Literary Analysis On “The Story Of An Hour” By Kate Chopin


Your goal here is to use the thesis model you were given to analyze a piece of literature (any poem, short story, or our novel) for a commentary on society. You will prove in your essay that the text is communicating that commentary through literary terms that you found. Your paragraphs should use the CDW model that you were given with examples of literary terms from the text that you found as the core or “data” from the paragraphs. Your thesis statement could be outlined as follows:

I argue that ______name of

E2 Literary Analysis Assignment

Write a 3-5 page formalist analysis of a text

(you may use another theoretical approach such as Feminism or Marxism)

Note: a formalist analysis focuses on the text itself

—specifically the text’s elements, structure, and genre

You can choose a text (poem, short story, or our novel) that is listed on the syllabus or you can

have Professor G approve an outside text.



1. Choose a text

2. If you choose to Research that text and include your findings in the essay, you will

receive up to 10 points extra credit; to do that, you’ll need to find at least 2 sources of

literary criticism that make claims about the text you’ve chosen.

3. Find the text’s overarching meaning, theme, or commentary.

4. Use literary elements seen in the text as evidence to back up your claims about the

text’s overarching meaning or commentary

5. Come to some greater conclusion involving the text’s overarching meaning or

commentary. SO WHAT?


More details on research:

-You will find 2 scholarly articles or books that discuss your text. This type of research is

usually referred to as scholarly interpretations of your text. These sources should not be

“book reports” over the text or news articles about the text.

-This research will allow you to locate your specific reading within the critical conversation

that is already occurring in academia. This may also allow you to specify or refine your

specific reading of a text if you are unsure of your interpretation.

-You will use the library’s online databases OR a hardcopy book from the library to do

your research. No internet sources will be allowed as research.


Note: You do need a Works Cited whether you decide to take on the research portion of

this essay or not.

literary element____________.

So, what you’re doing is, essentially, proving your specific interpretation of the text through the literary elements you found. As an example, imagine me asking you, “how did the symbols you saw in the text lead you to believe that the text was making a commentary on the poor treatment of the mentally ill in society?”

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