Kelly J. Mays’s Norton Introduction to Literature,

Eng 125

Prof Bever

Final Exam


Choose ONE of the following topics and write a four- to five-page essay (double-spaced, Times New Roman, 1-inch margins) using MLA style formatting and citations. You should quote from the source texts as well as at least three other scholarly sources. These can include, but should not be limited to, the critical readings/essays/excerpts from the Norton anthology. Explore what is available through the NOVA and/or public library as well as the databases that NOVA gives you access to, as there is a wealth of excellent material in those places as well.


1) Write an essay on the topic of Hamlet’s madness; which (if any) of his actions are due to true madness and which are merely an “antic disposition” meant to mislead others?


2) Read William Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience. How do the poems in each embody the respective nature of innocence and experience? Note the parallels that exist between the two sets of poems and discuss how they interact with/build on/contrast one another.


3) Compare Susan Glaspell’s short story, “A Jury of her Peers,” to her play, “Trifles.” While both deal with the same subject matter and situation, what differences do you notice between the two, and what significance do those differences have? How do the different genres approach the moral questions at the heart of the story?


4) Using at least four of the works (stories, poems, plays) from anywhere in the anthology discuss the differing approaches to and portrayals of warfare across different time periods and from different perspectives.

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