Assignment Instructions

Your Essay 2 Assignment,  I am offering the first 12 students who prefer it the later due date of Sunday, May 6th. Please just send me a message with your request. *Note: There is no penalty for choosing this option. 

*Please plan ahead and do not wait until the last minute to make your request. Only requests made before April 29th will be considered. Do not email me on Sunday April 29th asking me to make an exception. The late penalty of 10 pts per day will apply for each day your essay is submitted after the April 29th deadline. 

You are expected to read the “Essay Requirements”, included as an attachment with this assignment. Please read through and familiarize yourself with these requirements, as there are penalties for any of the guidelines that are not followed.

*Please note, no revisions of essays are accepted. Once an essay is graded, the grade is final.


This essay should be a 750-1000 word essay focusing on the poetry we have read during Weeks three and four. Do not use the poems you used in your initial posts during weeks three and four.  I will be checking.

  1. This essay will be the first in which you will use some sources. While it should primarily use passages from the poem to discuss as evidence, it should also reference 1-2 scholarly sources.
  2. The essay should be in MLA essay format (see  the sample essay for an example of an MLA formatted essay).
  3. The essay must have an MLA format works cited list that cites all sources used.
  4. The essay grading rubric can be found here.
  5. Do not use the same poems you used previously for your initial post in weeks three and four.  I will be checking.
  6. Avoid any and all summary sites within your essay. 
  7. Use literary present and third person in your essay, as discussed in lesson two.

Assignment: Analyze one poem from the assigned readings using one of the following critical approaches (NOT reader response or biographical criticism) we discussed in the Week four forum, using one to two secondary sources to help support your argument. This source must be peer-reviewed and scholarly. Please read lesson four for an explanation about scholarly sources. Make sure that the essay has a strong thesis related to the approach–do not argue that “this poem is best analyzed with this approach.” Again the allowed critical approach choices are:

  • feminist criticism
  • historical criticism
  • Marxist and social criticism
  • New Historicism
  • psychological criticism
  • structuralism

If you need more information on the different types of criticism, consult the webpages on criticism linked in the “additional readings” area of the Week 4 lesson. 

Your required secondary, scholarly source(s) should come from outside of the assigned readings; the Online Library is a good first stop. If you have trouble finding information on your poem, its author, or its context, or have any other questions, please contact me (earlier is better; questions sent on Saturday evening may not be answered until Monday).

Please save your essays under your own last name in the following format: Jones_Essay2
*use your own last name, of course.

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