue within the interpretation of the meaning of the text can be solved with your own original take on the work.

Each paragraph will be focused in on one main idea that you will be arguing to prove how you can interpret the text from your point of view. The body paragraphs will begin with a transition sentence that connects that main idea in the last paragraph to the present. Then, you will present your own original claim based on rhetorical modes of analyzing and classical logic. You will, then, use a quote or a paraphrase from the text itself and/or a scholarly source that will be used to prove your point. You will need to have quotes from the text and scholarly sources throughout each paragraph. Explain the debate among scholars involving a specific quote or section in the work. You will, then, explain what the quote means and use rhetorical modes of analyzing to explain how it proves your point. You can use specific language from the quote itself to prove your point. Analyze the language the author uses to prove your point as to examine the style of the work. You will then repeat this cycle until you reach the conclusion. The conclusion sentence will explain how the paragraph proves your thesis. You will document each quote in MLA format. Introduce the author and the work and cite with a parenthetical citation at the end of the sentence, as follows: (author, pg). Always lead into the quote by stating which character is speaking and the context of what is going on in the plot, or by stating the author’s name and the title of the work. You will need at least six to seven sentences minimum per paragraph. Paragraphs that are half a page are acceptable, but not if they reach three-fourths of the page. Be as thorough as possible. You will need a works cited page in MLA format.

You will then have a conclusion paragraph that will explain how your paper proved your point in detail. Explain the purpose of your paper in a greater context. How did each paragraph prove your point? Call to action and explain how your analysis of the work can be used to solve societal, historical, or other issues that are important in our world. Present an overview of the values that are presented in your interpretation and why they are meaningful.

Always write using formal diction. Address the audience, knowing that you have a specific purpose and goal you will achieve through your analysis. Use language that is appropriate for your audience. Define all of your terms. Present your claims as though they are known facts, since you are certain you can prove your point. Avoid any slang or jargon. Do not use the word “it.” Use specific language when you write. Do not use the first person. Think about your word choice in regards to the context of the topic. Be as descriptive as possible, while being as clear and concise as possible. All sentences should be complete, as there should be no fragments. Do not use run-on sentences. Vary your syntax between simple and complex sentences. All paragraphs and sentences should have ideas that connect together in a cohesive way. All paragraphs should be well developed and the ideas should be arranged in an organized way.

Choose one of the prompts that are described as follows:

1. Hamlet goes on a philosophical quest that Socrates’ emphasizes and this is what leads him to doubt in reason and any sentience in his own world for numerous reasons. This is what I went over last class. I also described how the play deconstructs the notion of the political view of the divine right of kings as Old King Hamlet’s divinity as the set ruler based on the wisdom he is given does not prevent him from being slain by Claudius. Focus on themes of corruption and justice in Hamlet. The questioning of universal truths is evident except the only one in the play is the fact it would end in tragedy, due to Hamlet’s philosophical quest. Write a paper can arguing that his plot was already preconceived to overthrow order, reason, and sentience in the world, or you can write a paper arguing that he was a victim to the corruption and was only seeking justice but became overcome with madness through his quest for truth. Focus on the theme of the tragedy being in the universal truth of the wisdom given to define the absolute truth of the divine right of kings that kept political order in the country of Denmark until Old King Hamlet was murdered.

2. Write a paper describing the role of the poetics in Petrarch’s love sonnets. Describe whether you believe that Petrarch refutes the notion of skepticism with his ability to use the arguments of the stoics against them regarding stoic determinism. Does his refutation of his fears with notions of hope justify the validity of his eternal love. Describe how immutable absolute truth in beauty and nature shown through his poetics describing Laura help him to transcend the transitory nature of time and arrive at absolute and universal truths through ethereal imagery. Describe his balance of the ethereal and eternal with the rational mind based on his deeply reflective contemplations of his life as he uses Laura to transcend time and space to defy the fears he conjures from his reflections on the transitory nature of life. Or write a paper that describes how Petrarch is a skeptic except for mere religious belief in his love for Laura as he wavers between fear and hope throughout the poems. Does his fears overpower his hopes and lend to future skeptical philosophies found later in the Enlightenment. Take a stance on how you interpret his poems. You can also write about Shakespeare’s immutable themes of beauty, nature, and the eternal nature of time, despite the transitory nature of life. You can write for his use of absolute truths through these ideals, or argue that he, like Petrarch, presents skepticism in his poems.

3. Argue a point of view on how to interpret Chaucer’s works based on a historical approach, analysis of individual characters, or an approach that analyzes the works as a whole using examples from the readings. Write a paper arguing whether Chaucer is satirizing the notion of absolutist identities and societal, political, and gender constructs cross-culturally in an ever changing world throughout history through his expression of such an emphasis on existentialist individuation through his atypical characters in the time period they are written that is defined by the theme of cultural relativism in the works. How does supernatural philosophies contribute to the meaning based of the narratives and the gender, cultural, and philosophical ideals that present challenges in the lives of the characters? How was Chaucer ahead of his time by focusing on the individual experience, which is found in a humanist Renaissance as he focuses on naturalist and humanist themes that strive to analyze the human condition while surpassing the mythical supernatural philosophies of his time based on alchemy, astrology, and mysticism? You can use this idea to write about whether he is expressing a satire of relativistic existentialism by providing absolutist moral answers within his seemingly ambiguous and controversially diverse atypical identities within their historical context ? Are the characters able to overcome the notion of stoic determinism and fate through free will shown by atypical or supernatural situations, events, and circumstances through their own ability to confront the idea of self-determinism based on their strong self-assertions of perceptions and values, or are their fates sealed through the emphasis on illusion surpassing their limitations as humans in understanding reality based on their own perceptions and values?


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