Out-Out Literary Analysis 

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1. A Catchy Title (not the title of the work you are analyzing but it can be a part of your title)

  • Introduction: the opening paragraph.  The introduction should include the following:
    • Hook, Author, Title, A Short Summary, Thesis

Hook: The beginning sentences of the introduction that catch the reader’s interest.  Ways of beginning creatively include the following: 

  • A startling fact or bit of information 
    • A meaningful quotation (from the work or another source)
    • A rich, vivid description 
    • An analogy or metaphor 
    • Introductions should identify the work of literature being discussed, name of the author, and summary of the work (2-3 sentences).
    • Thesis – what the author reveals about some aspect of the human experience
  • Body: The body of your paper should logically and fully develop and support your thesis. 
    • Each body paragraph should focus on one main idea that supports your thesis statement.
    • Paragraphs include:

i. A topic sentence – a topic sentence states the main point of a paragraph: it serves as a mini-thesis for the paragraph. You might think of it as a signpost for your readers—or a headline—something that alerts them to the most important, interpretive points in your essay. It might be helpful to think of a topic sentence as working in two directions simultaneously. It relates the paragraph to the essay’s thesis, and thereby acts as a signpost for the argument of the paper as a whole, but it also defines the scope of the paragraph itself.

ii. Context for the quote (what is happening in that scene)

  1. Quote/Concrete details – specific example/s from the work to provide evidence for your topic sentence/supports thesis.   
  2. Explanation –  interpretation of the concrete detail/s.
  3. Repeat – Quote (should be 2-3 per paragraph)   
  4. Clincher/Concluding Sentence – last sentence of the body paragraph.  It concludes the paragraph by tying everything together (explains)

4. Conclusion: the last paragraph where you are given one last chance to convince the reader of your argument and provide a sense of closure.

  1. Summarize your argument – thesis and main points
  2. A sophisticated conclusion does not simply restate the thesis of the introduction or summarize the logic presented in the body of the essay. Your conclusion, most often, will try to suggest the broader significance of your discussion – why is it important?

Adapted from amundsenhs.org/

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